by Jim Brown
If you haven’t been following the Benson family soap opera that has dominated news across the state, you are missing a billion dollar power play that’s much better than fiction. New Orleans automobile tycoon and sports icon Tom Benson is in a fight with family heirs over his competency to run two of the nation’s premier sports franchises, the New Orleans football Saints and the basketball NBA Pelicans. And the family quarrel could put the continuing presence of these sports goldmines at risk of leaving New Orleans.
Okay, so you still are walking around mumbling about what happened to the Saints’ once-promising season. You recall a formerly trustworthy pundit who happens to inhabit this space predicting a possible Super Bowl appearance. Even after slogging to a 2-4 record, loyal Who Dats rationalized by saying three of those losses came by a total of six points and just as easily could have gone the other way.
In a desperate attempt to figure out this whacky NFL season from the local perspective, I went right to America’s most popular source for answers to puzzling questions. I went to Google and punched in “teaser.” In only .35 seconds, I received 23,400,000 possible answers, and I began sorting through them to find the right one. My discerning eye immediately was drawn to website addresses for several Teasers Men’s Clubs, with locations in Twin Forks, Montana; Flint, Michigan; Key West, Durham, North Carolina, and elsewhere. The Teasers of Phoenix even awards its customers a pint of draft beer for $3 to go along with, well, you know, its other treats.
It was the interception seen around the world. On Sunday at the Superdome, as the Saints were losing their second game in a row, Bengals Tight End Jermaine Gresham scored a touchdown. After the catch, Gresham attempted to give the football to Bengals fan Christa Barrett. Sadly, the ball was rudely stolen by a Saints season ticket holder, 70-year old Tony Williams, who elbowed Barrett in the face in the process.
When you watch tonight’s Divisional battle between two struggling NFL teams, the Carolina Panthers and the New Orleans Saints, you might want to consider the word “cheap”.
Random thoughts on the Saints’ woeful start while wondering what is happening to the game I love?
by Jim W. Miller
My mother-in-law, the Saints fanatic, has been talking about selling her very nice house in the Lake Terrace community and buying a high-rise condo. Thankfully, this decision has been tied up in the committee of her four daughters and their four slobs of husbands who are allowed to listen but not speak. If a decision had been made prior to Sunday’s 37-34 Saints’ loss at Atlanta, then the eight of us and probably selected teams of the New Orleans Fire Department would have spent Sunday night and probably most of Monday coaxing her off the ledge.
It was reassuring to see Drew Brees in uniform and playing at a high level on Saturday night, even if it was just for two series. In his first action of the preseason, Brees made his short stint look like skelly drills when he methodically took his team down the field against little apparent opposition from the Colts' first teamers. He was passing, he was handing off and, ye gods! he even was running the ball to gain key yardage. I could have done without the latter, and I am certain that most of Who Dat Nation felt the same way.
As the City of New Orleans prepares to host the first Saints preseason game on Friday, they decided to finally take action about the growing homeless problem underneath the Pontchartrain Expressway.
It’s amazing how much you can learn about the local team by reading out of town sources. Did you know the Saints’ defense was cutting edge and on the verge of setting a new standard among NFL ball-hawkers and pigskin pilferers? Neither did I until I read a story in Friday’s Wall Street Journal titled “The Future of Defense in the NFL." With offensive output, as measured by total yards gained, increasing steadily the past three years, something had to be done to curb the trend of offensive domination. And that something is about to hatch in Who Dat Nation.