The Who Dat Boys …… Can They Make A Quick Turnaround ?

The Who Dat Boys …… Can They Make A Quick Turnaround ?

One year removed from having won the Superbowl the New Orleans Saints had the inauspicious privilege of being hoisted on their own petards during the wildcard round of last season’s NFL playoffs by the Seattle Seahawks . That untimely exit left many wondering whether or not the New Orleans Saints had in fact become complacent in light of their triumph . The loss in of-itself was simply one where what you see is what you get as complacency simply had set in with this organization .

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Slide show for your perusal .

Heroes in the wake of the post ‘Hurricane Katrina’ disaster the Saints set out to bring pride back to the Crescent City and its residents . The 2010 regular season for the team showed that while they still possessed that offensive prowess there was something lacking in Sean Payton’s team. It was never properly addressed by the coach and his assistants in spite of the belief that this organization was looking to be once again a part of the postseason. Team owner Tom Benson loved being the center of attention after the years of ridicule being portrayed as disinterested NFL franchisee . But the tide turned after the team was able to secure the trade that would bring Drew Brees from the San Diego Chargers to join the New Orleans Saints . And the rest as they say is history as things gradually progressed to the point were the quarterback would simply bring about changes in the fortunes of the organization.

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New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landriew , second from right, speaks during a tour and dedication of the newly renovated Louisiana Superdome, home of the New Orleans Saints NFL football team, in New Orleans, Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2011. The $85 million in state-funded upgrades were a key part of the state’s agreement with the New Orleans Saints to ensure the team remains in New Orleans through 2025. From left are Saints owner Tom Benson, Superdome Management Group senior vice president Doug Thornton , Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and Saints owner and executive vice president Rita Benson LeBlanc. AP Photo/Gerald Herbert …..

This season however , with changes made by the front office led my general manager Mickey Loomis the loss of Reggie Bush notwithstanding the organization sought to make the necessary moves through the draft and via free agency make this team considerably better and a serious challenger within the NFC South , the conference as a whole and a legitimate contender for the Superbowl once again.

With the former Heisman Trophy winner now making his home with the Miami Dolphins like a former Saints’ predecessor , Ricky Williams ___ it has to be said that Bush’s undistinguished career with the Saints was simply one of ups and downs. Never truly acclimatizing or living up to the hype the player will now try to prove himself worthy of Dolphins’ trust in him. Dolphins’ owner Stephen Ross , general manager Jeff Ireland and coach Tony Sparano may well be going out on a limb in acquiring the player but given Dolphins’ woes of last season within the AFC East of this organization leads me to believe that not only is this an act of desperation but Sparano’s very future will rely upon Reggie Bush leading this team with some authority on the field of play.

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Darren Sproles (43) of the New Orleans Saints works out during practice at the New Orleans Saints training facility on August 5, 2011 in Metairie, Louisiana. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) ………

The New Orleans Saints at this point through attrition and the moves made via free agency and the draft should be considerably better. The team added Alex Barron , Aubrayo Franklin , Olin Kreutz , Will Herring , Darren Sproles , Fabian Washington and Shaun Rogers . Players one would still deem that they have something to offer the organization and will ultimately be of benefit to the team. The defense needed to be shored up and it should now bode well for the Saints over the course of the regular season. The Saints having drafted Mark Ingram to complement a receiving corp that might just one of the most potent weaponry of any team within the NFC and league as a whole .

As I alluded to earlier the season could very well give a great insight into how the New Orleans may well acquit themselves . And given the competitiveness within the NFC South , a trio teams in the Atlanta Falcons , Carolina Panthers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers ___ each of whom will be looking to prove their dominance within the division. From my own perspective I believe that the Carolina Panthers will have their struggles as Cam Newton looks to acquaint himself to the rigors of the NFL as rookie coach Ron Rivera also has his own baptism of fire within the league.

The Falcons with their Pro Bowl quarterback Matt Ryan and Mike Smith the team’s coach will also be looking to gauge their own competitiveness within the NFL this upcoming season . I can’t say that the Atlanta Falcons are not a team to be feared but given the inconsistency shown by the team they may well struggle to prove themselves truly worthy consideration as a Superbowl contender .

For what is now a resurgent Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ organization led by coach Raheem Morris and general manager Mark Dominik . This will be a team looking to make even further strides than beyond what was achieved last season . The Tampa Bay Buccaneers narrowly missed the postseason by failing to notch an eleventh win which would have secured them a berth in playoffs. That lone misstep pretty much summed up a lost opportunity for the team which was gallantly led by their quarterback Josh Freeman .

Coming off a stellar season Josh Freeman will be out to prove to his doubters that he’s quite capable of taking this current roster to the next level. Certainly those who have witnessed the play of the young quarterback will know that he has a great deal of poise about him and that his maturity level is way beyond what many believed capable of a the third year starter. Raheem Morris, his coaching staff have a great deal of faith in the player and under the tutelage of quarterbacks’ coach Alex Van Pelt one can see the strides taken to improve Freeman’s play.

Ever resourceful , this organization will be looking to usurp the perceived supremacy of both the Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints as their season unfolds. Their first task will be gauge themselves during their first outing of the preseason against the Kansas City Chiefs . Rookies and some starters will play a number of series as Raheem Morris and the coaching staff get the chance to assess the players under a game scenario , albeit that is merely a preseason game. It will be interesting to see how the fans will view the chances of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers over the course of the season and whether or not they are in fact credible contenders within the NFL. The disappointment of last season may well still linger but if this team can put that behind them , then there’s no reason not to believe why they cannot have a chance to prove themselves worthy opponents over of this NFL calendar .

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Raheem Morris, center, takes a break from practice to sign autographs for fans during NFL football training camp on Friday, July 29, 2011, in Tampa, Fla. AP Photo/Brian Blanco ….

The NFC South is not often considered one of the glamor divisions of the NFL . But when one considers that a sole loss was all that deprived the Buccaneers of finishing with a 11-5 mark and making the postseason as a wildcard entrant leads me to believe that this team won’t be making the same sort of mistake again. They have learned their lesson and most certainly that seems to be now showing during which we are now seeing Freeman taking much more of a leadership role on this team alongside seasoned veterans Kellen Winslow Jr and Ronde Barber .

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

What thoughts if any do you have concerning the New Orleans Saints and in your opinion are they viable contenders within their division and perhaps the Superbowl ? Or do you in fact see either the Tampa Bay Buccaneers or Atlanta Falcons proving to be a better team this upcoming season ? Simply leave a comment as to your thoughts .

Alan aka tophatal ……. https://tophatal.wordpress.com

Contact tophatal ………. rapptu@gmail.com

http://twitter.com/tophatal

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Picture and slide show details below .

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(1) New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landriew , second from right, speaks during a tour and dedication of the newly renovated Louisiana Superdome, home of the New Orleans Saints NFL football team, in New Orleans, Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2011. The $85 million in state-funded upgrades were a key part of the state’s agreement with the New Orleans Saints to ensure the team remains in New Orleans through 2025. From left are Saints owner Tom Benson, Superdome Management Group senior vice president Doug Thornton , Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and Saints owner and executive vice president Rita Benson LeBlanc . AP Photo/Gerald Herbert ….

(2) Head coach Sean Payton talks with Defensive Coordinator Gregg Williams of the New Orleans Saints during practice at the New Orleans Saints training facility on August 5, 2011 in Metairie, Louisiana. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images …..

(3) Quarterback Drew Brees (9) talks with center Olin Kreutz (50) of the New Orleans Saints during practice at the New Orleans Saints training facility on August 5, 2011 in Metairie, Louisiana. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images ……

(4) METAIRIE, LA – AUGUST 05: Mark Ingram (28) of the New Orleans Saints works out during practice at the New Orleans Saints training facility on August 5, 2011 in Metairie, Louisiana. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images …..

(5) Darren Sproles (43) of the New Orleans Saints works out during practice at the New Orleans Saints training facility on August 5, 2011 in Metairie, Louisiana. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images ………

(6) TAMPA, FL – JULY 29: Quarterback Josh Freeman (5) of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers signs an autograph during the team’s first pre-season training camp practice July 29, 2011 at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images …

(7) Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Raheem Morris, center, takes a break from practice to sign autographs for fans during NFL football training camp on Friday, July 29, 2011, in Tampa, Fla. AP Photo/Brian Blanco ………

(8) TAMPA, FL – JULY 29: Tight end Kellen Winslow (82) of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers runs up-field with a pass during the team’s first pre-season training camp practice July 29, 2011 at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Florida. Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images ….
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How Many QB’s Does It Take Indeed And Need To Change A Light Bulb ….?

 
 

How  Many  QB’s  Does It   Take   Indeed  And  Need To   Change  A  Light  Bulb  ? 

 

 

 

Well  the  NFL   Draft  has  come  and  gone.  And   no  doubt  many  of  the  fans  who  prognosticated  the  decisions  that  were  made  by  their    respective  teams  may  well  have   been  heartened   or   disgusted with   those   choices. 

 

 

Josh Freeman  seen  here  alongside NFL  Commissioner   Roger  Goodell  on  Draft  Day.   The venue  for the  draft  was the  Radio  City  Music  Hall  in  New York  City , New York.
Josh Freeman seen here alongside NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell on Draft Day. Freeman was taken as the seventeenth pick overall in the first round by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Stuart Burroughs .........

 

 

 

Well  the  butt  of  jokes  here   in  the  Tampa  Bay   area   is  alluded  to  in   the  title  of  this   piece.  How  Many  QB’s   Does It  Take   Indeed ,  And   Need  To  Change   A  Light  Bulb  ?  If   you  can   answer   that   question  ,  then  I  for  one   am  not  prepared  to  question   your    intelligence. 

 

 

Freeman   poses with  family  and  friends  at  the  Radio City  Music  Hall  in New York  City.
Josh Freeman seen here with family and friends at the Radio City Music Hall, New York City. Venue for the 2009 NFL Draft. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Stuart Rice ...........

 

 

  

 

Suffice  to  say  with   the  decision  made   by  the  Tampa  Bay   Buccaneers  hierarchy.  One   has to  be  now   questioning  the   direction  of  this  franchise  and  the   intent   of both   the  coach  Raheem  Morris  and  that  of  the  GM  Mark  Dominik.    

 

 

 

 

In  making    Josh  Freeman  the  quarterback  from   Kansas  State the   seventeenth  overall  pick  in  the  first  round  of  the  draft. I  can  only  surmise  that    Morris   might’ve  been  pressured   into  this  decision .  Or   primarily   from   his   knowledge   of  a  player  whom   he   knew   from   his  days  with  the  university  as a  defensive   coordinator.   His   love  of  the   player  can’t   have  gone   unnoticed   to  those of  us  in  the  locale.  It  quite    literally  bordered   on  unadulterated    lust.  And  that  if  anything   should   really  have  been   cause  for  concern.

 

 

The  Buccaneers   with  their  first  round draft pick  Josh  Freeman
Josh Freeman (center) is seen here alongside Buccaneers' coach Raheem Morris (left) and the franchise's GM Mark Dominik (right). The player was introduced to locally convened press at a conference held at the team's headquarters. picture appears courtesy of getty images/ Brian Scovell ................

 

 

 

 

That being   said   with   there   being   so  many   deficiencies   on this   Buccaneers’  team  on  both  sides  of  the  ball.  I  for   one  feel   that both   Dominik  , Morris  and  the  Bucs’   coaching   staff  neglected  their   duties  in   getting   real   value  with  that   number   one  pick.   They  could’ve   chosen  to  have   traded   down  or   go  out  and   obtained  a  defensive   tackle  or   offensive   lineman.   But instead  they  chose  to  go  with   a  player who  shall  we   say   can   be   described   having  a  strong  arm   but   prone  to  making   mistakes.  And   whose   accuracy   is   less  than  can  be  desired.

 

 

 

 

Josh  Freeman
Bucs' first round draft pick Josh Freeman takes questions from the locally convened press after his arrival at the team's headquarters for a press conference inTampa. pictures appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Rod Gilliam .............

 

  

Whatever    Morris  sees  in the   player  isn’t  apparent  to   us  all.  I’d  dare   say  that  it’s   not   completely   apparent  to  even   the   most   ardent   of  Bucs’  fans   at  this  juncture.   Many   of  them   summarily   booed  the   choice   when  it   was   announced  to   those  in  attendance     at the    franchise’s    annual      draft   day  turnout.   Suffice   to  say   they   felt   that  the   pick   could’ve   been  made  better   use  of  with   another  choice  completely.  Some   might   agree   while   others   will   disagree.     Though   not  a Bucs’  fan   ,  I   do   live  within  the  community  where  the   coverage   of the  team  is  almost  incessant  day  in  day  out   when  it comes to  the  local  sports’   talk   radio shows.   And  it’s  not  lost  on  the  local    tv  media  either.  As  everyone  wants  to  have  a   say   in the  fortunes of   the  team.

 

 

 

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