If you are a casual fan of the sport of football, it is easy to miss the misery fans of the New Orleans Saints have encountered over the last decade. Since the team won the Super Bowl in 2010, the team has been a consistent powerhouse that fails to climb the mountain time and time again. One of my good friends is a die-hard Saints fan, so it is pretty hard to miss his annual disappointment. A few days ago, I got to sit down and have a little talk about his fandom and tears shed.
Christian supports his Saints from the state of Florida, “finding fans in South Florida is pretty difficult, but I’ve met a few scattered here and there.” Being an out of state fan of any team is difficult, but Christian has found no shortage of NFL fans. We consistently talk about the NFL as a whole, especially when the Saints were at the top of their game. He fondly remembers a Monday night football game in which Drew Brees broke the record for most passing yards of all time. In his own words, “Brees was the guy I looked up to as a kid, and it was a huge milestone for him, and a big part of NFL history.”
As the good times come to mind, so do the many bad times over the years. We talked about the infamous ‘Minneapolis Miracle’, and the no call against the Rams, even the heartbreaking loss in the divisional round in Brees’ last season. He remembered his disappointment when the Saints were beaten in the NFC championship game against the Rams, he said “I really thought that was our year, and to lose on a blown call, that was just brutal.” Even though the Minneapolis Miracle comes to mind, he remains adamant that the no call was even worse. Although he has gone through tough times in recent years, he supports his team through thick and thin. He has never considered switching teams, watches every game he can, and travels to games whenever accessible. Recently, he traveled to Jacksonville to watch the Saints put a whoopin’ on the Packers. “I had to go watch Jameis kick off his MVP campaign”.
Christian’s love for Drew Brees is no secret. He has two of his jersey’s and last year, during COVID, he traveled to Atlanta to see Brees in his last season. He remembered sitting in opponent territory, “I had a few wasted Falcons fans get a little aggressive with me, but I guess it happens.” As much as he loves Drew Brees, I have seen a change in Christian, as he is probably becoming Jameis Winston’s number 1 fan. When I told him Winston was named the starter, he fist pumped and couldn’t contain his smile. “I need to embrace Jameis, I think he's a great guy and possibly the future of the Saints.”
Just like other fans of the Saints and the NFL, Christian has taken up a “rivalry” versus wide-out Michael Thomas. Even though he is on the Saints, Christian says it is hard to support him most of the time. He says Thomas is his least favorite player at the moment, “he is not the same person or player he was in 2019” and he also took exception to Thomas receiving late foot surgery in the offseason, which caused him to miss the first few weeks of the season.
As we ride into week 4, Christian is optimistic of the team as they sit at 2-1. Obviously the Saints share a division with the Bucs, so he is hoping for a wild card spot as long as Jameis and the defense could be somewhat consistent. But as for the past, it is all behind him and all Christian can do is look to the future with optimism in his eyes.