Top 10 Draft Successes in Saints History: #3 Pat Swilling

Starting April 4th and continuing through April 29th, Canal Street Chronicles will be counting down the top 10 draft busts and then the top 10 draft successes in Saints history. Feel free to to use these posts as a springboard for discussion about how awful or how great each draft pick turned out.

For an explanation on how our draft successes work, go here.

Pat Swilling was a Georgia Tech Yellow Jacket drafted in the 1986 draft. He was selected with the 60th overall pick and would join Rickey Jackson as the other OLB for the Saints. Does this sound familiar? It should. Combined with Jackson, Vaughn Johnson and Sam Mills the Saints had created the Dome Patrol. Over his seven years with the Saints, Swilling accumulated 76.5 sacks, three interceptions including a pick-six and an enormous amount of tackles (Before 2001, tackles were not an official NFL statistic. Therefore, an enormous amount is my best estimate).

Swilling was a great linebacker for the Saints, making the Pro Bowl four times while with the team and earning two first team and two second team All-Pro nominations. Swilling was also the 1991 defensive Player of the Year winner. Swilling had everything except a Super Bowl ring.

Pat ended his seven year tenure with the Saints in 1992 when he was traded to the Detroit Lions for a first and fourth round pick. While in Detroit, Swilling wasn't the same player and would eventually move on to the Raiders. He had success in Oakland his first year, but couldn't repeat it. He eventually retired after the 1998 season with twelve seasons under his belt.

Swilling also owns possibly the worst record to have: losing the most playoff games (6) without a single win. As good as he, and the other linebackers of the Dome Patrol, they never got to win a playoff game.

 

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