We continue with the next matchup in our "Most Hated Person in Saints History" tournament.
For those who haven't been following along,we've got a full 64-person bracket packed with all the ghosts from Saints past that you love to hate. We're going matchup by matchup, choosing the more hated Saints figure each time, until we've finally crowned a winner as the most hated person in Saints history.
The full tournament can be found directly below. Our next matchup today is between the No. 15 ranked Steve Walsh vs. No. 50 ranked Fred Thomas.
Your decision can be based on anything you'd like, whether it's on the field performance, off the field antics, or anything in between. I highly encourage those veteran fans to share there memories of some of the older persons in question and make their arguments for or against. Younger members may want to wait and read what the veterans have to say before placing their vote.
To help you make your decision here's a little more info on today's contestants, courtesy of BewareofDog:
Steve Walsh (QB 1990-1993) - "Steve Walsh, BABY!" Can you hear it? DUN DUN DUN, DA DA DUN DUN!!! It was 1990, Bobby Hebert was in the middle of a contract dispute and holdout that would last the entire season, and the Saints were 1-2 with losses to the 49ers in the season opener on Monday Night Football and getting crushed by the Vikings in the following week. The team had enough and decided that local fan favorite, John Fourcade, was definitely not the answer at QB. So, ol' Jim Finks dialed up the Dallas Cowboys and traded 1st, 2nd, and 3rd round picks for Steve Walsh.
Walsh got to The Big Easy and in his very first game, beat the Cleveland Browns in the Dome with 3 TD passes. After that, it was on. Fans were excited and the song "Steve Walsh, BABY!" was quickly produced and rocking the airwaves locally. Only problem was that Walsh was not a soon to be star, nor even a flash in the pan, he was more of a mirage in the desert. Just a fair to middling QB posing as a starter in the NFL after his success at the University of Miami leading the Canes to a 23-1 record and a National Championship in his two seasons as a starter.
He never had a big time NFL arm and had a tendency to get the yips when pressured and made some of the goofiest, "wtf?" plays since Ken Stabler. It was weird. He was a young guy who played at times like Stabler when he was old and had one too many at halftime. Silly stuff, like interceptions that kinda just rolled off the back of his hand, trying to spike the ball to kill the clock but actually fumbling, falling down on handoffs to the RB, and lining up under the Guard instead of the Center and then having to waste a timeout. The Saints finished 8-8 that season and lost to the Bears in the WC. That was pretty much a microcosm of Walsh's career with the Saints. The Saints were 10-9 in the games he started over his 4 seasons and he had 25 TDs, 22 INTs, with a 54.2 comp pct. A career backup, Walsh spent six more seasons in the NFL with 4 other teams.
Fred Thomas (CB 2000-2007) - Poor, Freddy. He gets such a bad rap. It doesn't seem like it, but, Fred Thomas actually played 8 seasons for the Saints. That's a long time for a guy who is supposedly as bad as some folks make him out to be. The problem with Thomas is that he was around so long, people mostly remember his last years with the Saints.
He was originally one of Randy Mueller's free agent pickups in 2000 in which he completely remade the team after "The Great Purge" following the 1999 season when Tom Benson cleaned house following the Ditka years. He took over as a starter in his second season and was a serviceable to decent cover guy. Not someone who was gonna grab a lot of picks but he was usually there on the play. Even when he was getting beat. His problem was that he was an undersized corner (listed at 5'9" but that was B.S.) and he kept getting shorter each year that he got older.
Thomas played decent football his first three seasons as a starting CB for the Saints, and like all corners, he made some plays and he got beat on plays. But, with ol' Freddy, the thing was he always battled the other guy. Even when he was completely over-matched by much larger receivers like Terrell Owens. As he got older though, the plays in which he was getting beat became more frequent. But, he still battled. Like for instance, the Sunday Night game against the Cowboys in 2006 when he was covering Owens with a cast on his hand. Unlike, some cats who constantly chased receivers into the end zone after never even being near the play (Queue up, Dan Kelly!). Anyway, as the years wore on, Freddy kept getting older, shorter, and beaten more frequently, until finally, his days as a Saint were over.
Voting will be open for exactly 48 hours from the time of publish. Voting results and brackets will be updated as we go along.