I missed this one in the Houma Courier from Mike Detillier yesterday. Its all about the importance of special teams and why they should never be overlooked. I think last season taught some Saints fans about the importance of special teams.
In 2007, Mare hit on 10 of his 17 field goal attempts (59 percent), and we all saw coaching decisions made because the staff didn’t have confidence in him. The Saints slumped to a 7-9 mark last season.
Because of that, the Saints picked up Taylor Mehlhaff in this years draft. Because of Chicago's Devin Hester the Saints also realize the importance of the return game, and look to Reggie Bush for the answer.
“Sometimes you are a bit hesitant to put a player like Reggie (Bush) fulltime as a return man, but if he can change the course of a couple of games it could mean the difference between getting into the playoffs or watching them,” Orgeron said. “I have seen firsthand just how much of a factor he made on those special teams when I was there and all of us are anxious to see those skills here in New Orleans. At USC, teams totally changed their approach on special teams because of Reggie. The guy is lightning in a bottle in the open field.”
Only time will tell.
USA Today has an article about this years Saints team trying to live up to the expectations they had for last season. Not too much here really if you have been following along all summer. Just a recap of our offseason moves. Here are some quotes from Drew Brees.
"My worst year, individually and as a team, was back in '03 in San Diego, and we went from 4-12 to then 12-4 the next year," he says. "My mind-set was that it made us so much mentally stronger, and I think that's what will happen here.
"The only reason we're going to be able to accomplish what we're about to accomplish in '08 is because of what we went through in '07."
To Brees, though, there's no question at all — at least as far as returning to the playoffs.
"There's no doubt," he says. "Any expectation less than that, you might as well leave the building right now."
And now for a trip down memory lane with some Jeremy Shockey talk. Remember that whole thing? Seems like it was just two months ago. Anyway, Shockey has made his first public appearance since pretty much the Superbowl at the POWERade Pro Challenge for children and heat-stricken media at Flushing Meadows Corona Park (I used to play ice hockey there). Shockey's comments can be found at the NY Post (reputable, I know). I present them here for you now, via that article.
"Everybody said that I agreed to get traded and that I would welcome a trade or that I'm unhappy. . . . But you can't find one article that had my direct quote, except from an anonymous source or from this person or from that person, OK?"
To wit: why was he watching the Giants shock the Patriots from a skybox?
"And the truth is, I went to the Super Bowl game to go watch my team play; the Giants wouldn't let me sit on the sidelines with my teammates - I was forced to sit up in a box," Shockey said.
I said to Shockey: "And that ticked you off."
"Words can't explain," he said.
I asked him: "What is your relationship with the front office right now?"
"That's between the management and myself," Shockey said.
I asked him: "Do you want to and expect to play for the Giants this year?"
"Tough questions," he began. "I'm not the Giants front office, because they feel like they have to tell the world about things that happened . . . when it's a situation like this that's so severe, you don't leak it in the media. I'm not ever going to be a leak, its a team. But they feel like they're obligated to put their feelings in the media, which really hurt my family and myself, with the things I've done for them."
Shockey said he had texted yesterday morning with co-owner Steve Tisch.
"I consider him a father figure to me - and he would never betray me, like some other people that are there," Shockey said.
I asked him: "Would you welcome a trade?"
"I'm not saying that - no comment," Shockey said. "Whatever's happened between the Giants and myself is gonna stick between the Giants and myself."
I asked him: "Will you be at minicamp?"
"I plan on fulfilling my contractual obligation but the No. 1 thing that I'm going there for is to be with my teammates (who) I miss so much," he said.
Take note of that last sentence...
...because ESPN.com has its own Shockey article saying its still very questionable whether he will actually attend minicamp. Here is what ESPN reports Jeremy as having said about mandatory minicamp this Wednesday.
"Who knows? I might go to see my mother in Texas. I have no idea," Shockey said.
"Obviously. I'm not 100 percent and if I do show to minicamp, it's going to be, I wouldn't imagine me doing much, just getting treatment on my leg," Shockey told reporters.
So we have two conflicting reports. Shockey is an enigma, wrapped inside a puzzle, hidden within a riddle. Or something like that. He's crazy, thats all you need to know. Fortunately none of this drama relates to the Saints.