In 74 days, on Sept. 11, Minnesota Vikings will host the New Orleans Saints, in the 2017 season opener for both teams. Canal Street Chronicles continues our own series of countdown to kickoff, today we take a look at a few Saints players that have worn the No. 74. As most sports fans know, this jersey number typically identifies offensive and defensive linemen, making this a pretty short list of large men.
Jermon Bushrod (OT, 2007-2012)
Bushrod was selected by the Saints with the 125th pick of the 2007 draft. After Jammal Brown went down with an injury in 2009, Bushrod became the starter at tackle and rode the wave of a magical campaign that culminated in a victory in Super Bowl 44. Jermon was again on the right side of history as he continued to start at tackle through 2012, including a historic statistical season for the Saints offense in 2011. Unfortunately Bushrod walked in free agency in 2013 and signed with Chicago Bears and later signed with the Miami Dolphins in 2016 while also shifting inside to play guard.
Derland Moore (DT/NT, 1973-1985)
The only reason Moore is not the lead picture for this piece is because I couldn’t find an image of him in uniform. Ha. Short of Bushrod’s SB44 ring and 2 Pro Bowl selections, Moore is the most decorated Saint on the list. Not only did Moore spend 13 consecutive seasons with the Saints, he has 1 Pro Bowl selection, was selected to the 40th & 50th Anniversary Saints teams, and inducted into the Saints Hall of Fame. He was the 29th pick in the 1973 draft and retired after playing with the New York Jets in 1986. Consider Derland an iron-man for appearing in 169 games as a Saint.
Kevin Haverdink (OT, 1989-1991)
This is a history piece so I decided to have a bit of fun as well. Haverdink and my next pick will tickle your fancy for sure. After being drafted 133rd in 1989, Haverdink would only last 3 seasons with the Saints and moved on to be a financial planner who hunts, bikes, and kayaks. Haverdink was chosen in the 5th round behind well known Saints players Wayne martin (Rd 1) and Robert Massey (Rd 2). A funny story about Haverdink in retirement explains how he was mistaken for John Elway while vacationing in Colorado. As a consolation prize, Haverdink explained that he was a former NFL player and took some photos. Even before his NFL career began, Haverdink was Elway’s long-shot body double and drew stares from Denver Broncos head coach Dan Reeves, "I'm at the Senior Bowl and Dan Reeves is coaching the Blue team. I go into the first team meeting, he just stares at me. If Elway were a movie star, I could be his body double. At least from a distance."
Ted Gregory (DT, 1988)
The fun with Dan Reeves continues as we recap the hyper-short career of Gregory. After being selected with the 26th pick of the 1988 draft by the Broncos, Reeves finally met Gregory and proclaimed that he was much shorter than his listed height of 6’1” and appeared to be much closer to 5’9”. Gregory’s knee gave out in training camp and was traded to the Saints shortly after. As quickly as it had started, Gregory’s career was ended by a blown knee in his third career game. Ted tried to be a regular Joe and work construction, only to have that career shortened ruptured disc and firmly planting him on the list of worst Broncos draft picks.