The New Orleans Saints are one of the few NFL franchises that have not had any players inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
We thought it fitting on the eve of this years enshrinement ceremony to look back at Saints players who may or may not ever make it to Canton — the unsung hero’s, the supporting players, or the one season wonders that left an impression on Saints fans everywhere.
1. Archie Manning: Manning was drafted by the Saints with the 2nd overall pick in the 1971 draft, spending the next 10 seasons in New Orleans. In those ten seasons he never recorded a winning record, the epitome of a good quarterback on a bad team. Although his team was bad, Manning managed two pro bowl appearances in 1978 and 1979, as well as being named NFC Offensive Player of the Year in 1978.
2. Danny Abramowicz: Abramowicz was drafted by the Saints in the 17th round of the 1967 draft. As a Saint from 1968 to 1970 he was ranked in the top 10 in the NFL in receptions and receiving yards. In his career he played 111 games, had 369 catches for 5,686 yards, and 39 touchdowns. He is a member of the New Orleans Saints HOF and once held the record for catching at least one pass in 105 consecutive games.
3. Joe Horn: Horn, aka Hollywood, was acquired by the Saints as a free agent in 2000 — quickly earning a starting role. Horn enjoyed great success as a Saint making 4 pro bowls in 6 seasons and is the Saints franchise leader in several statical categories. (Receiving yards 1,399, touchdowns 11, 100+ yard receiving games 27) His career stats are 603 receptions for 8,744 yards and 58 touchdowns.
4. Morten Anderson: Anderson played with the Saints from 1982 to 1994 making 6 Pro Bowls during his tenure with the black and gold, earning the nickname “Mr. Automatic” for becoming one of the most steady and accurate kickers in the league. He is the Saints all time leading scorer and holds a slew of NFL records, including but not limited too most points scored (2,544), most games played (382), most games with 5 or more field goals (9), and most field goals (50 or more yards) in a game (3).
5. Michael Lewis: Lewis played for the Saints from 2001 to 2006 as a wide receiver/return specialist. The “Beer Man”, a nickname derived from his time spent as a Budweiser delivery driver, is the Saints career leader in punt returns (142) and punt return yardage (1,482). Michael enjoyed his best season in 2002 when he led the NFL in combined kick-punt return yardage with 2,432 yards. (1,807 kickoff, 625 punt)
Side note: I purposefully left out Sam Mills, Rickey Jackson, Pat Swilling, and Vaughan Johnson, all members of the Dome Patrol. To date none of these players have been nominated for Hall of Fame consideration, although it is expected a ballot will be put in this year for Rickey Jackson. Everyone of these players deserves to be enshrined in Canton as no linebacker core has ever been as dominate as they were during their hay-day.
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Tags: 2009 Induction Ceremony Archie Manning Canton Danny Abramowicz Dome Patrol Joe Horn Michael Lewis Morten Anderson Ohio Pat Swilling Pro Football Hall Of Fame Rickey Jackson Sam Mills The Dome Patrol Vaughan Johnson