Sharper was signed in 2009 by the Saints in hopes of bolstering a defensive secondary that needed the right pieces of the puzzle to make it work.
His positive demeanor and confident attitude gave the Saints a much needed swagger. His guidance and leadership to the young defensive backs on the team would begin to make an impact. Most certainly with newly drafted first round pick Malcolm Jenkins.
Sharper forced offenses to begin to respect the Saints defense and it’s secondary. It seemed that we would hear the words “Darren Sharper” and “interception” in almost every game.
In an interview during the 2009-2010 season, Saints quarterback Drew Brees was asked about the impact of Darren Sharper.
Brees praised Sharper for being a “ball hawk” and for always being around the football. He joked that it was almost not normal if Sharper didn’t have an interception during a game. Having a quarterback praise a defensive player is a monumental occasion. In Sharper’s case, it was rightly deserved.
The elusive championship that evaded Sharper all those years was finally realized when the Saints won Super Bowl 44. He would finish that season with tying his career best for a third time with 9 interceptions, 3 being returned for a touchdown.
He would break his career interception return yards with 376. Saints fans drooled at the thought of his return the next season with me being one of them. However, Sharper’s time in New Orleans took a “shaky” turn.