If the Atlanta Falcons needed another reason for the rivalry between themselves and the New Orleans Saints to be ramped up, they found it according to a story by James Varney of The Times-Picayune.
According to Varney, the Falcons refused to allow their team logo or former punter Michael Koenen’s name to be present on the bronze statue that was unveiled today in Champions Square.
Pictures of the statue surfaced and clearly shows the Saints logo and Gleason’s name on a lone player diving forward blocking a punt from the an opposing player facing towards Gleason. The opposing player is supposed to be Koenen.
The statue, titled “Rebirth”, captures the moment during the Saints September 26, 2006 game against the Falcons which was the team’s first game inside the Mercedes-Benz Superdome since August 2005 when Hurricane Katrina struck.
The statue not only immortalizes Gleason but the moment that the city of New Orleans was “reborn” and showed the world that they would come back stronger than ever against any tragedy.