Marques Colston: Is the New Orleans Saints ‘Quiet Storm’ no more?


Let’s get this out of the way — Marques Colston is the greatest wide receiver to ever wear a New Orleans Saints uniform.  Nicknamed the “Quiet Storm” for his spectacular and under-the-radar play since 2006, Colston is the Saints’ all-time leader in receptions (669), receiving yards (9,268) and receiving touchdowns (68).

However, his performance has taken more than a slight decrease as of late, which of course can be blamed on age and health.  Marques Colston, 32, just isn’t the same receiver he once was, and it’s time to admit that he won’t ever be again.  Unlike, quarterback Drew Brees, Colston’s career truly is in the middle of a decline.

Maybe the more stubborn Saints fans will call blasphemy, and they may just want to stop reading here, but after Sunday’s atrocious performance and a slight downfall in 2014, it is becoming evident.

Yes, I know, it has only been one game, and Marques Colston likely will have the occasional big outing.  But between, drops, fumbles and the inability to separate from defenders like he used to be so good at doing, consistency will be hard to come by for perhaps the biggest steal in New Orleans Saints draft history.

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It showed on numerous occasions a year ago, and again in Sunday’s loss to the Arizona Cardinals.  Marques Colston dropped several passes Sunday, including one that went straight into the hands of the defense for an interception, making him responsible for a turnover in the last two season openers, both coming in critical moments that assisted in an unwanted outcome.  Of course, we remember last year’s fumble versus the Atlanta Falcons, which ultimately led to a defeat to begin a disappointing 2014.

It’s unfortunate.  After trading away All-Pro tight end Jimmy Graham, the Saints will be relying on other big men in the red zone, and it’s going to be tough to count on Colston every week.  This is in no way, shape or form a bash on him.  It’s just a realization that’s he’s not who he once was.  That’s part of the game.

New Orleans has a promising big body to help fill the void in Brandon Coleman, who scored the only Saints touchdown on Sunday.  But he’ll need to learn to overcome those dropped passes if he wishes to be a factor in the offense for the long haul, and that will happen with time.  Remember, this is his first year on the 53-man roster.  He’ll adjust accordingly.

With a revamped offensive line, a very dangerous backfield, the emergence of Brandin Cooks, and Drew Brees still under center, this offense will continue to find success.  I just can’t see too much of that success coming from Marques Colston.

Don’t look too much into Sunday’s loss.  The Saints perhaps faced the best defense they’ll see all year.  Things will get better during next week’s home opener versus the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  Hopefully Colston can redeem himself.  He’ll always be loved in New Orleans, but his glory days as Drew Brees’ reliable go-to man are nearing an end.  It’s a tough pill to swallow for Saints fans, but it’s hard to argue.  It’s time for the “new guys” to step up.

Next: Brandon Coleman shows promise in Saints regular season debut