The offseason survival guide for New Orleans Saints fans

brianpavek
Nov 30, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; A New Orleans Saints fan celebrates a touchdown against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the second half at Heinz Field. The Saints won the game, 35-32. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 30, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; A New Orleans Saints fan celebrates a touchdown against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the second half at Heinz Field. The Saints won the game, 35-32. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
4 of 4
Next
Dec 6, 2015; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints fans argue from the stand during the second half of The Saints
Dec 6, 2015; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints fans argue from the stand during the second half of The Saints /

Tip #3: Remember that this is the offseason

I probably can’t think of a better way to illustrate this point than the Saints preseason game against the San Francisco 49ers in 2011. Greg Williams blitzed like crazy, and the Saints defense discombobulated Alex Smith and the Niners offense. Based on that performance, it wouldn’t have been unreasonable to believe the Saints were going to field a formidable defense and have no problem if the two teams were to meet later. Here’s the issue though; in the same way some players don’t light the world on fire in preseason games, other times they can look far better than they actually are.

For the most part, coaches aren’t game planning for the preseason, and a lot of the time they come in with a specific set of plays, formations, and personnel groupings that they want to see. It is a time for testing and refining. They might keep score, but don’t for a second think that who wins preseason games matters. A player might have a fantastic preseason and not make the team, and the reverse is also true because the coaches are often looking at and for different things than the rest of us.

This means that you shouldn’t let the preseason get you too down if the team or certain players aren’t looking so great, and you shouldn’t also get too high if they look fantastic. The preseason makes fools of us all, and in some ways we as bloggers/writers look more ridiculous than any one of you because we publicly share our hopes and dreams for a what a player could be, would be, or might be publicly. I know I for one have fallen prey to bad expectations based on preseason play only to be disappointed a few weeks later when real football starts.

Just like when Williams’ blitzes actually got home in preseason in 2011, a player’s performance at that time can be nothing but a mirage (in both directions).

Next: Hourglass running low for Drew Brees, Saints on a long-term deal

The bottom line

It honestly all breaks down to keeping a level head. And that is probably the hardest thing in the world to do because there aren’t any fans out there more passionate than we are as New Orleans Saints fans.

We are all going to find a player or players we desperately want to make the team or that we’re convinced is the next star (mine is P.J. Williams this year, by the way), and there is nothing wrong with that. But, if you would like to at least try to keep your own sanity, then try to keep things in context and remember that as much fun as all the speculation at this time of year is…..it’s still just speculation.

facebooktwitterreddit