All-time sack leaders in New Orleans Saints history

Leigh Oleszczak
Rickey Jackson, New Orleans Saints (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
Rickey Jackson, New Orleans Saints (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images) /
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The New Orleans Saints have had some excellent pass-rushers in their franchise history. Who are the top leaders in sacks for the black and gold? 

If a team is able to get after the quarterback, that makes things easier for the defense and for the offense. The New Orleans Saints have definitely reaped the benefits of having top-notch pass-rushers during their franchise history.

Let’s take a look at the players who lead the organization in sacks.

All stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference

New Orleans Saints all-time sack leaders

10. Derland Moore (48.0)

The Saints spent a second-round pick on Moore in the 1973 draft and played for the team for 13 of his 14 years in the league. During that time, he only had two seasons where he didn’t get a sack and that came during his rookie year and final season with the team. Moore definitely got into the top 10 because of the 13 years he spent in the Big Easy but he’s still a top-10 leader in sacks for the Saints.

9. Jim Wilks (49.0)

Back in the day, drafts didn’t end after seven rounds and teams were able to find playmakers in the double-digit rounds. Wilks was proof of this as the Saints spent a 12th-round pick on him in 1981 and he recorded at least one sack in all but one year of his 13 years spent in New Orleans.

8. La’Roi Glover (50.0)

Glover was actually drafted by the Raiders in the fifth round of the 1996 draft but joined the Saints in year two of his career. He ended up playing for the black and gold from 1997 until 2001 and had some of the best years of his career in New Orleans. Glover’s career-high in sacks was a whopping 17, which he accomplished in 2000. He also played for the Cowboys and Rams following his time with the Saints.

7. Joe Johnson (50.5)

With the 13th overall pick in the 1994 NFL Draft, the Saints selected Johnson out of Louisville. He played for the Saints for seven seasons before ending his career in Green Bay. Johnson’s best year came in 2000 when he had 12.0 sacks and it was impressive that he was able to do that considering he missed the entire 1999 season with a knee injury.

6. Frank Warren (56.0)

Warren was a third-round pick by New Orleans in 1981 and played all 14 years of his career with the Saints. His career-high total of sacks in a single season was 9.5, which he accomplished in 1989.

5. Will Smith (67.5)

With the 18th overall pick in the 2004 NFL Draft, NOLA took Smith out of Ohio State. He was an instant contributor on defense, notching 7.5 sacks as a rookie and posting at least seven sacks in each of his first four seasons. Smith had a career-high 13 sacks in 2009 and even during his last year in 2012, he had 6.5 sacks. He played all nine years of his career in New Orleans.

4. Pat Swilling (76.5)

Dome Patrol member Swilling joined the team in 1986 and had four sacks that year. He exploded onto the scene the following year with 10.5 sacks and continued to be a sack machine in the early portion of his career. His career-high came in 1991 when he had a whopping 17 sacks and that helped earn him the Defensive Player of the Year award for the ’91 season.

3. Wayne Martin (82.5)

A first-round pick in 1989 out of Arkansas, Martin played all 11 years of his career in New Orleans. It took Martin a bit to get going in the sack department, as it wasn’t until 1992 that he reached double-digit sacks, notching an explosive 15.5 sacks that year. Two years later began a four-year streak of Martin tallying double-digit sacks. Even more impressive was that from 1991-1999, Martin never missed a game. He truly was one of a kind.

2. Cameron Jordan (107.0)

There’s a big gap between No. 3 and No. 2 but everyone knows how good Jordan is. A first-round pick in 2011, Jordan has played for the Saints for the entirety of his 11-year career. During that time, he’s had six double-digit sack seasons, with the most recent coming in the 2021 season. His career-high in sacks came in 2019 when he was 30 years old. Jordan has aged like a fine wine.

1. Rickey Jackson (123.0)

The all-time leader in sacks for the Saints is Jackson, who has a 16-sack lead over Jordan. Jackson was a member of the famous Dome Patrol and played in New Orleans for 13 of his 15 years in the league. Jackson consistently put up good numbers and it wasn’t a surprise when he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2010.

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