NEW ORLEANS -- It was still night-time when eager Saints fans started lining up at the gates to the team's practice field. Anthony Ramirez was first in line.
"I am a New Orleans Saints fan," smiled Ramirez. "I'm proud and I come from Houston, Texas. My 19th birthday is today, July26, we're out here to celebrate the first day of training camp, been out here since 12 o'clock going strong."
"The boss is back, the king, the king, the king is back," grinned another fan wearing an old style leather football helmut.
"Who Dat, Who Dat say Dey Gon beat those Saints? Nobody, especially them Falcons," chanted another fan.
By the time the gates opened, there was a huge crowd lined up to get inside.
"Who Dat, all the way from California," said a lady heading through the gate.
The fans quickly filled the bleachers. They cheered when Coach Sean Payton came onto the field, and cheered again for Quarterback Drew Brees, then watched avidly to see how good their team will be this year.
"I'm ready for it, ready," said a grinning fan. "So what are you looking for? I'm looking for another Super Bowl, another Super Bowl. I think they're going to go this year, I guess," he added, laughing.
Who Dat!" chanted a group of children.
"Very excited," said another fan. I can't wait for the season to start. I'm very glad to be out here with my little one, she's a Saints fan too."
"Who Dat!" said his daughter.
Now if you're one of those poor people who had to work on this Friday, visit Saturday and Sunday, 8:50 a.m. to 11:50 a.m., for two more practices, Sunday with pads. It's not long before the first preseason game August 9.