As the run-up to the 2013 NFL season hits its stretch run – 26 days and counting before training camp begins – we thought at WWLTV.com it’d be a good time to get the blood flowing for Saints fans.
And what better way to do so than by looking back at some of the biggest or most impressive wins in the Sean Payton Era.
Certainly our order can be dissected and changed and a game we left off could be put on the list. Feel free to leave your thoughts or memories on the particular game chosen today below in the comments section.
No. 10: Payton gets best of mentor (Dec. 10, 2006)
Saints 42, Cowboys 17
New Orleans was 8-4 in Sean Payton’s first season at the helm of a franchise still trying to get its legs after a year on the road thanks to Hurricane Katrina’s man-made devastation.
Heading into this late-season game against Dallas, also 8-4 but coming off of four consecutive wins, one of the storylines was Payton the pupil coaching against his mentor, Bill Parcells.
Turns out, the student schooled the teacher in an impressive Sunday Night Football showdown.
New Orleans’ 25-point win over the Cowboys in ’06 solidified it, along with Chicago, as the team to beat in the NFC. The two would eventually meet in that season’s conference championship game.
Payton used fullback Mike Karney for three touchdowns, called an onside kick that the Saints recovered and New Orleans rang up 536 total yards in blowing out the Cowboys in Irving, Texas.
It was a sign that Payton wouldn’t fold in the biggest games, though the fruits of the labor wouldn’t be reaped until the 2009 season.
Nearly six and a half years later, fans still remember the game, be it for Karney’s touchdown explosion or the emergence of New Orleans’ screen game or Saints fans taking over Texas Stadium.
@wwltvsports put Saints in nat'l spotlight as being "for real"— Jody Heap (@jheap99) June 26, 2013
@wwltvsports I think it was really the first time we say the Payton/Drew machine take off. Airing it out all over the place.— sicboy (@_sicboy) June 26, 2013