Saints take initiative with Williams hire

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Gregg Williams may or may not be a savior to the New Orleans Saints. We won’t know that for awhile.

But for now, he simply brings Saints fans hope…a reason to believe the Saints will be playing at this time next season.

Given the team’s history, his hire is quite a break from tradition.

For years, Saints fans – be it right or wrong – have lamented the fact that the team’s head coaches have been reluctant to make moves on their coaching staff when a certain area of the team is underperforming.

Take Jim Haslett – for all the points the Saints offenses put up behind Deuce McAllister, Joe Horn and Aaron Brooks (the times weren’t all bad with A.B. Just remember, before the Brees/Payton era, that was the highest scoring bunch in team history), the defenses under defensive coordinator Rick Venturi were never good enough for the team to get to the postseason.

But Venturi remained until Haslett was relieved of his duties…and he even promoted Venturi to be his defensive coordinator this past season when he took over the Rams.

Flash back even further: When Jim Mora and the Dome Patrol won a lot of close, low-scoring games. But among many fans, the name Carl Smith was a dirty word – his conservative play calling drove Dome patrons insane.