The French Quarter Connection

Super Bowl 44 was certainly full of memorable moments:

1. The interception of Peyton Manning for a 74-yard touchdown return by the Saints’ Tracy Porter that pretty much sealed the victory for New Orleans.

2. The gutsy on-side kick and recovery by the Saints to open the second half.

3. The Colts’ goal-line stand on fourth down before the half.

4. The determination it took to get the ball across the goal line by the Saints’ Lance Moore for the 2-point conversion. That play provided some credence to the old cliche “which team wanted it more.”

But all that pales in comparison to the image of Saints quarterback Drew Brees holding his one-year-old son during the trophy presentation ceremony.

That image alone said more than any Focus on the Family ad run during the game featuring collegiate QB superstar and NFL hopeful Tim Tebow and his mom.

Father and son in the moment on the national stage celebrating a Super Bowl victory.

As the song says, “Ain’t that America…”

‘Dat’s’ what it’s all about.

Laissez les bon temps roules!

Today they’re partying in New Orleans. Of course, partying in New Orleans is redundant.

Fat Tuesday, the prequel. They’re calling it Dat Tuesday.

In case you’ve been in a coma or don’t watch anything but Fox News (OK, also redundant), the Saints winning the Super Bowl meant a lot more than being world champions.

We’re all aware of how the city had to lift itself up after Hurricane Katrina and how the team itself became a part of the rebuilding process.

It’s a great American story, with redemption as the reward.

A lot of the faithful also suggest that divine intervention played a huge role in the Saints’ Super Bowl victory.

There was even a pastor who wrote a prayer for a Saints victory. Hey, padre, these guys weren’t going into the Battle of the Bulge, it was a football game in Miami. But then again, recalling the insight of the late, great George Carlin, football and war almost seem to be kindred spirits.

And it wasn’t of biblical proportions, ala David and Goliath.

What, is Peyton Manning the devil because he’s a pitchman for corporate America?

But there you have it —- die-hard New Orleans residents and transplants or those who have left but still reside there in their hearts believe the Saints win was part of God’s greater plan. People of New Orleans suffered immensely five years ago and through this sporting victory, the Almighty has given them even more hope.

Guess if any team would be a recipient of divine intervention, they would be called the Saints.

If anything, New Orleans is definitely diverse —– one one hand it’s devoutly religious (there’s a heavy Catholic population there) and capable of partying in rather decadent ways (go do the voodoo that you do so well.)

Still, if the team didn’t win the hearts of America, football lovers or not, before the game — they’ve got it now.

Football junkies are well aware of the franchise’s decades as losers —- fans with bags over their heads at games —- the team called the “Aints.”

Makes one believe that there really is a time for every purpose under heaven.

“It’s not that the Colts aren’t praying,” one New Orleans pastor said. “It’s just that we’re praying harder.”

Put that in your NFL playbook. Or better yet, rule book: “Personal foul, not praying hard enough. Fifteen yard penalty —- first down.”

For those who casually say football —- or any sport for that matter —- is a religion in America, this one’s for you.

Just a coincidence that the majority of the games each week are played on Sunday?

God is always a part of sports…. athletes always thank Jesus for giving them the strength to win a game.

Faith can move mountains, so why not a football on a 90-yard drive to the end zone?

For all the hardship the people had to go through, and for all those years of futility for the Saints, quand on veut, on peut.

Lately, it seems that the new year has always started off with a feel-good story that the country embraces.

Last year around this time it was the “Miracle on the Hudson” —– the jetliner that made the emergency landing on the New York river and all aboard survived.

This year it’s the football franchise from the city that’s the birthplace of jazz —- and the American cocktail.

Football purists would’ve rather seen Brett Favre vs. Peyton Manning, the NFL’s premiere quarterbacks, battle to the finish.

It would’ve been a great game. But not a great story.

There’s something to that 12th player theory. They provide the soul to theheart of a team.

And this year they can say they played on America’s team.

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One Response to The French Quarter Connection

  1. paul C in PA says:

    I’m back from snow-blowing the driveway…What a great game it was. I was happy to see NO win. Just remember, except for Neil O’Donnell, Black & Gold ALWAYS beats Blue & White.

    MJP, no comment on the Super Bowl. Oh yeah Rush is too fat to have ever played a sport and Beck is too much of a wimp.

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