Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Armchair QB: Goodbye Deuce

Well, I can't say that I didn't see it coming, but I also can't say that it doesn't make me sad to say goodbye to Deuce McAllister. The Saints released him today. Too much money owed to him next year. It's sad, but it's the way of the NFL in these days of free agency. No matter what a guy has done for a team, no matter how much respect he's earned, no matter how much the fans love him. If he's got too much money coming to him, he's out the door. It sucks, but it's business.

Deuce wasn't only a great player on the field, setting records in his eight years with the Saints, but a great guy off the field. One of those genuinely good guys that seem to be a rare commodity in today's world of professional sports. He was a solid leader on and off the field, and fans in New Orleans loved him for it. Still will love him for it. For me, Deuce ranks right up there with my favorite Saints of all time -- Archie Manning, Dalton Hilliard, Sam Mills, Rickey Jackson, the Billy Joes (just kidding on that last one, of course). Perhaps he even surpasses those guys. It's hard to say right now without the perspective of time, but Deuce may just be my favorite Saint. I'll look forward to seeing 26 in the rafters of the Superdome one day, and I'm sad to think that I've seen it on the field for the last time in black and gold.

Thanks, Deuce, for the memories you've given us over the past eight years, and I wish you luck wherever you land. I, along with a lot of other members of the Black and Gold Nation, will be rooting for you, and I'm sure that you'll visit the Dome at least a couple of more times to kick our butts before your career is over.