Italyun StallyunContributor IAugust 7, 2009

CANTON, OH - AUGUST 3: Line judge Gary Arthur of the NFL signals a third down as the Indianapolis Colts play against the Washington Redskins in the Pro Football Hall of Fame Game at Fawcett Stadium on August 3, 2008 in Canton, Ohio.   (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

In no particular order here are

The Italyun Stalyun’s “10” most appreciated football players for New Orleans, who unfortunately ,will never make the Canton Hall of Fame (in my lifetime). They played their guts out for New Orleans, but in Canton they grade differently for candidacy in the NFL’s Hall Of Fame… very high standards coupled with a selection process that is primarily based on consistency of Super-bowl appearances, championships, and winning per cent ages will hurt their chances of ever being inducted in Canton. Of course, they will be loved and appreciated by New Orleans fans … here are my favorites:


2003- RB Deuce McAllister: All-NFC (Pro Football Weekly/PFWA) Deuce was “Bar None”… the most cherished running back  for the New Orleans Saints to come along to date … his heart was even bigger than his talent and that’s saying a lot about a great RB!


2002 KR Michael Lewis: All-Pro 1st Team (Associated Press, College & Pro Football Newsweekly, Football Digest, Pro Football Weekly/PFWA, Sports Illustrated, Sporting News); All-NFC KR/PR (Pro Football Weekly/PFWA) The New Orleans Saints have discovered many exciting football gems. But none more charismatic than …The Beer man!  

2000 DT La'Roi Glover: Unanimous All-Pro 1st Team (Pro Football Weekly/PFWA, AP, USA Today, Sports Illustrated, Sporting News, College & Pro Football Weekly, Football Digest); All-NFC 1st Team (Pro Football Weekly/PFWA, Football News)  Did a physical makeover during one off-season that launched his successful career for years afterward at nose tackle (moved on to Dallas later but was never forgotten about in New Orleans)


ST Fred McAfee: All-Pro 1st Team (Pro Football Weekly/PFWA); All-Pro 2nd Team (Football Digest); All-NFC (Pro Football Weekly/PFWA) Fun guy to watch on kickoffs and kick returns on both offense and defense and one of the “naturally funny” guys on the team for years.  


1983-87, 1992-93 LB Rickey Jackson: All-Pro 1st Team (Sporting News); All-Pro 2nd Team (AP); All-NFC 1st Team (UPI, Pro Football Weekly) All-Pro 1st Team (Newspaper Enterprise Assoc., Sporting News) Perennial super stud LB of the DOME PATROL


1987, 1989-91 LB Pat Swilling: All-Pro 1st Team (AP, PFWA, Sporting News, Pro Football Weekly, Newspaper Enterprise Assoc.); All-NFC 1st Team (UPI, Pro Football Weekly) Perennial fleet-footed, finesse type, “QB hassling” linebacker of the DOME PATROL


1987-93 LB Vaughan Johnson: All-Pro 1st Team (Newspaper Enterprise Assoc.); All-Pro 2nd Team (AP); All-NFC 1st Team (UPI, Pro Football Weekly) Monster man whose record speaks for itself.. Co-anchor of the DOME PATROL (along side Sam Mills)

RB Dalton Hilliard: All-Pro 2nd Team (AP, Newspaper Enterprise Assoc.); All-NFC 2nd Team (UPI) One of the smallest but well-packed physiques with a very low center of gravity…ability to disappear very easily behind the front line, was totally fun to watch running through the line!  


1978 QB Archie Manning: All-NFC 1st Team (UPI, Sporting News) Absolutely the nicest person to never make the Hall of Fame ( but his sons have a place reserved for the Manning name) I looked up the definition of “class” and saw Archie Manning’s  picture!


1981 “Hokie” Gajan:  …drafted in the 10th round (249th overall) of the 1981 Draft, only played 5 seasons but will be remembered by fans for his huge heart and great sense of humor!


I deliberately excluded some very obvious names like Sam Mills, Morton Anderson & Wille Roaf because I hope one day they will be able to join Jim Finks in the HOF one day…


In any event, I’m sure you have your own favorites…   “GO SAINTS!”


Italyun Stalyun