1990 New Orleans Saints season

1990 New Orleans Saints season

1990 New Orleans Saints season
Head coach Jim Mora
General manager Jim Finks
Owner Tom Benson
Home field Louisiana Superdome
Results
Record 8–8
Division place 2nd NFC West
Playoff finish Lost NFC Wild Card
Timeline
Previous season      Next season
< 1989      1991 >

The 1990 New Orleans Saints season was the team's 24th in the National Football League.

The Saints, with a record of eight wins and eight losses, became the 5th team in NFL history at or below .500 to qualify for postseason play.[1]

In 2004, Football Outsiders' Mike Tanier named the 1990 Saints as one of the "worst playoff teams ever":[2]

The NFL added a third Wild Card team per division in 1990; the league seems to celebrate these additions by inviting a truly undeserving team to the party in the first year. [...] The Niners and Giants were clearly the best teams in the conference. The Eagles, Redskins, and Bears were also good. Everyone else would have packed their bags at Halloween if it weren't for the additional postseason bid.

With two weeks to play, that final bid apparently belonged to the Cowboys. Jimmy Johnson's boys were 7-7 with two games to play and were on a three-game winning streak. The Saints were 6-8 and were about to play the Niners. Four teams from the NFC East? Why not: the other divisions were lousy.

As fate would have it, the Saints would beat a Niners team with little to play for, while the Cowboys would lose to the Eagles and Falcons in the final weeks. So instead of seeing the playoff debuts of Troy Aikman and Emmitt Smith, the 1990 Wild Card game gave us (drum roll please:) Steve Walsh, John Fourcade, and Ironhead Heyward. The Bears made short work of the Saints in the playoffs, intercepting Walsh and Fourcade three times in a 16-6 win.

That Saints team featured one of the great linebacking corps of history: Sam Mills, Rickey Jackson, Pat Swilling, and Vaughn Johnson [sic]. They had some winning seasons and playoff appearances ahead of them. But they would never win a playoff game, and they'll best be remembered for keeping the real rising powerhouse of the NFC out of the postseason for a year.

This article is inaccurate about the Cowboys, however, as Aikman had suffered a season-ending injury, leaving backup quarterback Babe Laufenberg to start (and lose) Dallas' final two regular season games, which combined with the Saint's Monday Night victory over the Rams in the season finale, put the Saints into the playoffs.

Offseason

NFL Draft

Round Pick Player Position School
1 14 Renaldo Turnbull DE West Virginia
2 44 Vince Buck DB Central State
3 71 Joel Smeenge DE Western Michigan
4 98 DeMond Winston LB Vanderbilt
5 125 Charles Arbuckle TE UCLA
6 156 Mike Buck QB Maine
6 158 James Williams LB Mississippi State
7 183 Scott Hough G Maine
8 207 Gerry Gdowski QB Nebraska
8 210 Derrick Carr DE Bowling Green
9 233 Broderick Graves RB Winston-Salem State
9 236 Lonnie Brockman LB West Virginia
10 260 Gary Cooper WR Clemson
10 267 Ernest Spears DB USC
11 287 Webbie Burnett DT Western Kentucky
12 320 Chris Port G Duke

Personnel

Staff

[3]

Roster

[3]

Regular season

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
1 September 10, 1990 San Francisco 49ers L 13-12
68,629
2 September 16, 1990 at Minnesota Vikings L 32-3
56,272
3 September 23, 1990 Phoenix Cardinals W 28-7
61,110
4 Bye
5 October 7, 1990 at Atlanta Falcons L 28-27
57,401
6 October 14, 1990 Cleveland Browns W 25-20
68,608
7 October 21, 1990 at Houston Oilers L 23-10
57,908
8 October 28, 1990 Detroit Lions L 27-10
64,368
9 November 4, 1990 at Cincinnati Bengals W 21-7
60,067
10 November 11, 1990 Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 35-7
67,865
11 November 18, 1990 at Washington Redskins L 31-17
52,573
12 November 25, 1990 Atlanta Falcons W 10-7
68,629
13 December 2, 1990 at Dallas Cowboys L 17-13
60,087
14 December 9, 1990 at Los Angeles Rams W 24-20
56,864
15 December 16, 1990 Pittsburgh Steelers L 9-6
68,582
16 December 23, 1990 at San Francisco 49ers W 13-10
60,112
17 December 31, 1990 Los Angeles Rams W 20-17
68,647

Standings

NFC West
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
San Francisco 49ers 14 2 0 .875 4–2 10–2 353 239 W1
New Orleans Saints 8 8 0 .500 4–2 6–6 274 275 W2
Los Angeles Rams 5 11 0 .313 2–4 3–9 345 412 L4
Atlanta Falcons 5 11 0 .313 2–4 3–9 348 365 W2
[4]

Playoffs

Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
Wildcard January 6, 1991 at Chicago Bears L 16-6
60,767

Awards and records

Milestones

References

External links

  • Saints on Pro Football Reference
  • Saints on jt-sw.com