Could These Former Saints Come Back In Free Agency?

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Just because I know you’re thinking about some other names that haven’t been mentioned yet, I had to end with the ones that I’m sure that will be mentioned mainly because of “nostalgia” — since we’ve seen how that has worked for the team on certain occasions (like bringing back former assistant coaches / players to the coaching staff recently such as Dennis Allen, Joe Lombardi, Dan Campbell, and Aaron Glenn) .

Reggie Bush

Nov 1, 2015; St. Louis, MO, USA; San Francisco 49ers running back Reggie Bush (23) runs the ball during the first half against the St. Louis Rams at the Edward Jones Dome. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Old Reggie probably won’t get to hear his named chanted in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome unless he’s being inducted into the Saints Hall of Fame.

In fairness the Saints were actually thinking of bringing Bush back last year but C.J. Spiller was signed instead, leaving Bush to sign with the San Francisco 49ers.

But just like his last few seasons with the Saints, injuries derailed him again with a knee injury in the beginning of the 2015 season and he only was active for five games.

Pierre Thomas

Dec 26, 2015; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Washington Redskins running back Pierre Thomas (39) gains yardage against Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Kiko Alonso (50) at Lincoln Financial Field. The Redskins defeated the Eagles, 38-24. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Perhaps one of the most beloved of the Saints running backs besides Deuce McAllister, his release from the Saints in 2015 tore the hearts out of many fans with my wife being one of those.

Many prayed he would be brought back on a cheaper deal but that wasn’t in the cards and Thomas made the free agent rounds where he nearly signed with the Houston Texans, but a squabble over what he was worth squashed that deal.

Like his former teammate Reggie Bush, he was with the 49ers briefly(one game) before signing with the Washington Redskins and was active for only four games, compiling a season total of 15 rushing attempts for 64 yards, 9 receptions for 84 yards, and zero…yes zero touchdowns.

It seems maybe the Saints saw the writing on the wall before Thomas did which is a sad story no matter which way you tell it.

Lance Moore

Aug 13, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions wide receiver Lance Moore (16) gets chased by New York Jets inside linebacker Demario Davis (56) during the first quarter of a preseason NFL football game at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

The dancing machine we all loved to see on the field with the infectious smile and signature first down signal is slowly fading from the memories of Saints fans.

Don’t get me wrong, we all remember what Moore did as a wide receiver for the team but there doesn’t seem to be any outpouring of tears by the team nor the fan base to bring Sir Lancelot back to New Orleans.

Moore was a cap casualty in 2014 after he was due to make over $3 million for that season with two years remaining on his contract.

He signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers that year and then in 2015 with the Detroit Lions — where he had marginal success but only started 10 games in each of the two seasons with both clubs.

Tracy Porter

Nov 16, 2014; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins cornerback Tracy Porter (22) breaks up a pass intended for Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Louis Murphy (18) in the second quarter at FedEx Field. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

It was rumored a few seasons back when Rob Ryan was defensive coordinator that the once loved cornerback was in talks with returning to the team.

That of course never materialized and the “Hero of Super Bowl 44” continued his journeyman route in free agency when he left the Saints in 2012 that included stops with the Denver Broncos (2012), Oakland Raiders (2013), Washington Redskins (2014), and Chicago Bears(2015).

I’ll admit that he looked decent at times with the Bears this past season but I try not to fall into the trap of clinging onto the shirt tails of sentimentality with PFF having him ranked 82nd out of 118 overall cornerbacks.

The two interceptions that helped the Saints reach the top of the mountain in 2009 will forever be remembered, but so should his abrupt spiral downward in performance after that.

At least Tracy Porter will never pay for a meal at any New Orleans restaurant, for the rest of his life.

The perks of being a life-long hero, in the Who Dat Nation……