The 2009 New Orleans Saints season is the franchise's 43rd season in the National Football League (NFL) and the most successful in franchise history in which they won Super Bowl XLIV. The Saints recorded a franchise record 13 regular season victories, an improvement on their 8–8 record and fourth place finish in the National Football Conference (NFC)'s southern division from 2008. As a result, the Saints advanced to the playoffs for the first time since 2006. For head coach Sean Payton, this was his fourth season with the franchise, commanding a club overall record of 36–24. With a victory over the Carolina Panthers on November 8, they jumped out to an 8-0 start, the best in franchise history. They would go on to set the record for the longest undefeated season opening (13–0) by an NFC team since the AFL–NFL merger, eclipsing the previous record (12–0) held by the 1985 Chicago Bears.
Although losing the last three games of the season to finish 13–3, the team clinched a playoff berth, a first-round bye and—for the first time ever—the top seed in the NFC. The Saints defeated the Arizona Cardinals in the NFC Divisional playoffs, and proceeded to host the NFC Championship Game for the first time in franchise history. There, they defeated the Minnesota Vikings to face the Indianapolis Colts at Super Bowl XLIV in the franchise's first-ever Super Bowl appearance, which they won to give the city of New Orleans its first world championship. The Saints are the first team to defeat three former Super Bowl winning quarterbacks in a row in the playoffs to win the Super Bowl.
Although five Saints were elected to the Pro Bowl (with two others added as injury replacements), since the game was held one week prior to Super Bowl XLIV, they did not participate.
Read more about 2009 New Orleans Saints Season: Preseason
Famous quotes containing the words saints and/or season:
“So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are citizens with the saints and also members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the cornerstone. In him the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are built together spiritually into a dwelling place for God.”
—Bible: New Testament, Ephesians 2:19-22.
“The morning, which is the most memorable season of the day, is the awakening hour. Then there is least somnolence in us; and for an hour, at least, some part of us awakes which slumbers all the rest of the day and night.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)