BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Normally, area football fans have to drive to New Orleans to see their favorite Saints players. But, for one day only, the Black and Gold brought the fanfare to the Coast. The third-annual Saints Hall of Fame Weekend spanned a full day of celebration in South Mississippi.
"I always tell people I think we're more of a Gulf South region team instead of just a New Orleans team," Saints Hall of Fame member and team ambassador Michael Lewis said. "We like to get outside of the region and do things like over here in Mississippi. Mississippi has some of the best fans. They're Saints fans, and they come out and they support just as well as anybody else in New Orleans."
The celebrations were a chance to bring together Saints standouts, past and present, and to honor the newest inductees into the Saints Hall of Fame, Super Bowl XLIV champions Lance Moore and Pierre Thomas.
"It means a lot," Thomas told WLOX. "(Saints fans) always have your back when times are good or bad, and they always ride for their players and their team. I really appreciate it, and I always say New Orleans fans got me on the team, they pulled for me during my rookie year."
The day began at Fallen Oak, as dozens of area patrons got to enjoy a casual golf scramble with some of the finest to ever play for New Orleans. Then the team held a free safety clinic for parents outside of MGM Park, before being the guests of honor at the Shuckers' game against the M-Braves.
"It's great for us to be back (together)," said Willie Roaf, a member of both the Saints and NFL Halls of Fame. "It's great to hang out, see a lot of guys you played with, and then all the guys that played over the years who helped create the Saints legacies. It's always fun to hang out with the guys and have a good time."