'We just felt like everyone is behind us': The Saints beat Atlanta in a post-Katrina return to the Superdome Featured | NOLA.com


The Saints last played in the Dome on Aug. 26, 2005. The players and fans focused on how Jim Haslett, Aaron Brooks and Co. would look against Baltimore with two weeks before a make-or-break season.

It's no stretch to believe many players and thousands of fans came to the Dome that night facing the threat of a hurricane, but like many other storms before, taking for granted the Saints would be back on the field, winning or losing, to host the Giants in Week 2 of the regular season.

The Saints lost to Baltimore 21-6. Brooks went 10 of 20 passing for 139 yards. Deuce McAllister rushed for 29 yards on nine carries. Joe Horn hauled in five passes for 63 yards. There wasn't a major sense of encouragement surrounding the Saints leaving the loss.

After Katrina struck, suddenly, players faced the same daunting challenges as many of the homeless and displaced people of the region. They were disenfranchised and depressed. They lived vagabond existences rarely knowing what to expect the next day, much less their long-term future.

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