SBD/Issue 185/Franchises

Saints Execs, Players, Coaches Visit Louisiana's Oil-Soaked Coast

Four busloads of Saints players, coaches, management and staff yesterday "journeyed nearly as far south in Louisiana as possible to support those victimized" by the BP oil spill, according to Glenn Guilbeau of the SHREVEPORT TIMES. Saints Owner Tom Benson, coach Sean Payton and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal addressed the "several hundred Plaquemines Parish residents" during the trip. Saints co-Owner & Exec VP Rita Benson LeBlanc said, "This environmental, economic and global disaster is truly heartbreaking. ... We all stand together asking that our country not go deaf about the people of this region and the troubles they are experiencing today." Benson added, "Today we were supposed to be in Baton Rouge with the governor. But one of the players said, 'Hey, look, if we've got problems down there, we should go down there.'" Guilbeau notes Saints QB Drew Brees yesterday announced the team's plan to "raise money for victims of the oil disaster through a raffle that will reward a Super Bowl ring to a Saints fan before kickoff" of the Sept. 9 Vikings-Saints game at the Superdome. The team hopes to raise $1M (SHREVEPORT TIMES, 6/9). In New Orleans, Mike Triplett notes fans "can buy raffle tickets for $2 apiece." The team yesterday also brought along the Lombardi Trophy (New Orleans TIMES-PICAYUNE, 6/9).

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