Bobby Hebert: Benson brought me home to Louisiana

Sports Talk with Bobby Hebert
March 15, 2018 - 8:57 pm

With the passing of Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson today, WWL’s Bobby Hebert had his own reflections on his relationship with the man who made him a star quarterback in his home state.

“You know who’s the #1 player when Mr. Benson owned the team – I don’t know if this was good or bad – that they were trying to get Saints fans excited about? It was me! Think about that. I’m going to the Seattle Seahawks, leaving Oakland. The USFL is no longer.

“Mr. Benson brought me here. I knew coming back to Louisiana, you’ll either be the hero or the goat. Can you win? If you win, you’ll be the hero. If not, they’ll run you out of town. I felt confident. Go back home and play for the Saints? That’s a dream come true.”

Hebert also highlighted how Benson made sure the Saints franchise stayed put in Louisiana, buying the team in 1985 from John Mecom, Jr.

“The other thing, I know this is a fact, without Mr. Benson… the Saints were moving to Jacksonville. If they’d have left, New Orleans might never have [another> NFL franchise.

“Within two years, in 1987 we won nine games in a row. We had a winning season with Mr. Benson as the owner. I thank Mr. Benson for giving me the opportunity to play in New Orleans and come back to my home state. He didn’t necessarily know football, but he learned the process of being an NFL owner and was very supportive, and he was going to do anything to bring a winner to New Orleans.”

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