Talk about a defining moment for the 2016 New Orleans Saints.
They have a chance to get over .500 on Sunday for the first time in nearly three years — and it comes against the reigning Super Bowl champion Denver Broncos inside the Superdome.
The Saints (4-4) also have a chance to buck an eerily familiar trend that has haunted them for almost half of the Sean Payton-Drew Brees era.
The Saints started 0-3 this season, the Derek Cox Authentic Jersey fifth time in 10 years that they have started either 0-4 (2007 and 2012), 0-3 (2015 and 2016) or 1-3 (2014). And in all five years, they fought back to .500 by the middle of November. But in the previous four years, the Saints never got past .500. In fact, they lost a home game every single time they had a chance to get above .500. And they finished 7-9 each time.
But Celek made the team and has found a niche on the roster. Although he didn’t get to follow his aspirations of joining the service, he has close friends in the armed forces and said football appeals to him in part because there’s a similar type of bond that forms in a locker room.
“What those guys do is an amazing thing, and I have a lot of respect for them,” Celek said. “What we do in the community is we get to go out and Eric Kendricks Authentic Jersey meet with those guys, try to make their week, make their day, make their year, whatever it is. For me, it feels good doing something like that. I think I like the aspect — like with football you have the team and the locker room, and then in the military it’s like the same atmosphere, you’ve got your buddies, a close-knit group of guys and I’ve always liked that.”
Celek, 28, figures to still have plenty of football in front of him, and he just signed a four-year contract extension with the 49ers in February. Though he said he has given some thought to walking away to enlist in the military, he doesn’t see that in his future right now.
“I always think about doing like the Pat Tillman deal,” Celek said. “But I don’t know. My wife, I always talk about it and she gets pretty upset with me when I mention it. She doesn’t want me to do it, because she worries about me. Right now at this point in my life, probably not.”
In lieu of that, Celek plans to continue to spend time visiting with and supporting the military. And when he’s not doing that, he can always chat with his 85-year old grandfather, who started a general contracting company after his time in the military, still does some carpentry work in the Cincinnati area and is always good for a few stories.