The 2017 NFL Draft saved the New Orleans Saints

By RICK CLEVELAND,

The New Orleans Saints were in a funk.

For three straight seasons, they won seven games and lost nine. In the NFL, that classifies as a rut – a bad rut.

So how did they get out of the rut in this magical season that has seen them win 11 regular season games, the NFC South Division title and a first-round playoff game?






CLEVELAND: With 2 games left, a look at instate teams

By RICK CLEVELAND,

One wag's opinion on a number of subjects:

• Not to belittle Mississippi State's monumental effort in a heart-wrenching, 31-24 defeat to No. 1-ranked Alabama last Saturday night, but the Crimson Tide has some serious issues at linebacker. If not solved, Alabama will have a difficult time even making the college football playoffs.



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