50 New Orleans Saints Seasons: 1968
The New Orleans Saints completed their 50th season in the NFL at the conclusion of the 2016 campaign.
All summer long, we’ll spotlight each and every season that the team has played.
Yesterday, we took a look at the inaugural season, 1967.
Today, we go back to 1968.
After a 3-11 season in 1967, there was optimism that the Saints could improve upon that in their second season.
Things looked pretty good early, as the Saints were 3-3 after their first six games, and there were actually playoff whispers among fans.
Those thoughts proved to be premature, and wishful thinking however, as the team was winless in their next 7 games, finishing with 6 losses and a tie over that stretch, before defeating the Pittsburgh Steelers, 24-14, in their season finale.
The Saints did improve under head coach Tom Fears, going 4-9-1, which was good enough for third place in the Century Division, finishing behind the Cleveland Browns and the St. Louis Cardinals.
That 4-9-1 record, while certainly not playoff material, was the best record ever for a second-year expansion team.
The offense was better in 1968, led by Billy Kilmer, who emerged as the starting quarterback, throwing for 2,060 yards and 15 touchdowns.
Don McCall paced the team in rushing, accumulating 637 yards and 4 touchdowns.
Second-year receiver Danny Abramowicz continued to impress, compiling 54 catches for 890 yards and 7 scores, while Dave Parks, who the team acquired from the San Francisco 49ers, proved to be a quality pick-up, catching 25 passes for 258 yards, the first of a solid five-year stretch in New Orleans, in which he caught 149 passes.
Defensively, Dave Rowe led the way, being named to the Pro Bowl.
View some 1968 New Orleans Saints highlights, below: