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nola.com: Thomas Morstead relives emotional draft day

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nola.com: Thomas Morstead relives emotional draft day

Postby PonyPride » Sat Apr 25, 2020 10:26 am

From nola.com:

THOMAS MORSTEAD, 5TH ROUND, 2009

The Philadelphia Eagles were on the clock, and Thomas Morstead looked down at his ringing phone to see a 504 area code.

Morstead, who's from Houston, didn't know that 504 meant New Orleans. Saints general manager Mickey Loomis was on the line. Morstead knows that now, but at the time he wasn't sure who he was talking to.

"'How would you like to punt in a dome for the rest of your career?'" Morstead remembers Loomis saying. "I remember thinking, No. 1, sweet. No. 2, my brain was trying to scan 'Who are all the dome teams' to try to figure it out. I just said, 'That sounds great. Thank you, sir.'"

Loomis then handed the phone to coach Sean Payton, who asked how Morstead was. Morstead acknowledged he was fired up, but confused.

"'The Eagles are on the clock," Morstead remembers saying.

Payton responded, "'We're about to trade with them to draft you.'"

Morstead replied, "'Well, I don't believe you.'"

Morstead said Payton thought that was funny and told him to keep his eye on the TV.

Sure enough, with the No. 164 pick in the 2009 NFL Draft, the Saints picked Morstead and his mom started screaming.

"'Oh my God, six hours down I-10,'" Morstead remembers his mom saying. "... I just remember her screaming. It's kind of cathartic, almost. It gives me chills even sharing that."

Moments after getting picked, Morstead was out the door to see his SMU special teams coach. But the celebration was a somber one.

Frank Gansz Sr. coached Morstead in 2008 and was comatose in the hospital after having complications from knee replacement surgery.

Morstead sat by his coach's side for 20-30 minutes, talking with Gansz's soon-to-be widow, Barbara — someone who Morstead looked to like a grandmother after that emotional week.


Gansz died the next day.

"I just remember feeling total elation and then I just remember I started sobbing," Morstead said. "... It was happy and sad tears in like two, three minutes. It was kind of a weird day, if that makes sense. It was emotional in a lot of ways."

To read about other Saints' draft experiences: https://www.nola.com/sports/saints/arti ... 87563.html
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Re: nola.com: Thomas Morstead relives emotional draft day

Postby AusTxPony » Sat Apr 25, 2020 11:48 am

Thanks for posting. Great kid.
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Re: nola.com: Thomas Morstead relives emotional draft day

Postby Charleston Pony » Sat Apr 25, 2020 11:53 am

Frank Gansz was such a great special teams coach...we owe that one year to JJ for luring him out of retirement to coach ST at SMU. Wish we could have had him around for years.
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