Cardinals-Saints kickoff canceled as Ida threatens Louisiana

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JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA – OCTOBER 13: A New Orleans Saints helmet is seen on the bench during the game between the New Orleans Saints and the Jacksonville Jaguars at TIAA Bank Field on October 13, 2019 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)

UPDATE: Aug. 27, 4:45 p.m. — The New Orleans Saints announced that the pre-season finale against the Arizona Cardinals has been canceled.

FULL STATEMENT

The New Orleans Saints announced Friday, Aug. 27 that due to the impending impact of Hurricane Ida on the Gulf Coast region that the team’s preseason game against the Arizona Cardinals has been canceled. The game, which was originally scheduled for 7 p.m. Saturday, Aug 28 was moved to noon at the Caesars Superdome. Due to the intensification of the hurricane throughout the day and after the most recent tropical update, the team’s leadership has made the decision in the best interests of all personnel that may have been directly and indirectly affected by the storm. This announcement comes after constant communications with City of New Orleans officials, the National Weather Service, Homeland Security, Governor Edwards leading state officials and the National Football League. The team encourages all residents of the region to take precautionary measures to remain safe throughout the impending hurricane. The Saints will be in communication with season ticket account holders regarding applicable refunds and/or credits to their season ticket accounts.


NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Kickoff for Saturday’s preseason game between the Arizona Cardinals and the Saints at the Superdome has been moved up seven hours because of the potential for Hurricane Ida to hit the Louisiana coast by Sunday.

The Saints announced the game will start at noon Central Time and that the change was agreed upon after consultation with city officials in New Orleans, the National Weather Service, The Department of Homeland Security, and the NFL.

Ida struck Cuba on Friday showing hallmarks of a rare, rapidly intensifying storm that could speed across warm Gulf waters and slam into Louisiana as a Category 3 hurricane on Sunday, the National Hurricane Center warned.

If so, the storm would strike the Louisiana coast 16 years to the day after Hurricane Katrina leveled parts of the Mississippi Coast and ruptured storm protection levees around New Orleans on Aug. 29, 2005, causing about 80% of the city to be affected by flooding that in some neighborhoods left only roofs above water.

The Saints also had a preseason game the Saturday night before Katrina struck a little more than 24 hours later and the team wound up being displaced to San Antonio for all of the 2005 regular season. The Saints played just four home games in Louisiana that year, all at LSU’s Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge. The Saints also played three home games in San Antonio’s Alamo Dome and one in Giants Stadium.

New Orleans’ levee system has been rebuilt and upgraded since Katrina, but marshlands that historically helped protect the city from storm surge have steadily thinned because of coastal erosion, and the city’s pumping system has struggled in recent years to handle heavy rains before it fills streets and sometimes invades homes and businesses in certain neighborhoods, some of which lie below sea level.

Saturday’s game with Arizona is the preseason finale for both clubs and it is unclear how many snaps starters will play in what is the last chance to players on the fringes of each roster to audition for a regular-season job.

The Saints are scheduled to open the regular season in the Superdome against Green Bay on Sept. 12.

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