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Roman Harper: Gregg Williams lit a fire, and we won’t let it burn out

williamsharper Getty Images

Before he was known as the leader of the Saints’ bounty program, Gregg Williams was known as one of the most intense and passionate coaches in the NFL. And while Williams is out of the NFL and may never return, the players who remain on the Saints say they’re not going to forget the intensity and passion that he brought to their defense.

Saints safety Roman Harper told the New Orleans Times-Picayune that even though Williams is gone and Steve Spagnuolo is the new defensive coordinator, the Saints’ players are still planning to play with the fire that Williams instilled in them.

I think we’ve still got that same fire burning up under us. You know, Gregg lit a fire that a lot of us aren’t going to let burn out. A sense of intensity,” Harper said. “And now we understand what it takes to win. Before I don’t think we understood it, and we didn’t have that complete feeling. But now we’ve been to the top of the mountain. We know what it takes to get there. And that’s what we’re trying to do now. It’s either Super Bowl or bust. And we won’t take anything less this year, no matter what our circumstances are.”

Saints safety Malcolm Jenkins said the NFL’s punishments for the Williams-run bounty program have given the Saints an us-against-the-world mentality this season.

“We already play with a chip on our shoulder, and I think everybody who comes into our defense carries that weight,” Jenkins said. “And you know, we’ve got more than a chip on our shoulders this year.”

Which means the presence of Williams is still being felt in New Orleans, even though it’s not his defense anymore.

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46 Responses to “Roman Harper: Gregg Williams lit a fire, and we won’t let it burn out”
  1. geo1113 says: May 27, 2012 7:20 AM

    “It’s either Super Bowl or bust. And we won’t take anything less this year, no matter what our circumstances are.”
    —————-

    Any player in the NFL without this attitude shouldn’t be in the NFL.

  2. emaimo80 says: May 27, 2012 7:47 AM

    Kill the head and the body will die!

  3. kwgator says: May 27, 2012 7:55 AM

    Where was this so called “fire” in the SF Playoff game last year

  4. deertay says: May 27, 2012 7:57 AM

    I wonder if he had to put in extra cash after being chased down by Bradford…

  5. labratre says: May 27, 2012 7:58 AM

    That’s right and our boys have it, that fire, that passion, love for the game. WHOOOOOOOOO DAAAAATTTT!

  6. 49er33 says: May 27, 2012 8:02 AM

    Seems all the Saints defensive players open their mouths like morons. I mean they did before Williams got caught and even after the fact. Just because New Orleans and the NFLPA is blind, doesn’t mean everyone else does.

    And they have this us against the world mentality when the put themselves in a world against them situation. They just need to shut up and play, but hey they could hardly injure players with late cheap shots. Look at all the ones Favre took at the end of plays.

    Irony they’re called Saint’s, and in a game where they had bounties against my 49ers they still got man handled.

  7. joemontanawasthegreatest says: May 27, 2012 8:19 AM

    Yeah a bunch of tough guys, trying to take out peoples MCL’s.

    That’s like kicking somebody in the balls and running away.

  8. tinopuno says: May 27, 2012 8:24 AM

    labratre says: May 27, 2012 7:58 AM

    That’s right and our boys have it, that fire, that passion, love for the game. WHOOOOOOOOO DAAAAATTTT!

    —————————————————–

    There’s no cure for ‘Dumb’.

  9. pcoisma says: May 27, 2012 8:25 AM

    New Orleans Times-Picayune
    Did not they just go bankrupt and closed the doors? Way to send off…

  10. prmpft says: May 27, 2012 8:34 AM

    niners fans talk alot of smack for a team that’s one & done…i personally will enjoy watching their season long meltdown this year – “getcha popcorn!”

  11. melikefootball says: May 27, 2012 8:44 AM

    The darlings of the South ain’t what they use to be, ain’t what they use to be.

  12. ricksaints says: May 27, 2012 9:07 AM

    I have a question. If bounties were still going on last season y during the pregame 49er video their isn’t any bounty talk. No talk about money being put into a pool to pay a player that would ” kill the head”. Dont u think that if it was really going on their would also be video evidence? Just sayin.

  13. tizomps says: May 27, 2012 9:08 AM

    Drew brees wants an explanation.

  14. gcsuk says: May 27, 2012 9:18 AM

    I’ll say “Bust”.

  15. thejuddstir says: May 27, 2012 9:30 AM

    ” But now we’ve been to the top of the mountain. We know what it takes to get there”………..hmm, how they going to cheat this year to “get to the top of the mountain”

  16. gingerkid2000 says: May 27, 2012 9:42 AM

    Greg Williams a great coach? Ask the Bills how great he was. A lot of talk then 3-13, 8-8 & 6-10 seasons. If you need to inspire people to play better by encouraging them to go after the head or the MCL of an injured player then you’re not that great of a coach.

  17. xsherr says: May 27, 2012 9:45 AM

    So are you admitting what you guys did, or are you still playing stupid?

  18. willkerns says: May 27, 2012 9:47 AM

    What about the bounty they put on Marshawn Lynch in the 2010 playoffs? Oh that’s right Lynch ran over the entire defense that day.

  19. laeaglefan says: May 27, 2012 9:52 AM

    The Saints of 2012 will be like the Colts of 2011….a once proud team reduced to the ashes of mediocrity.

  20. urcrap says: May 27, 2012 9:56 AM

    Cheater Williams is dead to the NFL. RIP.

  21. someidiotfromouthereintheprojects says: May 27, 2012 9:59 AM

    roman harper: he doesn’t always tackle. but when does tackle, he prefers cheap shots for bounties. stay thirsty

  22. footballfanatic1906 says: May 27, 2012 10:05 AM

    tinopuno says:
    May 27, 2012 8:24 AM
    labratre says: May 27, 2012 7:58 AM

    That’s right and our boys have it, that fire, that passion, love for the game. WHOOOOOOOOO DAAAAATTTT!

    —————————————————–

    WHOOOOOOOOO DAAAAATTTTT?

    YOUUUUUUUUU DAAAAATTTTT IDIIIOOTT!

  23. fballguy says: May 27, 2012 10:13 AM

    The Saints are in for a long, long season. Mark it down. 5-11 tops.

  24. goodellsadouche says: May 27, 2012 10:23 AM

    Laeaglefan you’d like to think that, but we’re gonna pound your team, that fat coach and that felon of a QB you have. Worry about keeping your idiot coach and QB’s job thru the end of this coming season.

  25. threedeep1998 says: May 27, 2012 10:24 AM

    niners fans talk alot of smack for a team that’s one & done…i personally will enjoy watching their season long meltdown this year – “getcha popcorn!”

    —–

    What? They beat your saints

  26. fsf7 says: May 27, 2012 10:24 AM

    kwgator says: May 27, 2012 7:55 AM

    Where was this so called “fire” in the SF Playoff game last year
    ___________________________________

    As I recall – that was a very competitive game that either team could have won. Just because they lost doesn’t mean they didn’t play with “fire”.

    If they were blown out of the game – maybe then the sarcastic comment about lacking fire would make sense. Just because you lost a game, doesn’t mean you have no “fire”

  27. joeysaints says: May 27, 2012 10:35 AM

    You know your team is awesome and feared when haters (all you fans of other teams) read these articles and then comment and leave negative posts. Such as predicting the saints to finish 5-11. If you were confident in your own team you wouldn’t waste your time here. Haters wanna hate.

  28. isphet71 says: May 27, 2012 10:43 AM

    I hope ‘Aints fans have those good ol’ paper bags in their closets handy. They are going to need them this year.

  29. leonbryte says: May 27, 2012 11:06 AM

    Roman Harper…”All talk, no cover.”

  30. nuclearwarfare says: May 27, 2012 11:21 AM

    Is it just me or is the whole “us against the world” mentality that so many NFL teams say they have a little stale and overused?

    The Pats get busted for SpyGate, they now have a chip on their shoulder and it’s “us against the world.”

    The Saints get nailed for bounties. Wouldn’t you know it, they now have a chip on their shoulder, too, and they believe it’s “us against the world.”

    To me, it seems like the only time a player or a team says that they want to prove something is when they get caught breaking the rules. ONLY THEN do they want to fight about it.

  31. freemanmvp says: May 27, 2012 11:34 AM

    Hey Harper! Every team in the NFL that play’s the Saints this year is gonna have a “Bigger Chip on There shoulder” thanks to Gregg Williams,Payton, Vitt and all you other cheaters! Oh, and every team thinks “it’s us against the world” cause it is.

  32. freemanmvp says: May 27, 2012 11:45 AM

    joeysaints says:May 27, 2012 10:35 AM

    You know your team is awesome and feared when haters (all you fans of other teams) read these articles and then comment and leave negative posts. Such as predicting the saints to finish 5-11. If you were confident in your own team you wouldn’t waste your time here. Haters wanna hate.

    Hey joey! Get use to it! Your “Great Team and Coach” tried to end our player’s career’s and we will NEVER FOGET IT!!!! No team fear’s the Cheating Saint’s .We all Love letting you Saints Fans Know how we feel about your arrogant Team,Coach’s and Fans!!! Karma is a bitch!!!!

  33. cali49er707 says: May 27, 2012 11:45 AM

    the 9ERS pissed on your fire & put it out like a campfire !!! your season flamed out just like greg williams football career!! the aints fans are being the exact cry babies they claim viking’s fans were over the NFCCG, get over it!!

    WE DAT
    WE DAT
    WE DAT TEAM DAT BEAT DEM AINTS!!!

  34. laeaglefan says: May 27, 2012 11:52 AM

    “Worry about keeping your idiot coach and QB’s job thru the end of this coming season”

    They will both have their jobs when the Eagles come into town and beat the Saints. For the past few years I would be dreading this game and chalk it up as a sure blowout loss, but now I feel that the Eagles have an excellent chance of coming out of there with a victory. Drew Brees is going to be scraping himself off of the ground the entire game!

  35. ejmat2 says: May 27, 2012 11:56 AM

    I guess Harper didn’t have the passion prior to this. Really? It takes a coach to have this mentality Harper?

  36. xxwhodatxx says: May 27, 2012 11:57 AM

    Trolls, get a life. Go back to whatever bridge you came out from under. Saints D didn’t put anyone in the hospital or cause any cart offs so take your hate and shove it. Wait till the season starts and your teams get steam rolled then come on here and cry about it.

  37. spreadthecheese says: May 27, 2012 11:58 AM

    The Saints vs. the world? I’m putting my money on the world, unless the Saints roll up the world’s knee when its back is turned.

  38. cwmorga says: May 27, 2012 12:06 PM

    49er33 says: May 27, 2012 8:02 AM

    …. and in a game where they had bounties against my 49ers they still got man handled.
    ——————

    Man handled? Despite 5 turnovers it still took a last second TD for the Niners to win.

    I give the Niners credit for the win, but “man handled”. Come on….

  39. kungfubillysims says: May 27, 2012 12:13 PM

    That chip will be knocked off your shoulder along with your head soon Malcolm.
    I’m not sure about you fans of other teams whom the Saints deliberately tried to injure but I’m pretty angry that, even after the league made them aware that they knew about the bounty program, they still had it in place against my Lions.
    The Saints are in for a long, rough season. No team is going to show these clowns one ounce of mercy.
    After all they were trying to take away peoples livelihoods.

  40. randallflagg52 says: May 27, 2012 12:24 PM

    As a Raven’s fan I find it cute that the Saint’s “defense” is getting so up in arms.

  41. dorian26 says: May 27, 2012 12:47 PM

    I dont understand how you can say the Niners “pissed” on the Saints…. The Saints had around 5 turnovers that game, and it still came down to the last possession, now if the roles were reversed and the Niners had 5 turnovers, The Saints wouldve probably won that game. For a team to have 5 turnovers and it still be that competitive is actually kinda pathetic if you ask me.

  42. saintswillwin says: May 27, 2012 1:06 PM

    49er33 says:
    May 27, 2012 8:02 AM
    Seems all the Saints defensive players open their mouths like morons. I mean they did before Williams got caught and even after the fact. Just because New Orleans and the NFLPA is blind, doesn’t mean everyone else does.

    And they have this us against the world mentality when the put themselves in a world against them situation. They just need to shut up and play, but hey they could hardly injure players with late cheap shots. Look at all the ones Favre took at the end of plays.

    Irony they’re called Saint’s, and in a game where they had bounties against my 49ers they still got man handled.

    Like your 40-whiners got man-handled by the Giants?

    If GW had played zone the last 1:37 of that game, the Saints would have been celebrating their 2nd Super Bowl win.

    The 40-whiners didn’t win that game; the Saints lost it!

  43. samapoc says: May 27, 2012 1:21 PM

    Heck yeah! I love hard nosed defenders. If the whole Saints defense was this tough they would have destroyed the 49ers. And lets face it, the 49ers only won because of the illegal hit on Pierre Thomas and a bunch of lucky turnovers. Lame.

  44. all32 says: May 27, 2012 1:52 PM

    A box of rocks is more interesting than a Saints fan…

  45. genericuser8888 says: May 27, 2012 3:16 PM

    The Saints had ZERO cart offs against them in 2009.

    Deal with it, haters, your teams got beaten fair and square.

  46. saintsfan83 says: May 27, 2012 3:32 PM

    freemanmvp Whenever you are on an active roster in the nfl let us no caus until then u can talk smack about what players remember about bounties it means nothing. WHO DAT!!! Coutinue beis the saints punching bag fucaneer fan

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