With no plans to resign, Haslett uncertain about future
SAN ANTONIO -- Another loss has done nothing to clarify the future of New Orleans Saints coach Jim Haslett.
Haslett said Monday he has no plans to resign following a 27-10 loss Sunday to the Carolina Panthers, dropping the Saints to 3-11 in their worst season under the sixth-year coach.
Haslett, who has one year remaining on his contract, added that Saints owner Tom Benson is "stressed out" with other issues facing the hurricane-disrupted Saints instead of immediately determining his future.
"It's been a hard couple of months for him," Haslett said. "He's got tough decisions ahead of him. He's got other things on his mind."
Benson was in New York on Monday attending to team business with the NFL and was unavailable for comment. A committee of eight other NFL owners is scheduled to meet Tuesday to discuss the problems facing the Saints in post-hurricane New Orleans.
Haslett said he's not had a serious talk with Benson this season about a new contract. Haslett said he had no plans to meet with Benson on Monday and will wait for a meeting to be arranged.
"It's his timeframe, his team," Haslett said.
Haslett added he realizes his status is a distraction for him and the team, the latest in a crowd of distractions hovering over the Saints.
The issues in front of the franchise include where the team will base its operations and play home games next season and when players will meet with NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue.
The team endured another facility change last week when the NCAA women's volleyball tournament forced the Saints from the Alamodome and moved their locker rooms to a nearby high school baseball field.
Additionally, the Saints made a quarterback change last week when Aaron Brooks was benched after starting 82 consecutive games. It happened on the same day players met with NFL Players' Association executive director Gene Upshaw in hopes of finding out where the team will be based next season.
Haslett said he hopes the Saints can overcome the distractions in their remaining two games.
"Let's let it go till the season is over and try to win a game," Haslett said. "Let's see if we can concentrate on a game this week and not concentrate on union matters, facility matters, not Jim Haslett, not every other thing that's going on. If [Tagliabue] comes, he comes. Who cares?"
The Saints finish the season against Detroit in the Alamodome on Saturday and at Tampa Bay on Jan. 1.
Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press
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