Saints evacuate to Dallas as Ida strikes Louisiana

Published 5:33 pm Sunday, August 29, 2021

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The New Orleans Saints are planning to practice at the home of the Dallas Cowboys for three days this week after evacuating because of Hurricane Ida, a person with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press on Sunday.

The team is scheduled to hold workouts Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at AT&T Stadium before taking a break heading into the regular season, according to the person who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the club wasn’t discussing its plans publicly. The Saints are supposed to open at home Sept. 12 against Green Bay.

With the storm approaching the coast late last week, the Saints canceled Friday’s preseason finale against Arizona that had been scheduled for Saturday night.

Ida made landfall south of New Orleans on Sunday as a powerful Category 4 hurricane with winds of 150 mph, one of the most powerful storms ever to strike the U.S.

The arrival of Ida came 16 years to the day after Katrina devastated New Orleans. The Saints were forced to move for the entire 2005 season, setting up operations in San Antonio while playing home games there and in Baton Rouge at LSU. New Orleans also played one game at Giants Stadium.

The Saints have also had to move their operations several other times because of hurricanes.

In 2004, the Saints practiced for three days during the preseason in San Antonio to get out of Hurricane Ivan’s way. They migrated to Indianapolis for a few days in 2008 ahead of Hurricane Gustav, and then they followed suit a few years later in 2012 to Cincinnati because of Hurricane Isaac.