|2012 New Orleans Saints season|
|Head coach||Joe Vitt (Interim, games 7-16)|
Aaron Kromer (Interim, games 1-6)
|General manager||Mickey Loomis (suspended for first 8 games)|
|Home field||Mercedes-Benz Superdome|
|Division place||3rd NFC South|
|Playoff finish||Did not qualify|
|Pro Bowlers||Drew Brees (QB)|
Jermon Bushrod (OT)
Jimmy Graham (TE)
Jahri Evans (G)
|AP All-Pros||Jahri Evans (1st team)|
The 2012 New Orleans Saints season was the franchise's 46th season in the National Football League, and the 37th with home games at the Superdome. It was going to be the seventh season under head coach Sean Payton; however, he was suspended by the NFL for the entire 2012 season as part of the punishment for the team's bounty scandal. On April 12, 2012, linebackers coach Joe Vitt was named interim head coach to replace Sean Payton while he served his one-year suspension. On August 22, 2012, it was announced that Aaron Kromer would take over while Vitt himself served a six-game suspension to start the regular season. The Saints attempted to make history as the first host team to play the Super Bowl on their own home field, but they were eliminated from post-season contention for the first time since 2008 in Week 16. The Saints set an NFL record for most yards given up by a defense, 7,042 yards, surpassing the 1981 Baltimore Colts record of 6,793 yards.
After his contract expired, defensive coordinator Gregg Williams was hired by the St. Louis Rams to the same position on January 16, 2012. Former Rams' head coach Steve Spagnuolo replaced Williams. Williams was later handed an indefinite suspension from the NFL for his role in the bounty scandal.
|WR||Andy Tanner||January 18, 2012|
|CB||Kamaal McIlwain||January 18, 2012||Released August 27, 2012.|
|OT||Phil Trautwein||January 18, 2012||Released May 15, 2012|
|OG||Nick Howell||January 18, 2012||Released May 15, 2012.|
|QB||Sean Canfield||January 18, 2012|
|CB||Josh Victorian||January 18, 2012||Released May 15, 2012|
|CB||Cord Parks||January 18, 2012||Released July 31, 2012. Re-Signed August 2, 2012. Released August 27, 2012.|
|OT||Fenuki Tupou||January 18, 2012||Placed on Injured Reserve August 20, 2012.|
|RB||Chris Taylor||January 18, 2012||Released June 8, 2012|
|DT||Mitch King||January 18, 2012|
|DT||Swanson Miller||January 19, 2012||Released August 27, 2012.|
|OG||Ben Grubbs||March 15, 2012||From the Baltimore Ravens|
|DT||Brodrick Bunkley||March 21, 2012||From the Denver Broncos|
|LB||Chris Chamberlain||March 23, 2012||From the St. Louis Rams. Placed on Injured Reserve August 20, 2012.|
|LB||Curtis Lofton||March 24, 2012||From the Atlanta Falcons|
|LB||David Hawthorne||April 3, 2012||From the Seattle Seahawks|
|WR||Courtney Roby||April 16, 2012||Re-Signed|
|CB||Jabari Greer||April 20, 2012||Re-Signed|
|LB||Jonathan Casillas||April 24, 2012||Re-Signed|
|K||John Kasay||April 26, 2012||Re-Signed|
|DT||Remi Ayodele||May 7, 2012||Released August 27, 2012.|
|CB||Marquis Johnson||May 11, 2012||From the St. Louis Rams|
|OT||Hutch Eckerson||May 14, 2012||Released August 27, 2012.|
|LB||Lawrence Wilson||May 15, 2012|
|CB||Elbert Mack||June 5, 2012||From the Tampa Bay Buccaneers|
|QB||Luke McCown||June 7, 2012||From the Jacksonville Jaguars. Released August 27, 2012.|
|QB||Drew Brees||July 13, 2012||Re-Signed|
|TE||Derek Schouman||July 24, 2012|
|DE||Alex Daniels||July 31, 2012|
|LB||Ramon Humber||August 6, 2012||Re-Signed|
|OG||Paul Fenaroli||August 11, 2012||Released August 27, 2012.|
|TE||Daniel Graham||August 11, 2012|
|WR||Greg Camarillo||August 20, 2012|
|LB||Barrett Ruud||August 20, 2012||From the Seattle Seahawks|
|2012 New Orleans Saints draft|
|3||89||Akiem Hicks *||DT||Regina|
|6||179||Andrew Tiller||OG||Syracuse||Pick from MIA[c]|
|Pro Football Hall of Fame Made at least one Pro Bowl during careerMade roster|
|LB||Kadarron Anderson||Furman||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp|
|WR||Malcolm Beyah||Middle Tennessee State||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp. Released June 13, 2012.|
|DE||Braylon Broughton||TCU||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp|
|TE||Jake Byrne||Wisconsin||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp. Released August 27, 2012.|
|RB||Travaris Cadet||Appalachian State||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp|
|DB||A.J. Davis||Jacksonville State||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp. Placed on Injured Reserve August 11, 2012. Released August 18, 2012.|
|C||Brian Folkerts||Washburn||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp. Released August 27, 2012.|
|WR||Chris Givens||Miami (OH)||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp. Placed on Injured Reserve August 2, 2012.|
|S||Jose Gumbs||Monmouth||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp|
|WR||Kevin Hardy||The Citadel||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp. Released July 24, 2012. Re-signed August 6, 2012. Released August 27, 2012.|
|OT||Dan Hoch||Missouri||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp. Released May 15, 2012.|
|LB||Stephen Johnson||Temple||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp. Released May 15, 2012.|
|S||Jerico Nelson||Arkansas||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp|
|RS||Laron Scott||Georgia Southern||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp. Releases August 6, 2012.|
|OT||Aderious Simmons||Arizona State||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp|
|LB||Aaron Tevis||Boise State||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp. Released August 27, 2012.|
|S||Johnny Thomas||Oklahoma State|
|DE/DT||Tyrunn Walker||Tulsa||Added to the team roster on April 30, will participate in rookie mini-camp|
|OG||DeOn'tae Pannell||Penn State||Added to the team roster on May 15 after participating in rookie mini-camp|
|DB||Nick Hixson||Hillsdale||Added to the team roster on May 15 after participating in rookie mini-camp. Released June 8, 2012. Re-Signed August 11, 2012.|
|OG||Scott Winnewisser||California (PA)||Signed May 29, 2012. Placed on Injured Reserve August 6, 2012.|
|RB||Joe Banyard||UTEP||Signed June 7, 2012.|
|WR||Derek Moye||Penn State||Claimed off waivers from the Miami Dolphins on June 13, 2012. Released August 27, 2012.|
|LB||Donavan Robinson||Jackson State||Signed June 22, 2012. Released August 27, 2012.|
|WR||Marques Clark||Henderson State||Signed July 24, 2012. Released August 27, 2012.|
|Week||Date||Opponent||Final score||Record||Game site||NFL.com|
|HOF||August 5||vs. Arizona Cardinals||W 17-10||1-0||Fawcett Stadium (Canton, Ohio)||Recap|
|1||August 9||at New England Patriots||L 6-7||1-1||Gillette Stadium||Recap|
|2||August 17||Jacksonville Jaguars||L 24-27||1-2||Mercedes-Benz Superdome||Recap|
|3||August 25||Houston Texans||W 34-27||2-2||Mercedes-Benz Superdome||Recap|
|4||August 30||at Tennessee Titans||L 6-10||2-3||LP Field||Recap|
|Week||Date||Opponent||Final score||Record||Game site||NFL.com|
|1||September 9||Washington Redskins||L 32-40||0-1||Mercedes-Benz Superdome||Recap|
|2||September 16||at Carolina Panthers||L 27-35||0-2||Bank of America Stadium||Recap|
|3||September 23||Kansas City Chiefs||L 24-27 (OT)||0-3||Mercedes-Benz Superdome||Recap|
|4||September 30||at Green Bay Packers||L 27-28||0-4||Lambeau Field||Recap|
|5||October 7||San Diego Chargers||W 31-24||1-4||Mercedes-Benz Superdome||Recap|
|7||October 21||at Tampa Bay Buccaneers||W 35-28||2-4||Raymond James Stadium||Recap|
|8||October 28||at Denver Broncos||L 14-34||2-5||Sports Authority Field at Mile High||Recap|
|9||November 5||Philadelphia Eagles||W 28-13||3-5||Mercedes-Benz Superdome||Recap|
|10||November 11||Atlanta Falcons||W 31-27||4-5||Mercedes-Benz Superdome||Recap|
|11||November 18||at Oakland Raiders||W 38-17||5-5||O.co Coliseum||Recap|
|12||November 25||San Francisco 49ers||L 21-31||5-6||Mercedes-Benz Superdome||Recap|
|13||November 29||at Atlanta Falcons||L 13-23||5-7||Georgia Dome||Recap|
|14||December 9||at New York Giants||L 27-52||5-8||MetLife Stadium||Recap|
|15||December 16||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||W 41-0||6-8||Mercedes-Benz Superdome||Recap|
|16||December 23||at Dallas Cowboys||W 34-31 (OT)||7-8||Cowboys Stadium||Recap|
|17||December 30||Carolina Panthers||L 38-44||7-9||Mercedes-Benz Superdome||Recap|
With the loss, the Saints started their season 0-1.
With the loss, the Saints fell to 0-2.
With the close loss, the Saints fell to 0-3.
With the loss, the Saints face their first 0-4 start since 2007.
Drew Brees broke Johnny Unitas' record of consecutive games with a touchdown in the first quarter. The record touchdown was witnessed by Unitas' son Joe. With the surprising win, the Saints go into their bye week at 1-4.
With the win, the Saints improved to 2-4. Also, QB Drew Brees increased his number of consecutive games with a touchdown pass to 49.
With the loss, the Saints fell to 2-5. However, despite the loss, QB Drew Brees increased his record of consecutive games with a touchdown pass to 50.
With the win, the Saints improved to 3-5. Also, QB Drew Brees increased his streak of games with at least one passing touchdown to 51.
After their huge win over the Eagles, the Saints stayed home for a game against their heated rival Falcons. Sitting at 3-5, the Falcons came into this game at 8-0. The Saints surprisingly won their 4th-straight game against the Falcons and improved their record to 4-5 while the Falcons dropped to 8-1. Drew Brees brought his total of games with a passing touchdown to 52.
After 2 straight dominant home wins, the Saints traveled to Oakland to take on the Raiders. The Saints again dominated this game after the Raiders took the first points of the game. The Saints would win and improve to 5-5 on the season keeping their playoff hopes alive. Also Drew Brees brought his streak of at least 1 passing touchdown in a single game to 53.
The loss dropped the team to 5-6, but Brees' record of games with at least 1 passing touchdown stood at 54.
After the tough road loss to the Niners, the Saints traveled to take on the Falcons in a TNF matchup. The Saints' 4-game winning streak against the Falcons would be snapped as the team dropped to 5-7. Also, QB Drew Brees' streak of consecutive games with at least 1 passing touchdown would come to an end as he threw a career-high 5 interceptions in one game on the night. Regardless, his total passing touchdowns at this point was 31 bringing him his 5th straight season with 30+ passing touchdowns.
With the win, The Saints improved to 6-8 and swept the Buccaneers for the first time since 2006 and posted their first shutout win since 1995 to the New York Jets 12-0
With the win, the Saints improved to 7-8. However, the Saints were eliminated from postseason contention, thus rendering them unable to play Super Bowl XLVII on their own home turf (as of 2018, no team has done this in Super Bowl history).
With the loss, the Saints finished with their first losing season since 2007 at 7-9. Also, the team was swept by the Panthers for the first time since 2008.
|New Orleans Saints||7||9||0||.438||3-3||5-7||461||454||L1|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||7||9||0||.438||3-3||4-8||389||394||W1|