New Orleans Saints 2009 NFL Super Bowl Football Championship Ring
The 2009 New Orleans Saints season was the franchise's 43rd season in the National Football League (NFL). It was the most successful season in franchise history, culminating with a victory in Super Bowl XLIV. The Saints recorded a franchise record 13 regular season victories (later tied in the 2011 season), an improvement on their 8–8 record and fourth-place finish in the National Football Conference (NFC)'s southern division from 2008. As a result, the Saints advanced to the playoffs for the first time since 2006. For head coach Sean Payton, this was his fourth season with the franchise, commanding a club overall record of 36–24.
With a victory over the Carolina Panthers on November 8, the Saints jumped out to an 8–0 start, the best in franchise history. They would go on to set the record for the longest undefeated season opening (13–0) by an NFC team since the AFL–NFL merger, eclipsing the previous record (12–0) held by the 1985 Chicago Bears. This record has since been tied by the 2011 Green Bay Packers and surpassed by the 2015 Carolina Panthers. Although losing the last three games of the season to finish 13–3, the team clinched a playoff berth, a first-round bye and—for the first time ever—the top seed in the NFC. The Saints defeated the Arizona Cardinals in the NFC Divisional playoffs, and proceeded to host the NFC Championship Game for the first time in franchise history. There, they defeated the Minnesota Vikings in overtime, then went on to face the Indianapolis Colts at Super Bowl XLIV in the franchise's first-ever Super Bowl appearance. The Saints won the Super Bowl 31-17, giving the city of New Orleans its first world championship. The Saints are the first team to defeat three former Super Bowl winning quarterbacks in a row in the playoffs to win the Super Bowl. The Saints along with the New York Jets and Tampa Bay Buccaneers are the only teams to go to one Super Bowl and win it.
Although five Saints were elected to the Pro Bowl (with two others added as injury replacements), since the game was held one week prior to Super Bowl XLIV, they did not participate.