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Kenny gee

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New Orleans, La. -

In the Saints dramatic season opening win over division rival Atlanta four players were on the field for every defensive snap; Malcolm Jenkins, Curtis Lofton, Cam Jordan and Kenny Vaccaro.  The rookie safety from Texas made his mark throughout his first-ever NFL game, but nowhere was it more important than on the Saints final defensive snap.  In the closing seconds of the game, with the Falcons facing 4th and goal it was one play which became the difference between winning and losing.

Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan looked to his tight end Tony Gonzalez in the end zone and threw one high enough it looked like the former basketball player would be the only one who could catch it.. until Vaccaro leaped and tipped it away, then pushed Gonzalez away.  Saints safety Roman Harper is the one who caught it sealing the win for New Orleans.  Vaccaro said it was as much fun as he's ever had on a football field.

Earlier in the game Vaccaro was not having fun.  His sometimes over aggressive play had him lower a shoulder in to Ryan after the Falcons quarterback had slid following a scramble.  That drew a 15-yard penalty which moved the Falcons closer for a field goal that gave them a 10-0 lead.  Vaccaro told KTBS 3 Sports that he is not a head hunter or a "crazy man" and had it made clear that in the NFL, once the quarterback begins his slide he cannot be touched.

Vaccaro learned his lesson the hard way early.  The Falcons learned their lesson the hard way late; the Saints defense is much better than it was a year ago.

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