While his contributions may forever be overshadowed by those players with more extravagant numbers, Jimmy Rogers should at the very least be remembered for his rookie season of 1980. That was that dismal season that produced but 1 lone victory and will always be synonymous with the nickname “‘Aints” and heads hidden under bags. That season Jimmy was one of the few bright spots.
Rogers joined the Saints as a rookie free agent after spending 1979 on the practice squad of the Edmonton Eskimos in the Canadian Football League. Before the CFL he was part of an Oklahoma Sooner team that won National Championships in 1974 and 1975. There he teamed up with future NFL stars Billy Sims, Joe Washington and Elvis Peacock. During his rookie season he actually led the Saints in rushing with 366 yards and was was 8th in the NFL in All-Purpose Yards with 1563. He also enjoyed the Saints only 100+ yard rushing game that year. That was a 114 yard effort against the Redskins in week 8. His 10-yard score in that game was his only rushing touchdown of the year. He had 100+ return yards in 5 different games as well that year (the Saints returned a lot of kickoffs back then). And in the Saint’s only win of that season – a 21-20 decision over the Jets – he led all Saints runners with 52 yards.
When Bum Phillips arrived in 1981 former Heisman Trophy Award winner George Rogers from South Carolina joined the Saints. Jimmy would henceforth be known as the “Other Rogers”. He was used primarily as a kick returner in 1981 and saw special teams play and spot duty over his last couple of seasons in the league. In 1983 he recorded 15 tackles on Special Teams play. He left the Saints and football after the 1984 season.
In the picture above, Rogers (#41) breaks into the open field during a game against Pittsburgh in 1981. That game he returned 3 kicks averaging 32.0 yards-per-return. Despite his good showing the Saints still loss 6-20. The picture above also includes Wayne Wilson (#30), LSU Alumni Kenny Bordeleon (#50) and Scott Pelluer (#53).
Jimmy Rogers Career Statistics with the New Orleans Saints
Kick Return Statistics