The glow from the TV served as a night light for 11-year-old Malcolm Roach. Rest assured, the outcome of what unfolded on his screen would never change. He could close his eyes and doze off to the familiar background noise.
When Roach was in sixth grade, the New Orleans Saints defeated the Indianapolis Colts to win Super Bowl XLIV on Feb. 7, 2010. His parents recorded the game. And in order to get their youngest son to bed early enough on school nights — between 9:30 and 10 p.m. — they’d play the DVD for him in their Louisiana home.
“I’d watch the first two drives, and I’d end up going to sleep,” Roach said. “It was like a lullaby to me.”
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Now 24 years old, Roach is a defensive tackle for the Saints. On March 22, he signed a one-year contract extension to remain in New Orleans. The 2023 season will mark his fourth, both in the league and with the franchise.
“I’m more than excited I get to stay home, stay close to my family,” Roach said. “It’s something I’ve been dreaming about since I was a little kid. For the dream to keep going, I’m just grateful.”
Roach is a Baton Rouge native, born and raised. He and his family — father Mike, mother Nancy and older brother Mike Jr. — lived together in Greenwood, a subdivision on the outskirts of the city. Malcolm’s parents were from the Belfair area.
“Where I grew up and where my husband grew up, we call that the hood,” Nancy said. “We would make sure our sons would go back into the hood to see how we grew up, how we were.
“People were so close. Not that we had everything growing up, but our parents made sure we had everything we needed and most of what we wanted. So, we wanted that type of atmosphere for them.”
The Roach household had three rules to keep the boys out of trouble — go to school, participate in church and play sports year-round.