Here are things to look for in tonight’s prime-time matchup between New Orleans and Philly:
1. If Philly runs the ball, then the Eagles will have a very good chance to come away with a win. Running the football would take a lot of pressure off QB Mike Vick. Vick is still a dangerous QB that many have been waiting to have a breakout game. Will tonight be the game that Vick does break out? If McCoy runs the ball well there will be far less pressure on Vick.
2. Can the Saints defense stop anyone? It has not happened in seven games, so maybe the eighth game is the one the Saints slow down an opponent. New Orleans allowed at least 400 yards to each of their foes this season, and 500 yards on three occasions. Come on, man! Even if you play bad you should not be giving up this many yards, right? A year after the Saints offense set so many records, now the defense is doing the same. The Saints D became the first team to allow 400-plus yards in seven consecutive games since 1950. Who dat? Dey dat!
3. Do it without a strong Brees? Have the Saints ever won a game or two where Drew Brees did not have to carry the load? Right now the only shot the Saints have in games is #9’s play. New Orleans can’t run the football, and far too many times early deficits in games make the Saints play catch-up. So if Brees struggles tonight like he did a week ago against Denver, will someone step up and lend a hand?
4. Last straw for New Orleans – This is it for the Saints. New Orleans may already be out of the mix in the NFC playoff hunt, but due to the Eagles’ division, Philly is still in the mix in the NFC East. No one can catch the Falcons in the South, and trying to keep up with the other teams in the NFC for a Wild Card spot is slowing drifting away for the Saints.
The pick – Both teams were considered two of the top four in the conference to make it to the Super Bowl, and now each are on the cusp of falling completely apart. I’ll give the nod to the Eagles here and say Philly wins by a late field goal.
Philadelphia Eagles (3-4) @ New Orleans Saints (2-5)
Series History: Eagles lead 15-10
Last week’s results: Denver beat New Orleans 24-14 and Atlanta beat Philadelphia 30-17
8-0-0, Saints And the man going to dallas days are over!
Sean Payton will be back to coach the Saints.
The RG circus continues. There will be something every week from the NFL that is contrived, until the Saints are mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. During the week of the Super Bowl, the NFL network discussed how the league officials were reviewing some the Saints offensive formations that could be flagged during the Super Bowl game. Also, emphasis was made about the potential of late hits on Peyton Manning. Sean Payton came back with the comments that the Saints were reviewing the officiating crew for their tendencies and that the Saints would eliminate those plays from their playbook. Without, SP, it is very difficult for any coach on the Saints staff to deal with all the RG head games. It takes tact, diplomacy, smarts, quick wit, and the ability to out think your opponent no matter what they stack against you. This is why SP won the Super Bowl when the deck was stacked. Take for example the on sides kick and how SP addressed it with the officials right after half time with Mike Pereira, the former Vice President of Officiating. SP, knew he needed to make sure they did not flag that play, so he went out of his way to tell the refs exactly what he was doing. SP is not liked by RG and other NFL organizations, because he simply did not follow whatever script they had planned that Super Bowl, day. SP is a maverick that can out smart you and walk the line during game day. RG and others simply have found a way to suspend the tour de force that is SP. It is unfortunate, but no one on our current coaching staff can stand up to RG and the NFL. There is no point in getting angry at any of our current coaches. At this point, let us applaud the effort. SP will be back. Ignore the NFL noise and continue to cheer, dear Saints fans. Geaux Saints.
If you wanna run b/w the tackles, use Ivory/PT...if you want to get more out of Ingram/Cadet, use sweeps and screens and pull some guards to block the way...Saints by two scores if they follow that simple recipe. It's simple, and poredictable, butmake the Eagles stop you!
The trick should be to put Chris Ivory into the lineup. Philly hasn't planned on him.