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Deke Bellavia

Join Deke and the Cajun Cannon Bobby Hebert for live, local talk about the Saints, LSU, Pelicans and much more on "Sports Talk!" 

Weekdays 4-8pm

Twitter: @dekebigchief
Email: bigchief@wwl.com

QB to QB: Drew Brees excited about Saints and Falcons

"It's an exciting position to be in," Saints QB Drew Brees had his weekly chat with Bobby Hebert and Deke Bellavia. Drew talked about the Saints 31-15 win over the Bears, and set up this weekend's big home game against the Atlanta Falcons.

The Saints battle the Atlanta Falcons Sunday with the NFC South Title on the line for both teams.

"We expected this to be a meaningful game, and sure enough a lot is on the line Sunday against the Falcons."

Drew talked about the play of the Saints and how well Chicago native RB Pierre Thomas did against the Bears.

"There is definitely something a little extra in it for him when we go to Chicago. He doesn't surprise me at all. Pierre is still playing at a very high level." Drew said that the Saints are off to a good start this week at practice in getting ready for Sunday's big game.

Brees also gave praise to Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan.

"I have a ton of respect for Matt (Ryan). He's played at a high level for a long time. He's just a real smart QB. He's an elite player and winner."

Click here to listen to the entire interview with Saints quarterback Drew Brees…

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Deke: NFL Top Ten, week sixteen

Oh man some teams have already been ousted from the playoff race and there is still three weeks left! The three time NFC Title Game rep in the 49ers are not going to the party this season and there is a log jam atop of the NFC right now and could get even trickier! In the AFC the Pats are still on course to be #1 while everyone else needs some help. Here goes this weeks top 10!

1. Seattle Seahawks - The Hawks are red hot! Right now the Hawks are still alive to be the #1 seed. Regardless of if the Seabirds are home out West or on the road, I truly feel like this is the most seasoned team in the playoffs!

2. New England Patriots - The Patriots know how important it is to gain that #1 seed. A year ago NE played in Denver in the AFC Title Game. This January they'd like that game to be in Boston. Tom and the Hood's final chance at a fourth ring? Possibly!

3. Arizona Cardinals - Man I know this is questionable but if your mindset is that defense wins championships, then the Red Birds from the desert can do it! Bruce Arians is hands down the league's coach of the year and now he might face the remainder of the season with his 3rd string QB. Home field is a must for this team this postseason. A goal that they can pretty much secure with a win this week against Seattle!

4. Denver Broncos - I think the Broncos have the postseason on their minds already. With the AFC West in hand Denver can lock up the #2 seed with a win over the Bengals this weekend. But in order to get to #1 NE has to lose!

5. Green Bay Packers - Hey man don't let that road loss to the Bills fool you. Buffalo has a title-laden defense intact. Now the Packers are still alive for one of the top two seeds in the NFC. But winning out is a near must for that to happen and then some help will be needed also!

7. Dallas Cowboys - Dallas the #1 seed in the NFC? Yes it could happen. If the Silver Stars win their last two games and Seattle wins the NFC West then the ever so important head to head tiebreaker would give Dallas the top seed! That's not bad at all considering that the Stars play inside! What if Dallas wins, don't say it! Please don't say it!

8. Indianapolis Colts - The Colts locked up the AFC South and can still earn the #2 seed with a little help. The day of Mr. Luck on Super Sunday will occur and more than once, more than twice hell I'll say at least three times. But it is not his time. Not just yet!

9. Detroit Lions - The Lions are still alive for everything in the NFC as well. Now, some help is needed, but it could happen. I think the Lions are solid but a win over Green Bay at Lambeau in two weeks would put more stock into these Motown Cats! Jim Caldwell deserves credit and should get plenty of mentions as a Coach of the Year candidate!

10. Baltimore, Pittsburgh and Cincinnati - Well you know the tie that the Bengals had some 10 weeks ago could be the deciding factor in the Bengals and the Panthers getting into the playoffs. The Ravens and Steelers are playing well right now and could use some help from Denver this weekend. The likelihood of a 10 win team getting left out is probably going to happen. And even an 11 win team could get bumped too!
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Deke: It truly is a wonderful life

Sometimes in life, we get a feel for how much we are loved; how much people care when something unfortunate happens. Sunday October 29th, an event took place that I truly don't remember much about, but what I do know is that the team around me acted like the pros we cover, and they worked to help save my life.

From the New Orleans Advocate: After scary on-air incident, WWL Radio's Deke Bellavia thrilled to be back

My wife, my mother, father and mother-in-law all hurried to New Orleans to make sure I was okay. Their support is something I don't mention or thank them for nearly enough. I'm truly grateful.

Two of my best friends were there instantly - Jonathan Foster and Daire Reeves. "Sick," you're know you my main man and that ain't never gonna change. And Daire, you are the most loyal person I know. Thank God we are together again. And to Junior Jody (Joe Petitto), you're my best friend and person who has never let me down. I took one phone call in three days. It was from Joe. Jody I love you and Jesus knows I'm lucky to have you in my life. It's all good!

Honestly, I was more embarrassed than anything. I felt my inability to communicate…to finish a sentence…to make sense…was causing a scene and messing up the show. Bobby had that big vein in his neck about to pop, after the Saints blew a two score lead with less than five minutes left in the Lions game. The Cajun Cannon was ready to explode - instead he had to alter his shot and play the role of caretaker.

I owe Bobby Hebert more than I can ever imagine. He is the reason I am able to do what I do and he and his wife Joan (Jo Jo) have helped me through my toughest days. I make a living and provide for my family because of a great company—Entercom; a great radio station—WWL, and a great partner and friend--Bobby Hebert. I'm indebted for life to a company that believes in, backs and supports its people, and to both the Cajun Cannon and his wife JoJo. I don't have much, but what's mine is theirs.

Our on-site engineer, Butch Landry, was as cool as the other side of the pillow as he guided me to safety. Keith Chifici and the Chifici family acted quickly and called 911. Their support and the role they played is special. Diane Newman (Mamma D) rushed over to make sure I was in good hands. She played the role of a great head coach and made the right calls during the most crucial time in my game that day.

T-Bob Hebert came in and saved the show. And the entire staff at Tulane Medical Center, the paramedics and every nurse and hospital worker went above and beyond the call of duty to make sure I was in the best of care. I did not know what shape I was in…how severe and serious, until the doctors spoke to me two days later.

Kristian Garic did not have a day off for four weeks. He came in and took over; never complained and had my back. The Dog was barking loud and proud. You alright in my book, K-Dog. Steven Geller did all of my features, called people to let them know I was out and he pulled my slack the entire time.

I reflect now and again say thanks to all who played a role in saving my life. But, I really want to thank you—my WWL family--the callers, the listeners, those of you who sound off on Facebook and those who email, text and tweet. I know my voice probably gets on y'alls nerves…a lot of times I may come across as over the top and arrogant, but I truly hope you all know how grateful I am for all of you out there. Without you there would be no me. I got hundreds and hundreds of emails, tweets and even had a few people call my home to check on me. That's a special feeling.

I try to show how thankful, grateful and lucky I am to be working on this legendary station…the greatest radio station on the planet by always coming to work…and giving all I got. To not be able to go to work was difficult and mentally tough to deal with. Your kind words and prayers got me through. For that I'm eternally grateful.

So again, I can't stress or say enough how much I felt and feel the love. I hope all of you are well and have a Merry Christmas. And because of the unselfish acts of kindness by so many people, I too will be able to have a Merry Christmas. Take care and God bless.

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Deke: Saints will find a way to beat Bears

It's a MNF battle in primetime with two of the league's worst defensive units. New Orleans allows 27.6 points per game which is 30th, while Bears are in last place, allowing an NFL worst 29.1 points per game. Simply put this is a battle of teams that are not good - one is alive and the other is dead. New Orleans can still win the NFC South and host a playoff game. The Bears are playing for pride. But do the Bears want to have the home crowd turn on them early and often tomorrow night at Soldier Field?

The Bears fans can relate to the severe frustrations of those of Saints fans as many thought that the Bears would at least be in the hunt for a playoff spot at this time of the season. Chicago has been a major disappointment much like the Saints have. But New Orleans has time to right their ship - the Bears ship has sunk!

This game is all about reaction to action. Say what? Well it has been a week since the Saints got pelted at home 41-10 by Carolina and now people, including myself, want to see how the Saints respond to some of the moves that have been made by Coach Sean Payton..

A known player was cut (WR Joe Morgan), one was supposedly benched and called out (Kenny Vaccaro). And several more were called to the principal's office for a "check yourself" style meeting. Is that stuff going to work? I mean it's week 15 of the season. By now you either got it or you don't right?

There is still hope in Who Dat land, but by the way of how poor the NFC South is. New Orleans is not a good team right now. And the Bears are flat out bad. A quick start by the Saints will go a long way as the Bears fans will turn on the home team and really make it hard on them.

Chicago has not been able to get RB Matt Forte his usual numbers this season as Chicago averages under 90 rushing yards per game. The Saints rush defense is bad. So which team will get the most out of their weak points might be key here. I could sit hear and tell you this and that and point out a million stats. But to me folks its real simple.

After 14 weeks in a season you are who you are. The Saints last road trip was as good of an outing as the team has had all season long. And the last home game was the lowest point of the season up to now. As bad as the Saints looked last week they are still a three point favorite over the Bears.

When it comes down to making the pick here, I ask myself which team has the better defense? That answer is incomplete because neither the Bears or the Saints are any good on defense. But the Saints did play lights out D for nearly three quarters in their win over the Steelers.

As bad and rumor-filled of a week as the Saints have had, the Bears week has been even more bizarre and down right soap opera like. I mean the Bears Head Coach was crying about how he should not have pushed his overpaid QB under the bus? What the hell kind of message does that send?

If this were a bowl game it might be dubbed the unstable bowl! Chicago is in more of a mess than the Saints and they are worse than the Saints are too! And then I ask myself which QB is the best. People Jay Cutler is OK but is he a one hundred million dollar QB? Cutler is erratic and makes far too many mistakes.

Cutler has a league high-tying six fumbles and the second-most interceptions (15) since signing his seven-year, $126.7 million deal that includes $54 million guaranteed. In fact, in this game the likelihood of Cutler making an unforced error is greater than not. I still have some faith left in my Who Dat tank.

I think the Saints find a way to win and set up a huge showdown with the possible winner take all next week when the Falcons come to the Superdome. I'll lay the points here and go with the Black and Gold.

The Big Chief says: New Orleans 27 Chicago 17
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Deke: Mariota first Duck to win Heisman Trophy

Oregon QB Marcus Mariota won the 2014 Hesiman Trophy tonight in New York. Mariota pretty much captured all the major awards this season.

The nation's best QB also won the Walter Camp, Davey O'Brien Trophy, Maxwell and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award.

Mariota led the Ducks to a 12-1 record and the #2 seed in the CFB Playoffs. With 52 total TD's scored and over 4,400 total yards Oregon QB Marcus Mariota was favorite to win it all.

Mariota was the odds-on favorite to take the Heisman. Mariota was the clear winner as he was far ahead of Wisconsin RB Melvin Gordon and Alabama WR Amari Cooper.

Mariota and the #2 Ducks play Florida State on New Years Day in a national semi-final in the Rose Bowl.
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Deke: Mariota first Duck to win Heisman Trophy

Oregon QB Marcus Mariota won the 2014 Hesiman Trophy tonight in New York. Mariota pretty much captured all the major awards this season.

The nation's best QB also won the Walter Camp, Davey O'Brien Trophy, Maxwell and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award.

I've seen Marcus play each year since his freshman year and to me he's progressed each season.

Many feel that Mariota is the driving force behind a Ducks Offense that may challenge Alabama for the National Title.

I think his ability to extend plays and carry the football it tight spots makes him more elusive and dangerous to score on every play he touches the football.

Obviously a national title would carry more weight to Mariota's storybook season than any individual award could.

Mariota led the Ducks to a 12-1 record and the #2 seed in the CFB Playoffs. With 52 total TD's scored and over 4,400 total yards Oregon QB Marcus Mariota was favorite to win it all.

Mariota was the odds-on favorite to take the Heisman. Mariota was the clear winner as he was far ahead of Wisconsin RB Melvin Gordon and Alabama WR Amari Cooper.

Mariota and the #2 Ducks play Florida State on New Years Day in a national semi-final in the Rose Bowl.

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Deke: Who's going to win the Heisman Trophy?

With 52 total TD's scored and over 4,400 total yards Oregon QB Marcus Mariota looks like the favorite to win it all. And of course when your team is picked to win the national semi-final and play in the title game that also helps. Mariota is the odds on favorite to take the Heisman.

Wisconsin RB Melvin Gordon pretty much had a lot of momentum in his favor after his gashing of the Nebraska Cornhuskers. But a bad day in the Big Ten Title Game pretty much sealed Gordon's fate as far as not winning the Heisman. Still Gordon had a great season averaging 7.6 yards per carry, Gordon has what looks to be a bright NFL future ahead of him.

If there is a dark horse in this year's race to me it's Alabama WR Amari Cooper. I mean after all, the last two of the last three winners of this big prize hail from the SEC.

Cooper became the most dangerous player in the nation's toughest conference. With 14 TD's and 14.4 yards per grab, Cooper's ability to stretch the field and make game breaking plays has him in the hunt for the trophy. And when you play for the favorite to win it all it works in your favor some also.

Two others that are worth mentioning but not serious contenders include TCU QB Trevone Boykin and Ohio State QB JT Barrett. Boykin had an incredible year for the Horned Frogs totaling 4,356 yards combined with 38 total TD's. But Boykin is just a mention in this group and not a legit threat to take the trophy.

Ohio State QB JT Barrett came in and led his team to an 11-1 record before being hurt in the Buckeyes battle with Michigan. Barrett is more than deserving of being mentioned as he had to fill in early this season and instantly became the guy in Columbus due to injury.

Some have Indiana RB Tevin Coleman (2,036 yards & 15 TD's) as a candidate but when your team is not bowl eligible and not at championship level to me that makes the individual player a lot less credible, no matter how good they are.
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Deke: Deuce chimes in on what's plaguing the Saints

He's one of the greatest Saints players ever, so I simply asked the legendary Deuce McAllister what's wrong with the Black and Gold. "Funk!" he said. "If you're looking for one word it's they are in a funk. Since you're not winning, every little thing that is done people nitpick at and say that's why the Saints are not winning."

Deuce talked about what he thinks are some of the things the Saints are dealing with right now, and he says as tough as the season has been, and as bad as things look right now, the Saints can still right the ship.

"They are not out of it. The Saints still have an opportunity to win the division, get into the playoffs and accomplish some things." We rattled off several other questions that the Saints' all time leading rusher responded to.

On the players' mentality going through these difficult times:

It's hard, hard real hard to win in the NFL. And as a player when you're not winning you start to question yourself and everything you do. You tend sometimes to not trust the process. I don't think the Saints are to that point yet But I do think that Coach Sean Payton is sending a message that if you're not playing well I'm not going to play you as much."

On the Saints lack of leadership:

"I don't know if there is a lack of leadership I just don't think that all 53 players are all focused on the same thing."

Are the Saints capable of winning the NFC South?

"I think they can handle it. I think some of the moves that Coach Payton has made this week let the players know that we can't continue to play like we are and win. The Saints have to put a couple of games that they play good together as a team. I think they can do it!"

The Saints have three games left in the regular season staring with a Monday Night Football road game at the Chicago Bears.
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Deke: NFL Top Ten, week fifteen

A log jam is taking place in the AFC North, while a piled up garbage-like traffic jam among four cars on four flat tires is in the NFC South. Things get real spicy this week with the Cowboys and Eagles and the Steelers head to the ATL in a key game for both teams. Take a look at the week 15 top ten!

1. Green Bay Packers - Hey they give up a lot of points. But as long as you score more than the other team that's OK. The Pack needs to win out to stay ahead of the Seabirds. Truth be told I'm not sure home field will mean that much even if GB gets Seattle at home this post season!

2. New England Patriots - Tom and the crew hold every big head-to-head tiebreaker with all the other leaders in the AFC. Home field advantage could be the deciding factor for a return Super Sunday trip for the Hood and the Prettiest QB in the history of the NFL. One of many titles that Tom can lay claim to!

3. Seattle Seahawks - No one wants to go out West, and I don't think many want to see them in their house. This seasoned veteran team looks like the most legit possible repeat club we've seen in a very long time!

4. Denver Broncos - Are the Broncos as good as they were a year ago? Denver needs to win out and have the Pats lose once to regain the #1 spot in the AFC. Lookout for one of those AFC North teams this post season. Great QBs don't like to be roughed up!

5. Philadelphia Eagles - Yes they got shut down and had less than 140 yards of offense. But that was to the arguably best team right now in Seattle. A win over the Silver Stars this week all but locks up the NFC East and that would be salty for second year coach Chip Kelly.

6. Indianapolis Colts - The Colts can put to rest the Texans this weekend and continue to be in play for the #2 seed in the AFC. Andrew Luck is going to get his title. It's only a matter of time. But right now seems a little early to me!

7. Arizona Cardinals - The Red Birds are tough and that win over KC last week was a big gut check for a young talented team. This Cards defense plays with a lot of confidence and more importantly swagger. Getting your swag on is big in the NFL you know!

8-9. Baltimore - Cincinnati - Pittsburgh - OK, three for the price of two NFL Fans! One of these teams will win ten or more games and get left out. To me the Purple Birds and Steelers look like the most serious contenders in the playoff hunt. But the Natty has that one tie that could be the difference after the regular season!

10. Dallas Cowboys - Dallas is in good shape right now but ten wins may not be enough to get in. Detroit or Dallas could be left out. Man would Jerry be mad and yelling how in the hell does this league let a sub five hundred team into the playoffs! And that's exactly what the Texan will be yelling if his Silver Stars are left out! But say what you want about Dallas and hate all you want. Only one team in the league has not lost a road game. The Dallas Cowboys!
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Deke: Who IS that team in Black and Gold?

Okay, let me be honest. I have nothing more than a working relationship with Saints Head Coach Sean Payton. So what I write to you comes from the experience of interviewing Coach Payton weekly since the 2006 season and nothing else. I have no special privileges, get no special access…this is pure feeling on my behalf.

I've seen Coach Payton in many lights over the last nine years, but right now the words that come to mind when trying to describe him after his team's most recent loss--confused, puzzled and disturbed.

"We can't kid ourselves. That was poor football. It was awful." Those were a few of the words that came from Payton's mouth after the Saints 41-10 loss to the Carolina Panthers. Now the Saints have had more than their fair share of bad losses this season. But, this 31 point hand delivered beat down by a team that had not won a game in two months (63 days)…takes the cake. Or so at least it does so far with three games left in the regular season.

The Saints were flat out flat, taken to the woodshed. They lost at home for the fourth straight time at a venue many consider the most difficult place for an opposing team to play in all of professional sports. So, what's wrong with the Saints? It's a simple question for which no one within the Black & Gold organization has an answer.

Personally, I think Coach Payton is doing a little head scratching about why he can't get a handle on this team. I fully believe the Saints are preparing hard each week for their opponents. Let's be honest, Sean Payton and his staff CAN coach. Their history, previous numbers and record reflect good coaching. But, what is it?

Could it possibly be this Saints team with a below five hundred record is too lax or overconfident? Coach Payton answered that after Sunday's game. "They shouldn't. We're not that good. I don't know if it's not being able to handle a little bit of prosperity or a little bit of success. We're not that good."

Let's look at that statement a few different ways. First, what were the expectations for the Saints going into the season? Well, it was all Super Bowl talk. Now that's laughable at best.

Second, you have to look at expectations of your team today. Right now the Saints are 5-8 with three games left and have the divisional title within reach.

Third, there are the week to week expectations. For example, the expectations for the Saints going into their game at Pittsburgh was "they're not going to win." And wouldn't you know the Black and Gold fooled us all and dominated the Steelers…the very same Steelers team that just beat the hell out of the Bengals last Sunday. I know, I know…go figure!

So, going into the Panthers game the expectations were--the Saints had turned the corner. The Black & Gold can finish the season on a high note and get playoff ready. Then a Panthers team that had not won a game in two months…a team that was on the league's longest losing streak…came into the dome and looked like the 85 Chicago Bears.

You know the simple and safest answer right now to the question—what's wrong with the Saints is…I don't know. And I truly feel like the players, coaches and certainly I have no clue what's wrong with the Saints. And, Coach Payton in his search for that answer has not ruled out changes on the field.

"Absolutely not. It's not too late. And that's not a threat. All I'm saying is it's madness to be here after a game like that with our fans and say we will have it right next week. We'll look at everything. That's how our business is though. Obviously as inconsistent as we've played, as poor as we've played, and we've played poor, I'd say as bad as we've played in a while, this game. Obviously we've had some other games. This one was a tough one to look at and I'm sure it'll be even tougher to look at on film. But we'll cover it all."

Folks, that sounds good, but keep in mind players who may be called upon to step up are the very same players who make up this roster that is a 5-8 team. So, unless there is some magic potion, or unless Michael Jordan can ship us some of that secret juice he kept under the Bull's bench back in the day, this current situation does not look like it will be resolved anytime soon.

One thing we all know…the NFL is about right now. Right now the Saints are in a bad place. In a week they could be coming off a win and set up a huge game with Atlanta. Then, once again we'll wonder…who is that team in Black and Gold!
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Deke: Saints should easily defeat struggling Panthers

Carolina Panthers (3-8-1) vs New Orleans Saints (5-7)
Sunday December 7 Noon Kickoff Mercedes Benz Superdome

History: Carolina leads the all-time series 20-19. The two clubs split the regular season meetings in 2013. But New Orleans can complete a season sweep of the Panthers with a win over Carolina in the Superdome. The Saints beat Carolina back in October 28-10.

Vegas says: New Orleans is a 9 ½ point favorite over the Panthers and the over/under is 49

Simply put, the season is on the line for Carolina. As bad as things have been during their six game losing streak, Carolina ends the season with three of their remaining four games against divisional opponents. Carolina can still win the NFC South but there is no room for error for the struggling Cats. On the flip side of things, believe it or not, this is not a so called "must win" for the 5-7 Saints. New Orleans still has a big game left with the Falcons in two weeks at the Dome. However if we are looking ahead the Saints could very well be a game ahead of the Falcons before that big match-up as the ATL is in Green Bay on Monday night. A win Sunday would give the Saints their second two game win streak matching a season best.

Carolina's offense is not good. QB Cam Newton is not getting the help via the running game like he did a season ago. And the Panthers no longer have one of the league's best defensive units. Carolina is giving up nearly twice as many points (28) as they did in 2013.

And speaking of Cam, well when your team has lost six straight you have to know that the QB is not playing well either. Cam is in a critical point in his career. I mean do the Panthers invest in Cam long term after this season? Or does Carolina take a wait a little longer stance? Carolina is just not a good team right now and their QB is not playing well at all.

The Saints will again strive for balance on offense. Last week the Saints had 26 rushing attempts and 27 passes. That is near perfect! Drew Brees was great going 19-of-27 for 257 and five TD's.

Look for the turnovers to once again show up big. Remember two weeks ago going into the Saints final five games of the season, Coach Payton told me on the Saints Coaches Show that being on the plus side of the turnovers the final five games of the season would be something that the Saints need to do.

Overall the Saints are minus -7 in the turnover ratio on the season. But the Saints were plus +2 last week in their 35-32 win over the Steelers. And don't let numbers fool you. Yes the national media will jump on the 538 yards the Steelers gained last week. But the Saints had a 19 point cushion and the Steelers had 200 less yards before they got two window dressing long drives to make things look closer than they really were.

Bottom line the Saints can get win #2 of this final five game stretch and inch closer to a NFC South showdown in two weeks against the Falcons. A win keeps the pressure on Atlanta going into Monday's game at Green Bay.
I think the Saints will continue to rush the ball well and have a good time in the Superdome.

The Big Chief says New Orleans 27-Carolina 10
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Deke: Saints should win big against Panthers

OK it's still a few days away from kickoff. But the Cajun Cannon Bobby Hebert and I both feel like the Saints will come out and win impressively this Sunday. "I think the Saints are a better team than the Panthers are," Hebert said.

New Orleans is 5-7 overall and tied for first place in the NFC South with the Atlanta Falcons.

The reigning NFC South Champion Carolina Panthers are on a downward spiral, losing six straight games. "The Panthers have not won a game in two months. Sure from a record standpoint the Cats are still mathematically alive in the division. But Carolina is reeling and they don't look like a team that can put together four good quarters of football," Big Chief said.

Carolina does not look anything like the 12 win team they were in 2013 - a season where Carolina had one of the most respected and feared defenses in the NFL. Currently the Panthers rank towards the bottom in all the major defensive stats.

Not only do the guys on Sports Talk think the Saints will have a good showing Sunday in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, the heavy hitters in Vegas also like the Saints in a big way. "New Orleans is a nine and a half point favorite over the Panthers. Basically the 2014 season is on the line for Carolina on Sunday. A loss pretty much ends any serious hopes at a division title for the Panthers."

So what does the Cajun Cannon say? "I think the Saints will continue to move forward and take another step in the right direction after their win over the Steelers. I like the Saints 27-13." And the Big Chief is right along with his Co-Host.

Regardless of what the Saints record is, New Orleans has been a team that has been able to rush the ball consistently this season. And the Saints know that finishing up strong in the final month of the season can erase anything prior.

I like the Saints 27-10 over the Cats!

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Deke: NFL Top Ten, week 14

The AFC currently has 11 teams that are at least two games above five hundred with four games left in the regular season. The AFC could very well see two, maybe three or more teams win 10 or more games and not make it to the post season. Meanwhile in the NFC the Packers are looking Green and Golden and the Seabirds are rising in the West. Here is my top 10 for this week!

1. Green Bay Packers – How crazy of a season is 2014? Just a handful of weeks ago Green Bay got waxed down in the Big Easy and now they are the best of the best. Who knows, this year gets stranger and stranger. But as long as Aaron Rodgers is under center the Pack has more than a damn good chance to win. Against anybody too!

2. New England Patriots – Yes the did lose this week to GB. But the Pats all hold the tie breakers against everyone worth a damn in the AFC. Maybe Tom's last best chance to win a title?

3. Seattle Seahawks – I just think that the Seabirds will walk down the Red Birds and claim the NFC West again this season. And yes Seattle is still very much on line to take the top seed in the NFC this post season. Remember that week one win over Green Bay! I know the Packers and Seahawks do!

4. Denver Broncos – I think Denver is good but are they Super good? Oh well, we will find out sooner or later, won't we?

5. Philadelphia Eagles – The Eagles are more legit than people outside of the City of Brotherly love know. Believe it or not these Eagles can fly not only on offense but they are pretty salty on D too!

6. Cincinnati Bengals – The Bengals are basically a few wins away from winning the AFC North once again. Now will the young duo of Dalton and Mr. Green cash in this post season?

7. Arizona Cardinals – Fading and fading fast are the Red Birds. Man last season this club's start to the season doomed their post season fate. Now it seems that the back end of the 2014 season will do in the Red Birds.

8. San Diego Chargers – The Bolts are not getting the credit they deserve. Three teams in the AFC West could possibly get into the post season. Possibly!

9. Indianapolis Colts – Man this year it has been harder than usual in ranking ten teams. I mean as many as 12 teams could reach the 10 win total in the AFC alone this season. The Colts get the nod at #9 this week.

10. Baltimore Ravens – The Purple Birds did lose last week but it was to a very good team. You know the AFC North could have all of their teams end the season with nine or more wins. That would be a first and of course someone gets left out. I don't think the Ravens will miss the AFC playoff party again this season!
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Deke: CFB Top Six, week fourteen

Could the SEC be completely locked out of the first ever playoffs? What happens this weekend if Florida State, Oregon and Alabama all lose in their conference title games? And are we any closer to really defining a true football champion? Oh man oh man there is only one week left until the four-team playoff is released and a lot could happen!

#1 Alabama – By listening to the post game presser I could not tell that Alabama won their game. Man, the Tide defense may have shown the Oregon Ducks too much, as they gave up a ton of yards in their win over Auburn. A Tide win and they are in! And who knows what happens if Alabama is upset by Missouri. I don't expect that to happen.

#2 Oregon – The Ducks can extract revenge this week against the lone team that beat them this season as they rematch Arizona. However a loss to the Wildcats should all but put to sleep these Ducks.

#3 Florida State – The Noles escaped the jaws of defeat once again. Man what if FSU plays their best game of the season in the playoffs? Are they just a team that plays and wins close games? Or are the Noles not that good? Hey they are the only undefeated team in the nation and they are the defending national champs. That's all I know!

#4 TCU – Yes I know that Baylor beat TCU head up but the Horned Frogs look like the best team from the Big XII right now. Could two teams from the Big XII in?

#5 Baylor Bears – Perhaps a win over Kansas State and a loss by someone above them would get the Bears into the playoffs. And maybe with the right things two teams from the Big XII could sneak in!

#6 Ohio State – Give the Urban one credit he's battled back from losing perhaps the best QB in CFB to overcome this late in the season.
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