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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

Deke's Saints-Giants preview: It's 'do or die' time!

What they are saying
Saints QB Drew Brees on what he and the Saints want to accomplish in the last four games:
“We want to win, because our record is what’s going to get us in the playoffs. (We) strive for efficiency. For me as a quarterback, not only am I responsible for much of the pass game, but for much of the run game as well, (in addition to) our mode of operation as an offense, our tempo. My decisions drive the offense in a lot of cases, so we have to be on point like I expect to be and I am preparing to be. That’s my mindset.”
Giants Coach Tom Caughlin on Saints Defensive Coordinator Steve Spagnuolo:
“Steve did a nice job, a very good job for us. He’s a heck of a young man. He’s got great energy. He is good person. He and Maria make a great team and we were really happy to have him at that time. He came in and Steve was our defensive coordinator in our 2007-2008 Super Bowl (team). We were really proud to have Steve with us on our staff, he did an outstanding job. From the job that he did when he was a New York Giant, he had an opportunity to become a head coach.”
Deke’s Thoughts on the game:
OK, the Saints are down to just four games left in the season and they must win all four and keep hope alive that other teams lose multiple games to have a shot at the playoffs.  New Orleans has owned the G-Men, beating them by an average of 23 points per game in their last three meetings. 
Will the Saints’ success against the Giants continue, or will the stout New York front seven wreak havoc on a banged-up Saints offensive line?  The Saints have more problems on offense then just having to deal with the Giants D-Line.
The play of Saints QB Drew Brees has been plain bad the last two games, throwing seven interceptions and two pick-sixes.  If Drew does not play better this week, the question won’t be if the Saints have a shot at the playoffs…instead it will turn to can this team win another game this season.
In their three-game win streak, the Saints ran the ball well.  But, in their last two games, the Saints have not been able to have a consistent running game like they did in their previous three games.
On the flip-side, the Giants have been somewhat a chameleon this season.  When New York played at San Francisco and at home versus the Packers the G-Men looked dominant.  Yet, other times this season they have looked not so good.  What Giants team will show up this week?
New York was destined to be one of the top two seeds in the NFC four weeks ago as they had a 6-2 record.  But the G-Men have lost three of their last four games, and now are in a heated battle in the NFC East with a surging Washington Redskins team that just beat New York 17-16 last week.
If you want to follow closely, one of the things to watch in the game is  third down situations.  The Saints have become one of the best defensive units in the league when it comes to third down defense.  New Orleans is nearing the top ten when getting off the field on third downs.  The Saints have allowed just 11 first downs to be converted in their last three games when defending on third down.  Teams have gone a combined 11-of-36 against the Saints defense in their last three games, a number that Coach Joe Vitt likes.
“We have become one of the better defensive units in the league when it comes to third down.  New York is one of the best teams in the league converting on third so this is going to be a challenge for our defense,” said Coach Joe Vitt.
For the second straight week the Saints defensive secondary will be going up against one of the best pass catching groups in the NFL.  Last week the Saints did a solid job slowing down the Falcons wide receivers as the Saints held WR Roddy White to no receptions in the first half, which was the first time in 37 games that White did not catch a ball in the first two quarters. 
Honestly, I could sit here and give you all sorts of numbers and all kinds of scenarios, but here’s the bottom line.  Since the NFL expanded to a 16-game schedule back in 1978, there have been just five teams that have reached the post season with a 5-7 start.  Guess who was the first team to do it?  The Saints back in 1990.  Will that happen again?  The way the NFC is shaping up, I’d say not likely.  But if the Saints don’t win out there is no way they can get in. 
New Orleans must be ready to slow down the Giants’ running game and the Saints have to get back to rushing the football themselves.  Do that, and win the turnover battle, and it should be enough to earn the win. 
New York needs to win to keep some distance between them and the rest of the pack in the NFC East.  Will New York finally break through against the team that has dominated them more so than any other team in the league, or will the Saints snap out of it and try and save their season?  Tune in today to find out!

New Orleans Saints (5-7) @ New York Giants (7-5)
3:25PM Kickoff WWL Radio
Last week’s results:  Atlanta beat New Orleans 23-13 and Washington beat New York 17-16
Series History:  New York leads the series 14-12

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Topics : Religion_BeliefSports
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Locations : AtlantaNew OrleansNew YorkSan FranciscoWashington
People : Drew BreesJoe VittRoddy WhiteTom Caughlin

12/09/2012 9:27AM
Deke's Saints-Giants preview: It's 'do or die' time!
Please Enter Your Comments Below
12/09/2012 10:48AM
Saints 5-8 About 8pm
Guess lot of loyal fans will be at the airport tonight!
12/09/2012 5:15PM
Wonder what kind of excuses he will have
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