What is wrong with the Canal Street faithful? I have read too much negative commentary over the last couple of weeks and thought it was time to jump back in. Even though I don't post much anymore I still read this blog everyday.
Some of you should remember me from last year, including many negative comments I gave on coach Payton. But this year has been entirely different. This team, this season, has been the culmination of four years of coach Payton's vision. 13-3 or 14-2 with home field advantage throughout the playoffs is an unbelievable accomplishment, and for that he should be applauded.
Coach Payton built this team for speed, high scoring, and playing in a controlled environment (ie. domes). This will not be a repeat of '06 where the weather could be the deciding factor. I was very adamant in years past on this team having to be able to run the ball better. I felt that they needed to be more balanced. But my biggest reason was because the playoffs normally mean stops in places like Chicago, Philly, and New York. Not this year, all roads lead to the dome.
Defensively, I have never fooled myself into believing we are great. All we need to be is good. We have fulfilled our most glaring need of creating turnovers and have put decent pressure on the quarterback. We have also come up with some big stops at critical points during the year which gives me hope.
Offensively, it is not by chance that we are the number one offense in the league. We have THE BEST QUARTERBACK IN THE NFL, DREW BREES! We can put up points with just about every specialty player on the roster. We can score fast and no deficit is insurmountable.
Special teams, well...um...are just that - special. Sometimes they are great, sometimes they are not.
We have lost two games. Dallas had their backs against the wall and played at their absolute best. We played at our absolute worst and had a chance to tie the game at the end. If not for two special teams errors we would not even be talking about the Tampa Bay game or whether or not we need to play well against Carolina.
No one will deny that the New England game was our mini-super-bowl. That game alone should show you what we are capable of. This team has been through a lot, and even as a fan it is hard to get excited about playing "Tampa Bay or Washington". Did those games have the same "feel" or intensity on our part as fans when we had the "battle of the unbeatens" in week 5. What about Monday night vs. New England? So how do you think the players feel?
For three seasons we have been hungry to get back in the playoffs. It is a two game season to the super bowl with both games in the dome. What team scares you? On my part, none. Every team has flaws and are beatable. At the end of the day we hold the trump card, our offense. We can put more points on the board than any other team. It's gonna take well over thirty to beat us in the playoffs. You think Drew and coach haven't been salivating at this thought for months. Let our opponents fight wars just to make it to the dome. We should be at full strength personal wise also. It has been obvious we have played kind of a "vanilla" offense lately. Do you not think coach Payton and the players will play at "full speed" come January? The Saints went to the playoffs in '87, '90, '91, '92, '00, and '06. Would you trade this team for any other in team history? Would you trade this opportunity for any other?
THIS IS OUR YEAR, THIS IS OUR TEAM!!!!!
THE SAINTS ARE COMING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!