With both these teams (and their poor fans) suffering major injuries to players expected to not only start, but also to contribute significantly this year, it got me to thinking...
(Besides Drew Brees...) Is there an Indispensable Saint on the roster whom we could not afford to lose to injury (or irreconcilable creative differences) and still salvage a decent 2013 season?
Please don't dwell on the negative aspect of this (losing a player to injury or other circumstance), as I don't want to supply any energy to feed that beast. But simply use this as a starting point for discussion in the way I intend it...looking beyond the obvious (Drew Brees), critically assessing the roster's level of individual talent, cross-referencing it with the relative depth of skill at each individual position group, and explaining to the group why you believe or don't believe that the roster contains another Indispensable Saint whom the team could NOT afford to lose.
Could it be Jahri Evans, the elite guard who, since 2006, has expertly protected one side of the pocket into which Brees steps to avoid the pass rush?
Or maybe you'd identify that player as TE Jimmy Graham, whose injury-impacted 2012 performance dropped off significantly from his impressive 2011 season? There was absolutely no one behind him on the depth chart last year to pick up the slack when he was a bit off his game.
Perhaps jack-of-all-trades spark plug mighty mite Darren Sproles is your man for this role.
Hey, Thomas Morstead made the Pro Bowl with his team record-setting season and he not only punts, but kicks off, too! And with the turnover at backup QB, he might even find himself holding on place kicks this year.
Or maybe you've got your eye on someone who plays on the other side of the ball? Hold on a sec. Excuse me, please.
Ahem...Ahem. OK, where was I? Oh yeah.
Pardon me, I'm going to need another minute or two.
OK, I'm all right. Seriously, I'm ok. Really.
What do you call it when you laugh so hard while typing that your brain nearly explodes out of your nose? Yeah, I just did that. Twice. Once for each hemisphere.
Next man up, rising to the occasion, individual skill set(s), talent evaluation/acquisition, can't make the club from the tub, these are just but a few of the turns of phrases you may um, turn to in your short answer or essay replies.
I'll collect the blue books from you as you finish your exams, and remember...this is 2/3 of your final grade.
Good luck to all!! I hope you studied!