When I predicted the New Orleans Saints to win the Super Bowl this season I was heckled and ridiculed. Sunday, in a game that was termed a showdown of two NFC powerhouses, Drew Brees had has way for most of the contest in a 47-28 blowout over the New York Giants. With the win, the Saints improved to 5-0, the first time thhey have started a season with five victories since 1993.
In the game, Brees was 23-30 for for 369 yards and four touchdowns. More impressive than the statistics were the throws he made. Anyone who saw the game would agree that Brees was razor sharp, especially in the first half, as he consistently abused the Giants with precision passes that could only be thrown in a small window for completions. Brees almost broke his own franchise record of 17 consecutive completions, but came up short with 15.
If you analyze the depth of skill position players the Saints have, the combinations of who is on the field at the same time is limitless. At running back, Pierre Thomas will be the workhorse and Mike Bell will spell Thomas at times. The most recognizable Saint, Reggie Bush, will be used in greater frequency at some point this season when a defense feels like shutting down everything else. Heath Evans is a true fullback who can get the ball around the goal-line as he did against the Giants.
At wide receiver, there are so many quality choices. Marques Colston, a no-namer that got the Saints booed for selecting him on Draft Day out of Hofstra a few years ago, is a tall guy who runs great routes and has great hands. Robert Meachum and Lance Moore are both healthy at the same time. Devery Henderson is an undersized gamebreaker who poses the big threat. Throw in Jeremy Shockey at TE, and you have the most complete core of receivers in the NFL.
The Saints defense only has to play sufficiently to get victories. This offense has the potential to go down as one of the best in NFL Football history, and I would not be surprised to see Brees re-write the record books this season.
The only team being compared to New Orleans in the NFC is Minnesota. The Vikings are a well-rounded team on both sides of the ball. Keep this in mind though, Brett Favre started 7-1 in New York last season before his old bones started to ache. Will Tarverius Jackson be enough to make Minnesota better than New Orleans? I think not.