I don't think this bears any further mention, but I am an Eagles fan.
Therefore I am completely disinterested in who wins the Super Bowl (I didn't even put money on it this time! Yay! Everyone applaud!), and probably will be for a few more seasons.
Trust me: Nobody knows the words "next season" better than Eagle fans. Unless you're a Raiders fan, in which case you use it in the sentence "next season is going to suck just as much this season." (Sorry Raiders fans... don't get angry. At least you guys beat us in the regular season.)
That said, I'm not sure if this is going to be a fun game to watch unless you're a fan of the
Satan Peyton Manning-offense or a fan of shootouts, or lots of touchdowns, or commercial breaks you actually look forward to...
Wait a minute. This Super Bowl is going to be awesome!
Yeah, a lot of NFL fans are tired of the Peyton Manning-offense, but then again, lots of tennis fans are tired of Roger Federer destroying the Majors like BALCO. Still, fans being fed up with Peyton Manning's success doesn't take away from how great he has played. The guy is slicing teams with actual defenses to ribbons.
Well, common logic says Peyton's going to give that Saints defense a spanking similar to the wrath of a thousand Catholic nuns. I'm not one to doubt the Catholic Church (what?), so I'm going to follow common logic this time:
I'm predicting a Colts victory. If you have a good memory, you might have noticed I called the Saints-Cowboy's upset , down to the score with one field goal margin of error. This call was a little easier, though. Why?
Drew Brees can't out-shoot Peyton Manning. Plain and simple. However, there are some things that New Orleans can do to give themselves a shot.
1. Own the Trenches
It's not exactly a field position battle, given the two teams' defenses, but if New Orleans can advance their field position at will with their offensive line and give Thomas, Bell, and Bush enough openings to move the chains, I see the Saints pushing the rush and attempting to slow down the pace of the game.
On the defensive end, they're simply not going to stop Peyton Manning. That much is clear. No matter what Gregg Williams says to intimidate the Colts, it's a matter of breaking through that Colts O-Line. However, Scott Fujita and the rest of the Saints tackle-box need to keep Joseph Addai from gaining easy yards and bail-out first downs.
2. Keep Peyton Manning Off the Field
As crazy as this sounds, I think Peyton Manning staying off the field is a good thing. Players need to stay in rhythm, and Manning is no different. He's one of the best in the game, but if the Saints can make their drives long, and if they can frustrate the Colts defense (which would in turn frustrate Manning), I have a feeling they can force a couple three-and-outs from Manning on the ensuing drives.
3. Ditch the Textbook on Coverage
Nobody reads the field like Peyton Manning, and nobody knows his receivers like Peyton Manning. I know it sounds like I'm sniffing Peyton's throne (in truth I actually hate him, I'm just doing a good job of hiding it), but watching Peyton wreck that Jets defense like a six-year-old with a yo-yo in a China Shop has made me a believer.
You have to have faith in your safeties and corners to make the necessary defensive adjustments, and also win the battle in the trenches to try to rush Peyton into making a bad decision (which he does maybe once every two games, usually at no expense to his team's success).
The Saints secondary has to be at the right place at the right time. I'm not saying if they do their job they're going to nab four interceptions and demoralize Peyton. I'm saying they need to make a couple plays here or there that force a difficult third down situation.
Good defense adjusts to the offense and forces it to continue making adjustments. It doesn't rack up interceptions by jumping routes, because Peyton will inevitably see past that and abuse your blown coverages. Good defense wins games by consistently thwarting the offense, and forcing turnovers when the opportunity arises.
If the Saints find a way to get to Peyton, all the better. However, that's like hoping your average Lakers-fan friend is going to start talking about basketball like he has something in between those ears. Don't count on it.
My call: Colts 31, Saints 23