They can’t. If you’re a true Saints fan, you don’t really believe it can happen. There’s too much water under the dam. James Carville put it exactly right today in an appearance on the NFL network on Sirius. When asked when he first felt the Saints might make it to the Superbowl, his answer was, he was ashamed to say, when he saw Hartley’s kick split the pipes in the NFC Championship game. That’s how we think. Murphy’s Law. Whatever can go wrong, will, and at the worst possible time.
It’s a new era here, though. The Saints actually haven’t been a really bad team for a long time, the 2005 Katrina away-from-home-every-game season excepted. They have one of the best winning percentages in the NFL in the past decade, believe it or not. And since the Loomis/Peyton era began, in four seasons, we’re in the Superbowl. Still, long time Saints fans were indoctrinated way those eras began. So, no, we don’t go into this game of games with any swagger. Not the fans. The team might, though.
This team will win the Superbowl if they play better than the Colts. It’s that simple. We didn’t get here without the players. We’ve got the players. Oh sure, no team is perfect, except maybe the ’72 Dolphins, but plenty of teams have gone to the Superbowl and even won them with less talent than this Saints team has. We didn’t get here without coaches, either. We give nothing away in that department. We have a defensive coordinator who could and perhaps should be a head coach of an NFL football team. And we have Peyton. Enough said.
The Colts have the players and the coaches too, but we are not in any state of awe or feel we’ll lose the game to the Colts because we don’t have the players or the coaching.
It’s the game. If they play their best, like against the Patriots or the Eagles or the Vikings, for that matter, they won't lose. Execution. That’s what it all comes down to now. And luck. The Saints have not been in great supply of that commodity historically but then again, this season, that has changed too. The Saints, like most Superbowl teams, have had a little luck along the way. Balls that bounced their way. Controversial calls that went against the other team, for once, and not us. You make your own luck, sure. But let’s be honest, sometimes, it’s just luck. Like winning a coin toss.
So when will Saints fans really know that they’re going to win the Superbowl? Probably in the last minutes of the game. Maybe not until the last second. True Saints fans won’t believe it until the clock shows 0:00.