Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints: Possible Playoff Matchup Looming

Ryan ComstockCorrespondent IDecember 28, 2010

ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 27:  Pierre Thomas #23 of the New Orleans Saints fights off two defenders in the first half during the game against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome on December 27, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints have played to a virtual standstill this year.

They are 1-1 in their head-to-head matchups and are tied at 41-41 in total points.

It only seems fitting then that they meet in a playoff rubber match to decide once and for all who is boss of the NFC South.

Given the franchise history of the Falcons, anything is possible, but it is extremely likely that they will be division champs.

Both teams will be in the postseason though, and being that they split their season series, who is better will be a hot topic.

If you ask me, these teams seem fated to meet again in January. If you ask me what I think of that, I'll tell you that such a contest would be All-Time.

I'll boil it down for you like this.

The Falcons needed their Week 3 meeting more. They were 1-1 and the Saints were 2-0. They could not, absolutely could not, fall two games behind the defending Super Bowl champs and hope to win the division.

Atlanta won that game.

Coming into Week 16, the Saints needed the game more. It was still possible for New Orleans to miss the playoffs and the Falcons needed to win just one of their final two games to clinch home-field throughout the playoffs.

The Falcons, of course, are playing one of the worst teams we have ever seen in the Carolina Panthers Week 17.

With Monday night's win, the Saints secured a playoff spot in a game they needed to have.

In a postseason rendezvous, both teams will need the game equally. There's no other way to put it.

Some have said the Falcons got lucky to beat the Saints in New Orleans and that's fine. Garrett Hartley should have made an overtime chip-shot field goal.

If that is the case, though, the Saints got lucky to beat the Falcons in Atlanta—aided by a failed snap that this writer has never seen happen before and a Michael Turner fumble on New Orleans' goal line, the back's first of the season.

The teams have played twice, and so far it is a draw.

Most around the country are hoping to see Michael Vick return to Atlanta at some point in the postseason. Many have looked at a potential NFC Championship Game showdown as a great story, and that it is.

In terms of pure football, however, we should all be wishing for another Saints-Falcons battle. Let's ratchet it up a notch by having them square off in the Championship Game.

If that happens, I guarantee you we will be in store for one of the greatest games ever played.