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Opponent Final 2010 Defensive Ranks
Seattle Pass Defense – 2010: Yards Allowed/Game 27th (250 Yds/Gm) - TDs Allowed T-29th (31)
Seattle Rush Defense – 2010: Yards Allowed/Game 21st (118.9 Yds/Gm) – TDs Allowed T-18th (13)
New Orleans Offensive Cast
Drew Brees (QB Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 1)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 448/658 – for 4,620 yards, 33 TDs & 22 INTs
Drew had his best game of the season against the Seahawks back in Week 11 going off for 382 yards and four TDs. Granted, that game was played in the comfort of the Saints home dome while this time around he’ll be playing on the road, but I don’t expect it to matter much. The Seahawks pass defense is one of the worst in the game and with New Orleans being without the services of either Pierre Thomas or Chris Ivory, you can bet they’ll take their game to the air. Brees is a lock to throw up 45 passes this Saturday and with that kind of opportunity, expect him to easily surpass his career playoff averages of 274.7 yards and 2.2 TDs per game.
Reggie Bush (RB Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 5)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 36 carries for 150 yards & zero TDs || 34 receptions for 208 yards & one TD
With Pierre Thomas and Chris Ivory out, Reggie will have the chance of a lifetime this weekend. Not only will he get a good 15 carries or so, but he should also see close to 10 catches out of the backfield giving him around 25 touches to do some serious damage with. If the Saints put up 30+ points, which they should, expect at least six of them to come from Bush.
Julius Jones (RB Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 14)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 60 carries for 223 yards & zero TDs || 17 receptions for 59 yards & zero TDs
Julius will get some decent play in this game being the de facto RB2, but I can hardly say he’d do anything with thirty touches, much less the ten he’ll likely get this weekend.
Marques Colston (WR Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 1)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 84 receptions for 1,023 yards & seven TDs
Everyone knows Colston just had his knee scoped and might not be 100 percent in this game, but that’s not going to make a bit of difference for the big wide receiver. In their first meeting, Marques had a season high 113 yards on eight catches to go along with his two TDs, numbers I could actually see him coming away with again this Saturday despite his gimpy knee.
Robert Meachem (WR Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 8)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 44 receptions for 638 yards & five TDs
Meachem is starting to see a lot more targets come his way and is always a threat for a long TD no matter who the Saints are playing. However, this weekend Meach’s odds at grabbing a long one have got to be pretty good seeing that the Seahawks pass D sucks and that two of his five TDs came against them in their first matchup.
Lance Moore (WR Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 15)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 66 receptions for 763 yards & eight TDs
Moore is nothing special as far as WRs go, but you can’t just ignore him either or else he’ll make you pay. In fact, Lance led the team with eight TDs this season, so it’s possible he could come away with a nice game here. You really never know who Brees will choose to throw to until it happens.
Devery Henderson (WR Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 22)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 34 receptions for 464 yards & one TD
Henderson is a once-in-a-blue-moon type of player, as in he has one TD this season, one game with more than 65 yards, and one game with more than four catches.
Jimmy Graham (TE Playoff Week 1 Ranking: Not Ranked - OUT)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 31 receptions for 356 yards & five TDs
Graham has been ruled out for the game today due to a high ankle sprain.
Jeremy Shockey (TE Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 2)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 41 receptions for 408 yards & three TDs
With Graham out, Shockey takes over as the main tight end target for New Orleans and climbs up to the two-spot in my rankings because of it. Brees will depend on Jeremy to regain a bit of his old toughness in this one as the position works as a major cog in the Saints' offensive scheme. Look for the Shock Jock to get a good seven to ten targets with a couple of them coming in the red-zone.
David Thomas (TE Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 6)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 30 receptions for 219 yards & two TDs
Thomas is a fine young tight end who will have no problem filling in as the second tight end option in this offense. Drew actually likes him quite a bit, so expect David to get a handful of targetsdespite being behind Shockey in the pecking order.
Opponent Final 2010 Defensive Ranks
New Orleans Pass Defense – 2010: Yards Allowed/Game 4th (194 Yds/Gm) - TDs Allowed 1st (13)
New Orleans Rush Defense – 2010: Yards Allowed/Game 16th (112.3 Yds/Gm) – TDs Allowed T-18th (13)
Seattle Offensive Cast
Matt Hasselbeck (QB Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 6)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 266/444 – for 3,001 yards, 12 TDs & 17 INTs
Hasselbeck had maybe his best game of the season against the Saints earlier this year putting up 366 yards and a TD on a season-high 44 pass attempts in the Seahawks 34-19 loss. With Seattle likely to be behind most of this game, Hasselbeck will be passing the ball a ton once again and could end up with pretty decent stats.
Charlie Whitehurst (QB Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 9)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 57/99 – for 507 yards, two TDs & three INTs
The Seahawks are committed to Hasselbeck at this point as they have been all year. The only chance Whitehurst will see the field is if Hasselbeck’s hip injury becomes a factor.
Marshawn Lynch (RB Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 9)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 202 carries for 737 yards & six TDs || 22 receptions for 145 yards & zero TDs
I can’t see Lynch being too much of a factor in this one unless Seattle somehow jumps out to an early-game lead. He’s nothing special in the passing game, so if the ‘Hawks go down early, Marshawn will likely have to split time with the more explosive Forsett.
Justin Forsett (RB Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 16)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 118 carries for 523 yards & two TDs || 33 receptions for 252 yards & zero TDs
Forsett doesn’t normally see enough action to make a difference, but being the better RB in the passing game might give him more of an opportunity this weekend.
Mike Williams (WR Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 9)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 65 receptions for 751 yards & two TDs
BMW had one of his three 100-yard games against the Saints earlier this year, and with Seattle likely to be passing the ball a bunch this game, he could very well end up with his fourth.
Ben Obomanu (WR Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 19)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 30 receptions for 494 yards & four TDs
Obomanu is still the guy with the most upside in this WR corps, and like Big Mike Williams, he also had a great game the last time these two teams met. I’m not expecting the world here, but Ben could surprise and burn the Saints deep in this one.
Brandon Stokley (WR Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 24)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 31 receptions for 354 yards & zero TDs
Like the others, Stokley also put up his best stats of the year against the Saints in Week 11 by catching all six of his targets and turning them into 76 yards. As the oldest player on offense next to Hasselbeck, Matty may look his way a bit more this Saturday.
John Carlson (TE Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 9)
Final 2010 Season Stats: 31 receptions for 318 yards & one TD
Carlson was supposed to be a major focus for the Seahawks offense this year, with the key phrase being “supposed to be”. He’s played a bit better as of late, but I still wouldn’t expect much, even with the Saints giving up five catches/game to opposing tight ends.
Cameron Morrah (TE Playoff Week 1 Ranking: No. 12)
Final 2010 Season Stats: nine receptions for 117 yards & zero TDs
Morrah was good for a minute there a few weeks back, but has since disappeared.