Reggie Bush is coming off his best game of the season in last week's loss to Tampa Bay.
I am amazed by all the beer-belly whiners who piss and moan about the inequity of the BCS but are conspicuous by their silence about a playoff system that allows a team with a losing record to host an opening-round playoff game.
Well, such is life.
New Orleans faces Seattle today as they take step one in defense of their Super Bowl championship.
Better chance of the Pope joining the Jehovah's Witnesses than the 'hawks winning this one.
Seattle is bereft of talent on both sides of the ball and New Orleans has no excuse for playing poorly today in the Rainy City.
Here are 7 reasons why I think they will be celebrating at Pat O'Brien's on Bourbon St. tonight.
Editor's note: Saints Final Injury Report: LB Clark, TE Graham, DL Hargrove & S Jenkins have been ruled OUT for Saturday. DE Brown, WR Colston, TEs Shockey & Thomas & LB Waters are all PROBABLE for Saturday.
Reggie relishes the opportunity to prove he's the man this week in Seattle.
Psychology Today reports, "Playing in the big game can present several mental game challenges for athletes. The ability to cope with the pressure is key to allowing athletes to reach peak performance in key situations. Pressure can cause you to focus on results, tighten up and try too hard. When the season is on the line with a championship game, do you rise to the occasion, or fall under pressure?
"The best athletes and teams do raise the level of the performance in big games"
Reggie Bush is loving this.
He's the focal point again.
He spoke this week about how excited he is to prove his many doubters wrong.
Bush is not the most directional guy in the world. He sometimes gets North and South mixed up but he was key in the Saints winning the Super Bowl one year ago.
With the injury-prone Chris Ivory and Pierre Thomas gone for the year, all eyes are on Bush and he is coming off his best game of the year—9 carries for 70 yards and 5 catches for 55 yards.
Reggie will rise to the occasion and exceed the century mark rushing and receiving as he did last week against Tampa Bay.
At game's end, he will sprint to the sideline and bear hug his former coach Pete Carroll in a moving scene that will evoke tears from the Founding Father of the Who Dat Nation, Bobby Hebert.
The Midas Touch? Pete Carroll guided a Seahawks team bereft of talent into the playoffs in his first year.
There's a reason that the 7-9 Seahawks are No. 28 in total offense and No. 27 in total defense in the NFL—they lack talent on both sides of the ball.
Injuries, weather, etc. are unacceptable excuses for the Saints this week.
New Orleans possesses an abundance of talent on offense and one the NFL's most talented and deep secondaries.
Truth be told, Chase Daniel could probably win this one for the Saints but let's hope it doesn't come to that.
Jeremy Shockey will sub for Jimmy Graham at tight end- talk about depth!
They say gratitude is the least heartfelt emotion.
New Orleans Saints fans found it easy to forget the man who caught the go ahead touchdown pass in the Super Bowl last year, Jeremy Shockey, when is rookie backup Jimmy Graham was playing like a future All-Pro.
Graham, who had a big game against Seattle in November, will not play this week but who really cares all that much when Mr. Shockey is the man in reserve?
Darren Sharper will replace the injured Malcolm Jenkins.
Another situation where excellent depth gives the Saints a chance to repeat as Super Bowl Champions.
Darren Sharper, an All-Pro in last year's Super Bowl season, began the year on injured reserve and said he wasn't feeling the love from Saints management.
In his absence, Malcolm Jenkins proved he has everything it takes to be an elite player in the NFL.
His heroic strip of Roy Williams on Thanksgiving Day helped the Saints snatch victory from the jaws of defeat in Dallas.
Jenkins has been ruled out for the Seattle game but the future Hall-of-Famer Sharper, a guy with plenty left in the tank at 37, is a quite a luxury in the Saints secondary.
While Brees has not had one of his better years, the competitive fire still burns.
Drew Brees is the best quarterback in the National Football League.
ESPN will never tell you that.
Brees' name seldom is mentioned in the conversation when those ESPN talking heads discuss the league's elite QB's.
They say its Tom Brady and Peyton Manning and Michael Vick.
Vick? Now that's laughable.
Brees gashed the Seahawks for 382 yards passing and 4 TDs in the regular season prompting Pete Carroll to say, "He was the factor."
Brees is as competitive as they come and he must have just an ever-so-slight chip on his shoulder these days.
Saints Defensive Coordinator Gregg Williams red-zone defense is fierce.
While Saints Defensive Coordinator Gregg Williams doesn't have what you would call a shutdown defense, they seem to find ways to shut things down in the red-zone.
In that regard, the recent Atlanta game comes to mind as well as the Saints 34-19 victory over Seattle in November.
While he may not be able to confuse the savvy veteran Matt Hasselbeck with his wide array of complex schemes, expect Williams' secondary to ultimately make it a miserable day for Hasselbeck, the man who guided the Seahawks to the Super Bowl five years ago.
Give Pete Carrol his due.
After emigrating to the NFL from USC, he transformed a Seattle team not blessed with much ability into NFC West Champions, albeit with a 7-9 record.
Carroll is the Jonathan Livingston Seagull of the coaching profession.
He's a player's coach who employs a rah-rah college-like motivational style in the NFL.
Time will tell if it works, as Carroll has never been more than a .500 coach in the pros.
Meanwhile, Sean Payton has been accused of being pass-happy at times by some of the beer-bellied season-ticket holders who sit in the cheap seats but what he has done in New Orleans defies belief.
He has the guts of a cat burglar and his propensity for taking risks keeps his opponents on their toes at all times.