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The New Orleans Saints are one of the best teams in the NFC thanks in large part to the great play of quarterback Drew Brees. Since coming to the bayou, Brees has resurrected what was a dormant franchise culminating in their emotional 2009 Super Bowl championship.
Though the Saints managed to get to the playoffs, they were upset in the Wild Card round by the NFC West "champion" Seattle Seahawks, who got into the postseason despite a 7-9 record. The loss put an end to a season that was obviously disappointing for the Saints.
People have been figuring out why the offense lacked the spark it had in 2009. Well, look no further than how much more frequently Brees was counted on to lead his team to victory.
While Brees has obviously been the leader of this team on and off the field since his arrival, the offense was actually quite balanced in 2009. Breed through the ball 544 times that season ranking just 15th in the league. Meanwhile the team ran the ball 408 times, seventh most in the league.
Now let's take a look in 2010. Brees threw the ball 661 times, second in the NFL, while the team ran it just 380 times, the third fewest in the league.
That imbalance hurt the entire offense as they scored less points and Brees threw a lot more interceptions. Now, part of this can be blamed on the fact the Saints sustained injuries to almost every starting running back throughout the season. Nevertheless, the team called on Brees more than ever to bail them out.
The Saints coaching staff needs to look at states like these and make sure they do their best to bring back the balance they succeeded with in 2009. If they don't, the Saints may very well find themselves fighting with teams like the Buccaneers, Bears, Giants and Cowboys for a pot in the playoffs.