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Super Bowl Early Thoughts
While the dust clears from the AFC and NFC title games, we'll have two weeks to dig into the Super Bowl matchup between the Saints and the Colts, but in the meantime, I wanted to pass along some early thoughts about what we saw this weekend and what we might see in two weeks.
One thing you need to remember is, while this past weekend is still fresh in all of our minds, when handicapping the Super Bowl, you need to take each teams entire body of work into consideration. Without digging in and breaking this game down, it's safe to say both of these teams deserve to be here. They were the best teams from start to finish this year, and earned the right to be here. It's what you accomplish in weeks 1-16 that earns you the right to go to the dance in the first place.
Having said that, after watching both title games Sunday, there's no question which team did what they had to do, with an exclamation point, and which team was damn lucky to win and advance. Peyton Manning was able to do what no one else has been able to do recently, find holes in the Jets defense. They beat two good defenses in the playoffs in the Ravens and Jets and based on that, I don't see any way the Saints will be able to stop the Colts offense, based on their pathetic play yesterday.
The Saints on the other hand, while they deserve to be here based on the entire season, they don't deserve to be here based on how they played, at home, in the NFC Title game. You want to see a team kick the doors in when they advance to the Super Bowl. Yet they were outplayed in all aspects of the game with the exception of the turnover battle.
One thing that really stood out while watching the game was the Saints inability to stop the Vikings on 3rd down. Peyton Manning has already got to be licking his chops for this game. Based on last weeks performance by the Saints, it seems as though Manning could break some Super Bowl records as I just can't see how the Saints are going to stop this guy and all of his weapons.
The key to the game in my opinion will be the Colts defense against the Saints high powered offense. The Colts defense is underrated, but at the same time, they did give up a big pass play or two to Sanchez and his one dimensional offense. The Jets had one guy they could go long to and managed to hit him for a TD. Brees has lot's of weapons and moves the ball around as good as Manning does.
One last thought is that I would be careful with the Saints frame of mind. Are they just happy to be here? They were dancing in the streets in New Orleans last night, as they should have been. But you get the sense that the mission has been accomplished. The Saints made it to their first Super Bowl ever. A job well done regardless of what happens next. With the Colts, you don't get that. You get the "there's still one game to go" attitude. We have seen it before, a team with Super Bowl experience against a team with none.......be careful.
We'll of course dig into this game and cover it from every angle along with our official prediction as the game approaches. We have two full weeks before game time and that will certainly seem like an eternity.
We'd also like to here from you! The chatter about the big game has already started in our forums. What do you think about the big game?
In the meantime, we'll start to feature some hoops info, with March Madness quickly approaching!
Hoops Plays coming soon!