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Eagles vs Saints - Divisional Round - GG: GL Saints, Hope you Win it all! (1 Viewer)

I think it's time to move on from Yogi.  The joke has run its course, and I'm sure he'll give you something to laugh about later in this thread.

 
It's slowing starting to simmer. The slow burn to kickoff. And we have the last game again. Can't hardly wait.

 
Appreciate the input here from team's fans, particularly local ones for that local insight. What are Saints fans generally expecting, particularly on the offensive end? I pointed out the offense has been sluggish down the stretch, but someone indicated that the Saints posted 31 points in each of the last two home games.

Will they try to slow the game down and play ball control hoping to re-establish the solid running game from earlier in the year? Or is the offensive line still somewhat injury impacted? Do they do an about face and unleash Brees, giving Thomas 12 to 15 targets and throwing deep several times to Ginn, while also passing to the running backs?

I think that now, unlike earlier, they need to loosen the defense by passing first and not going heavy run on early downs. And I think that Brees should stay at QB for every snap.

 
Appreciate the input here from team's fans, particularly local ones for that local insight. What are Saints fans generally expecting, particularly on the offensive end? I pointed out the offense has been sluggish down the stretch, but someone indicated that the Saints posted 31 points in each of the last two home games.

Will they try to slow the game down and play ball control hoping to re-establish the solid running game from earlier in the year? Or is the offensive line still somewhat injury impacted? Do they do an about face and unleash Brees, giving Thomas 12 to 15 targets and throwing deep several times to Ginn, while also passing to the running backs?

I think that now, unlike earlier, they need to loosen the defense by passing first and not going heavy run on early downs. And I think that Brees should stay at QB for every snap.
IMO the last game was really a function of the Saints and Phi defenses. The Saints defense got 3 TOs including all 3 picks IIRC. I don't know the Saints two other games - vs Atl & Pit - were all that different in style outside the additional opportunities. I personally am expecting a closer game with both teams being careful to avoid turnovers.

The Philly defense was constantly overmatched, on the run and pass. That's not a jab, that's just how it was.

I think the Philly defensive backfield has improved.

I do think the Saints will be (surprise) looking to jump on the Eagles early. They will take their shots deep if given the chance and Ginn being back is a very big deal. But to answer your question I expect it to be a run first and run heavy approach which has been working very well for 2 years now. If the Eagles can't stop that they are toast.

Hill also had 6 opportunities last game, 3 rushing, 2 passing, 1 receiving. I expect less of that, however he is essentially a 3rd RB, I do not doubt we may see him in 3rd/4th and short opportunities where he is most effective.

 
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Some Saints-Eagles History.

The Eagles lead the all time series 17-12, which is actually pretty decent for a Saints head to head (for the Saints I mean).

 
IMO the last game was really a function of the Saints and Phi defenses. The Saints defense got 3 TOs including all 3 picks IIRC. I don't know the Saints two other games - vs Atl & Pit - were all that different in style outside the additional opportunities. I personally am expecting a closer game with both teams being careful to avoid turnovers.

The Philly defense was constantly overmatched, on the run and pass. That's not a jab, that's just how it was.

I think the Philly defensive backfield has improved.

I do think the Saints will be (surprise) looking to jump on the Eagles early. They will take their shots deep if given the chance and Ginn being back is a very big deal. But to answer your question I expect it to be a run first and run heavy approach which has been working very well for 2 years now. If the Eagles can't stop that they are toast.

Hill also had 6 opportunities last game, 3 rushing, 2 passing, 1 receiving. I expect less of that, however he is essentially a 3rd RB, I do not doubt we may see him in 3rd/4th and short opportunities where he is most effective.
It has.  The guys that played in that game(with the exception of Malcolm) were literally all on the street a week or two prior, had never played together and had never played an NFL game.  In addition to the backfield being much improved, Tim Jernigan is back, which has made a MASSIVE difference in the D-line, which is arguably playing the best a Dline has played this year.  I'm hoping that they (birds defense) focus on the quick strikes and make the saints beat them on the ground.  

Foles is a magician but he can't keep up with Tecmo Brees.  I'm hoping that Schwartz introduces some exotic blitz packages that we've not shown before and get to Brees early.  He is not infallible and can be forced into mistakes.  I like Maddox to make up for the double-move bites last week and grab a game-changing pick Sunday.

This is going to be a tough game for the Birds, but this is also a prideful and hungry team that is 180 degrees from the drek that got curb stomped so many weeks ago.

ETA:  and this of course:

Don't forget about BDN

 
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Yes.  The Saints OL woes have been the issue since the Dallas game and why Brees hasn't looked himself.  Two weeks of rest and rehab should be telling.  Looking forward to a great one.

 
Is there any concern that this NO team hasn't played meaningful football together for 22 days?  I know there are differing schools of thought here.  My experience is with Andy resting his starters.  It did not work out for them.

 
unckeyherb said:
Is there any concern that this NO team hasn't played meaningful football together for 22 days?  I know there are differing schools of thought here.  My experience is with Andy resting his starters.  It did not work out for them.
There doesn't seem to be a discernable trend in the league one way or the other. The 2009 Saints did basically the same thing and went on to handle the Cardinals in the Superdome after ~3 weeks without meaningful football.

I think after the fact, it's tempting to look back on inconsequential things and say "Aha! That's why this result happened!" The old saw about correlation and causation and all that.

 
Shawnky said:
Yes.  The Saints OL woes have been the issue since the Dallas game and why Brees hasn't looked himself.  Two weeks of rest and rehab should be telling.  Looking forward to a great one.
Still don't think he's 100% ... but IMHO, watching this Saints offense over the years, a healthy Terron Armstead is himself worth a TD (maybe more) each game. Not only does he do an elite job of protecting Brees**, Armstead never needs chipping help the way his backups do -- so an extra man on offense is freed up to either run a route or block elsewhere.

** without a leaguewide top-5 edge rusher, no opponent is going to beat a healthy Armstead for a sack, or really even a pressure. He's been that good recently.

 
Submitted without comment 

@JonDeTrinis: From sources:

Yesterday, 4 armed guards entered the @saints locker room, with Coach @SeanPayton wheeling the Lombardi trophy on top of $225k in cash. 

Coach then said: “Y’all want this???”

“Win 3 F’n games.”

The locker room erupted. $225k is each player’s SB bonus. 
#WHODAT

 
Submitted without comment 

@JonDeTrinis: From sources:

Yesterday, 4 armed guards entered the @saints locker room, with Coach @SeanPayton wheeling the Lombardi trophy on top of $225k in cash. 

Coach then said: “Y’all want this???”

“Win 3 F’n games.”

The locker room erupted. $225k is each player’s SB bonus. 
#WHODAT
Bad juju seeing the trophy before super bowl night. It's like seeing the bride before the wedding. 😉

 
Still don't think he's 100% ... but IMHO, watching this Saints offense over the years, a healthy Terron Armstead is himself worth a TD (maybe more) each game. Not only does he do an elite job of protecting Brees**, Armstead never needs chipping help the way his backups do -- so an extra man on offense is freed up to either run a route or block elsewhere.

** without a leaguewide top-5 edge rusher, no opponent is going to beat a healthy Armstead for a sack, or really even a pressure. He's been that good recently.
this is great news. the Eagles line is the best part of their defense and the only hope for disrupting the NO offense. Armstead has made a ton of progress in his career and proven himself to be worth his contract.

 
Might have to pump the brakes on Armstead's availability ... though really, everyone is guessing at this point:

Doug Mouton of WWL TV Sports said that Bushrod will "likely" be ready to play, but that Armstead will be "less than 50/50 that he can go". Then he mentioned that if Bushrod was not able to be effective at LT, Payton may have to "shuffle the offensive line".Since he did not reference a source for his statements, I got the feeling that this was a common belief or consensus among the reporters. Watching the short interview they had with Armstead in the locker room I can personally say that he didn't exude a lot of confidence that he could play to a level that he could be effective at the LT position. And that's really what bummed me out.

 
Last week I was pretty damn close to the score calling 16-13 win over the Bears. I was even going to mention a last second Parkey miss but didn't want to jinx it. I felt last week despite the records, the two teams were pretty evenly matched.

This week, the Saints are clearly better than the Eagles this season. They have multiple top tier weapons on offense, a HOF QB having an MVP type season, a defense that is playing really good and a kicker who is lights out. We can't sneak by like we did the Bears. Eagles have to play they're best game of the year and try to get the Saints to play down a bit. 

The keys are going to be the usual stuff. Foles has to be really good Foles. Last week's version was ok Foles. Great in crunch time but we can't have any interceptions in the end zone. We can't afford to lose possessions against the Saints. They almost have to be perfect on offense.

For the Eagles defense, they have to find a way to slow the Saints down. Don't let them get chunk plays to Thomas and Kamara. Have to play their asses off to stop the run game as much as possible. Can't let up 173 yds on the ground like last time. Getting pressure up the middle in Brees' face is key. I don't think we'll sack him at all but if they can get in there and bat down a couple of early passes, that might frustrate him. Secondary needs to keep playing huge. Double team MT all game. Make Brees go elsewhere with it. It's just going to be tough on defense. Have to be perfect.

For special teams, they have to have zero mistakes. Can't take it out of the end zone on kickoffs. Have to make the fair catch at the 15 or 20 instead of letting it bounce down to he 1. Need to win the field position game. Elliot has to be good Elliot. The guy that nails 61 yarders. Not the guy that misses 35 yarders and PATs. Just have to be perfect.

So if the Eagles can play a perfect game and knock the Saints off of theirs a bit, Eagles can win this.

Eagles 38, Saints 33

 
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I thought I read that the entire Saints OL is on the injury report this week. Is that correct?
Not all, most, but they have been as ‘limited’. But all are expected to play, except maybe Armstead, who is viewed here as an offensive weapon. Bushrod is no great shakes as a rep in this league but he’s a pro and is an improvement over the alternatives. Armstead being active would be a plus.

 
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For the Eagles defense, they have to find a way to slow the Saints down. Don't let them get chunk plays to Thomas and Kamara. Have to play their asses off to stop the run game as much as possible. Can't let up 173 yds on the ground like last time. Getting pressure up the middle in Brees' face is key. I don't think we'll sack him at all but if they can get in there and bat down a couple of early passes, that might frustrate him. Secondary needs to keep playing huge. Double team MT all game. Make Brees go elsewhere with it. It's just going to be tough on defense. Have to be perfect.
Great post. I'll just point something out - in Game 1 TreQuan Smith had a huge game, 13/10/157/1. Austin Carr had a TD, Dan Arnold and Kirkwood also got some play. Even Taysom Hill got a target. - Part of the Saints' "slowdown" recently has been about, besides the OL injuries woes, the involvement or lack of involvement of the other receiving pieces. Vs ATL at home the Saints had 4 TDs to 4 UDFA WRs and TEs, Arnold, Lewis, Kirkwood (Hey Temple, y'all), & Carr. That was 1 week after the Phi game, and the leading receiver was Dan Arnold (!) with 45 yards. The falcs totally limited Thomas and the result was a pretty thorough thrashing. The other targets did do pretty well as a whole, even while Brees threw for just 171. The longest run was 18 yards. I feel the Saints are weaker when they don't or can't spread it around like this, teams that did well relatively defensively like the Cowboys (and in the past the Seahawks) frustrated Brees by cutting down his outlets.

 
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Great post. I'll just point something out - in Game 1 TreQuan Smith had a huge game, 13/10/157/1. Austin Carr had a TD, Dan Arnold and Kirkwood also got some play. Even Taysom Hill got a target. - Part of the Saints "slowdown" recently has been about, besides the OL injuries woes, the involvement or lack of involvement of the other  receiving pieces. Vs ATL at home the Saints had 4 TDs to 4 UDFA WRs and TEs, Arnold, Lewis, Kirkwood, & Carr. That was 1 week after the Phi game, and the leading receiver was Dan Arnold (!) with 45 yards. The falcs totally limited Thomas and the result was a pretty thorough thrashing. The other targets did do pretty well as a whole, even while Brees threw for just 171. The longest run was 18 yards. I actually feel the Saints are weaker when they don't or can't spread it around like this, teams that did well relatively defensively like the Cowboys (and in the past the Seahawks) frustrated Brees by cutting down his outlets.
I feel like last game was a snowball affect. We had two DBs go down in that game and they were replaced with guys right off the street with no practice time. That was just asking for an ### whooping. This time those guys have had a chance to practice and understand the game plan plus we had a few injured players get healthy again. I'd rather take my chances with Smith, Kirkwood et al then letting Thomas have his way. And MT will still get his. I just want him to get 10 catches for 90 yards instead of 150. 

 
Last week I was pretty damn close to the score calling 16-13 win over the Bears. I was even going to mention a last second Parkey miss but didn't want to jinx it. I felt last week despite the records, the two teams were pretty evenly matched.

This week, the Saints are clearly better than the Eagles this season. They have multiple top tier weapons on offense, a HOF QB having an MVP type season, a defense that is playing really good and a kicker who is lights out. We can't sneak by like we did the Bears. Eagles have to play they're best game of the year and try to get the Saints to play down a bit. 

The keys are going to be the usual stuff. Foles has to be really good Foles. Last week's version was ok Foles. Great in crunch time but we can't have any interceptions in the end zone. We can't afford to lose possessions against the Saints. They almost have to be perfect on offense.

For the Eagles defense, they have to find a way to slow the Saints down. Don't let them get chunk plays to Thomas and Kamara. Have to play their asses off to stop the run game as much as possible. Can't let up 173 yds on the ground like last time. Getting pressure up the middle in Brees' face is key. I don't think we'll sack him at all but if they can get in there and bat down a couple of early passes, that might frustrate him. Secondary needs to keep playing huge. Double team MT all game. Make Brees go elsewhere with it. It's just going to be tough on defense. Have to be perfect.

For special teams, they have to have zero mistakes. Can't take it out of the end zone on kickoffs. Have to make the fair catch at the 15 or 20 instead of letting it bounce down to he 1. Need to win the field position game. Elliot has to be good Elliot. The guy that nails 61 yarders. Not the guy that misses 35 yarders and PATs. Just have to be perfect.

So if the Eagles can play a perfect game and knock the Saints off of theirs a bit, Eagles can win this.

Eagles 38, Saints 33
Good post. 

Whatever it was about Maddox biting on the double moves against Chicago has got to be resolved. Brees will chew him up if he makes that mistake. Defensively, we obviously need the defensive line to get pressure on Brees. That will cover up the weaknesses in the defensive backfield. Would love to have Barnett for this one.  Graham and Jernigan have to play out of their minds.

Offensively, they're a different team than the one who faced them during the regular season.  The N.O. game was Wentz' worst game as a pro. As they fell behind, he was forcing throws.  He threw nearly as many picks(3) in that game as he did the rest of the year (4) combined. Hoping the defense can keep it close and Foles can continue spreading it out.

I'm not sure if the Eagles could win in a shootout. I love your 38-33 score, but my fear is that we might not be able to hang with them in that type of game.  I have to keep my trust in BDN Magic and predict a 28-24 win.  I also think that if they can get past New Orleans, they're going to get their second ring.  This is the toughest one they'll have to play.

 
I thought I read that the entire Saints OL is on the injury report this week. Is that correct?
Starting center Max Unger is not on the injury report. But the other four starters, plus first backup tackle Jermon Bushrod, were all designated as ‘Limited Practice’ Wednesday and Thursday.

 
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Read a fascinating article about how the last time these teams played, there was a play where Kelce went out and Wiz replaced him. He and Saumalu blew the assignment and Wentz got crushed. At the time it was 17-7 but the Eagles were driving. That led to a punt and then the rout was on. Whole game potentially turned on that one play. 

 
Terron Armstead practiced in full and was removed from the injury report  :pickle:

EDIT: Actually, all the Saints’ offensive linemen got in in full practices today. I know they’re all playing with accumulated scrapes & bruises, but I’m glad they’ll all be available for Sunday.

 
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No offense to Philly or it's fans but I have a sneaking feeling the fairy tale ends in the Superdome. I don't think PHI has what it takes defensively to rein in the Saints at this point.

 
Eagles secondary is light years ahead of where they were, but I have a hard time seeing the Eagles win this without a perfect game. It wouldn't shock me, but I certainly wouldn't predict it either. I think the Eagles show up well, and play well. The game stays within reach until the fourth quarter when Thomas or Kamara make a big play.

Saints 31 Eagles 23. Hope I'm wrong.

 
No offense to Philly or it's fans but I have a sneaking feeling the fairy tale ends in the Superdome. I don't think PHI has what it takes defensively to rein in the Saints at this point.
As a Philly fan I agree. The saints just have it this year. While some other teams are faltering I think they are unbeatable unless someone plays damn near their perfect football. I know it’s crazy, but I’m starting to think an Indy/NO Super Bowl isn’t out of the question. 

 
Thoughts on Josh Adams?  Staff just not trust him to hop onto the ball?  I kind of think a big dose of him would be a good thing.

 

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