Found December 29, 2012 on
The Saints Nation:
New Orleans Saints
The Saints will conclude their 2012 campaign and I have mixed emotions about it. Like any NFL season, including the Super Bowl winning 2009 season, I don't want it to end. So there's a fair amount of sadness attached to my Sundays opening up again and a big void being placed in my fanhood. Conversely, I think we can all agree that this season can pretty much go F itself (pardon my language) and we've felt this way from the very beginning given the fact that we knew it was an uphill battle the minute the offseason started pretty much. But this will have to serve as our own personal Super Bowl for the season, and dammit, 8-8 just feels a lot better than 7-9. I don't want a losing season. So let's hope the Saints can close it out with a big win over their division rivals. Here are five things I'm looking for, for the last time this season.
1. The last time in a Saints jersey for a number of guys?
I can pretty much guarantee this is the end of the road for Scott Shanle (who may not even dress), Devery Henderson, Sedrick Ellis and Jonathan Vilma. Maybe I'm wrong about one or two, but I'm going to enjoy watching those guys knowing full well this easily could be the last time. Jermon Bushrod and Will Smith are two long timers that could also be packing their bags. Even guys under contract like Chris Ivory and Roman Harper may not be in the mix next year. Every single one of those guys I just listed has had great moments in a Saints uniform and they played hard for the team. Tomorrow could be it.
2. Can the Saints flush Cam Newton out of the pocket to his left?
Cam has had a major regression this season after a breakout rookie campaign. He and his team have been red hot as of late, but most of that came after the team was already eliminated from playoff contention. Cam's struggles this year have been attributed to teams overloading pressure to the right side, forcing him to roll out of the pocket to his left. The scouting report on him says he doesn't throw the ball as accurately running to his left and many teams have been effective slowing him down by doing this. Will Spagnuolo come up with the right scheme to make this happen, and if so, will it work?
3. Chris Ivory gets another shot.
With Pierre Thomas unceremoniously placed on IR for the final game and Ivory mostly recovered from a bad hamstring that's kept him out, this is Ivory's last opportunity to show off his power running style. I have a feeling he's going to get a lot of carries in this game. He will split the bulk of the carries with Ingram.
4. Is the young defensive backfield improving?
We've seen great things from Isa Abdul-Quddus, Rafael Bush and Elbert Mack at times the last few weeks, and some not so good things too. But, they have all three stated their case for deserving to return next season, and possibly getting a crack at a starting spot. This is their last chance in a full game to leave an impression on the staff. Will the last impression be "meh, this guy is good on special teams and gives us depth" or will it be "there is no way we can keep playing the vets over them"?
5. Where does a win/loss put the Saints, draft position wise?
I'm not going to root for a Saints loss, even in a meaningless game. I refuse to do it and I can't bring myself to it. But, I'm still very interested in where the Saints will pick in the draft. Because let's be honest, the minute that game ends tomorrow that is the next big date for us with no playoffs (the NFL draft). The Saints could still roughly pick anywhere between 10 and 17 depending on what they and other teams do on Sunday.
Enjoy the game! I'll be in the Superdome for this one so apologies in advance for less tweeting/updates in real time, timely blog posts as usual. HAPPY NEW YEAR!
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
The New Orleans Saints' last-ranked defense has allowed more yards in a season than any defense in NFL history.
The Saints have allowed 287 yards in the first half of Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers, surpassing by 6 yards the mark of 6,793 yards allowed by the 1981 Baltimore Colts.
The mark has been set in the final game of defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo...
Drew Brees has passed for more than 5,000 yards, making him the only player to do so in a season three times.
The Saints quarterback surpassed the coveted yardage mark with a touchdown pass to Jimmy Graham in the third quarter of Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers. That was also the 41st scoring pass for the season for Brees, the only quarterback to pass for 40 TDs...
In a game that saw Drew Brees once again make NFL history, the Saints defense couldn't stop the Carolina Panthers from rallying to a victory 44-38. Cam Newton was 16 for 33 with 248 YDS and 1 INT, but it was in the running backs' hands in the red zone. Mike Tolbert had three 1-yard TD runs. DeAngelo Williams ran wild, for 201 yards to be exact, including big TD runs...
Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints are about to close the book on a season that may forever be defined by the word ''bounty.'' They want to do it by avoiding the ''losing team'' label, even if the playoffs are out of reach.
The Panthers had no such scandal overshadowing their season, only the disappointment of failing to reach expectations that...
Saints tight end Jimmy Graham had just his second 100-yard game of the season Sunday versus Carolina while also catching his ninth touchdown.Fantasy Spin:Graham's numbers -- 85 catches, 982 yards, 9 touchdowns -- look nice but fantasy owners expected more from a first- or second-rounder.
Week 17 Fantasy News and Notes
New Orleans Saints placed Pierre Thomas on injured reserve, ending his season. Thomas’s knee has been a nagging injury since week 16 and the team has decided to shut him down. The player I feel that could really step up is Mark Ingram. The forgotten first-rounder has been wasting away in the Saints backfield and Sunday could be a perfect opportunity...
The New Orleans Saints and suspended coach Sean Payton will indeed be together again next season as the bounty scandal fades into history and the bid to win a second Super Bowl resumes.
Payton has agreed in principle to a multiyear contract extension, the team said.
Though the team did not disclose the length of the extension or financial terms, ESPN is reporting the deal is expected...
Tweet At one point it seemed like Drew Brees’ career was over. In 2005, while with the San Diego Chargers, he suffered a torn labrum as well as a partial tear of the rotator cuff in his throwing shoulder and was facing surgery and extensive rehab. San Diego opted to not re-sign him and [...]
NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- Two people familiar with the deal say suspended New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton has agreed in principle to a multiyear contract extension.
The people told The Associated Press about the deal Friday on condition of anonymity because it hasn't been signed and final details regarding the length of the contract and financial compensation are still being...
Sean Payton has agreed to a contract extension with the New Orleans Saints, Jay Glazer of FOX Sports reports.
Details have not come out about the price tag of the deal, but the length is for five years, per ESPN’s Adam Shefter.
The NFL suspended Payton for the entire 2012 season after the league’s investigation into the Saints’ bounty scandal.
After staring the season with...
Sources have reported that the New Orleans Saints and Sean Payton have agreed to a five year deal for Payton to stay as the Saints head coach. There was an extension already in place, but the NFL rejected the deal since there was a stipulation that allowed Sean to part ways with the Saints if their general manager Mickey Loomis was no longer part of the organization.
Jay Glazer of Fox Sports reports that the New Orleans Saints and head coach Sean Payton have “agreed in principle” on a five-year contract.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter adds that the deal is similar to the deal that the two sides agreed upon last year and will keep him in New Orleans through the 2017 season.
The deal should be finalized once Payton’s suspension is lifted...
Despite rumors to the contrary, coach Sean Payton will not
be leaving the New Orleans Saints following the 2012 season. The Super
Bowl-winning coach reached an agreement with the Saints on a multi-year
extension, reports Jay Glazer of FOX Sports.
Payton, the suspended Saints head coach whose future in New
Orleans was in doubt because of questions about his contract, has agreed...