5) 49ers lack playoff experience
~ This franchise hasn’t been to the postseason since 2002. Although Harbaugh has done a good job this year, he has benefited from an easy schedule, and hasn’t beaten a great team this year. This is the first playoff game for most of the members of the team, so there will obviously eb jitters with their unstable quarterback. Gregg Williams knows this, so he is definitely going to come flying at him with all sorts of blitz packages to confuse the inexperienced Smith. Speaking of blizting Smith…
6) Although it was a preseason game, August 12th told alot
~ The Saints defeated the 49ers 24-3 on August 12th in a meaningless preseason game. Although that will have no impact on Saturday’s playoff game, it showed what the Saints are capable of doing to this offensive line. The Saints first and second units recorded six sacks in the FIRST HALF against this team. Williams knows how, where, and when to blitz them and how to get to Smith. There is no doubt Smith remembers that game in his mind, and it will increase his anxiety facing this defense.
7) The weather will cooperate
~ Although many people think of the Saints as a “dome” team, they only lost on the road this year because they were playing the defending champs in front of an emotional crowd, a night in which defending champions are 7-0 in those specific games. Their head coach got both bones in his leg split in half in the middle of the other loss, completely catching the Saints off-guard and messing up their offensive rhythm. It still confuses me how the Saints lost to the Rams, but they had an unprepeared team and much different offensive line than they do now. But this Saturday it will be 60 degrees in San Fransisco, perfect for the Saints high-flying offense to throw all over the 49ers secondary.
8) Thomas Morstead
~ The most underrated player on the entire Saints roster will prove to be vital in this game. His NFL record of touchbacks will give the pourous 49er offense a long field. And in the case where the Saints offense rarely gets stopped, Morstead will use his powerful leg to boot Smith and company with another long field task. By the way, the Saints didn’t even have to punt once this past weekend.
9) Drew Brees is just simply unstoppable
~ Just try to stop this guy. Ever since the first sign of the apocalypse was shown when the Rams beat the Saints, Brees has been on fire. The only interceptions he has thrown since then have been tipped balls, and he just threw for 466 yards and 3 touchdowns against a playoff team. I understand the 49ers lead the league in turnovers, playing in a division with Tarvaris Jackson, John Skelton, and Sam Bradford’s backups playing this entire year. But Brees is far ahead of that class. He has vastly improved on his game, by just carving up defenses. Sean Payton will max-protect Brees this week, giving him enough time to split the defense in half. The 49ers even know Brees is unstoppable, so good luck holding the Saints to under 25 points, while your 29th ranked passing attack plays catch-up.
10) Sean Payton and his staff are prepared
~ This is the main reason as to why I think that the Saints should win this game. Sean Payton understands going on the road will be tough, and not playing on the Superdome turf will be difficult. He also knows that protecting Brees against the 49ers front seven will be vital towards the team’s success. I beleieve that he will go through all the necessary precautions in order for the Saints to win this game. Many people don’t know this, but Sean payton and Jim Harbaugh aren’t the best of friends. before their August 12th preseason game, John Harbaugh didn’t call Sean Payton to go through the gameplan discussion as most coaches do before a preseason game. That is why Payton blitzed so much back in August. This definitely has remained in Payton’s mind as he prepares for this game. He is planning to take it to this team. Although, the thing that can really encourage Saints fans as to why Sean Payton is prepared is because he is flying his team out to San Fransisco on Thursday night. This will give the entire team a feel for the grass in Candlestick Park and have the players prepared for the field they will be battling on. Sean Payton is ready. The Saints are ready.
Tags: 2012 NFC Divisional Round Aldon Smith Alex Smith Calvin Johnson Detroit Lions Drew Brees Jabari Greer Justin Smith Lance Moore Matchup Matthew Stafford NaVorro Bowman New Orleans Saints NFC NFC Divisional Round NFL Patrick Willis San Francisco 49′ers