We may have to learn to accept watching two other teams playing in our stadium for the Lombardi Trophy this season, but it doesn’t mean the team isn’t making progress. No, I’m not saying we can’t make the playoffs this year, but we don’t just have a hill to climb: we have a mountain standing in front of us.
The Saints don’t have a lot of wiggle room left. We face the toughest team in the NFC next Sunday: the Atlanta Falcons, but at least we face them at home. That still leaves us facing the 49ers in Week 12 at home, the Falcons again in Week 12 at the Georgia Dome, and a daunting task in December.
In December we won’t be playing in our cozy home-dome; we’ll be freezing our buns off at MetLife Stadium facing the defending Super Bowl champion Giants and a hostile crowd. It bears mentioning that in Week 12 we have to play San Fransisco on a Sunday, then travel to Atlanta to play the Falcons the following Thursday. No matter the outcome this Sunday the Georgia Dome game will feel like fighting lions in the Roman Colosseum.
So why do I say we’re building a bridge? Simple: because we started building in in 2010, we just haven’t gotten it across the river yet. I guess you could say that construction got shut down in the offseason this year while we fought the village idiots in the media and the NFL. It’s also fair to say that we haven’t gotten many bridge pilings seated yet in a new zone defense, but that may be starting to change.
Last Sunday we finally stopped spinning our wheels and got some defensive traction.
The bottom line: Regardless of how this season ends we can be sure that it will be a “new ball game” next year. We’ll get our head coach Sean Payton signed to a new contract, we’ll draft some good zone defense players, and we’ll start all over again. Barring a new attack upon the Saints by the NFL all the Saints management, coaching staff and Saints players will be ready to kick butt.
Next season it’s payback time.