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Keys to the Game: 49ers vs. Saints

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Closing Thoughts

November 25, 2012; New Orleans, LA, USA; San Francisco 49ers outside linebacker Ahmad Brooks (55) and inside linebacker Patrick Willis (52) combine to sack New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees (9) during the second half of a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The 49ers defeated the Saints 31-21. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Did You Know?

  • This is the 74th meeting between these two teams (San Francisco leads the all-time series 47-24-2)
  • The Saints have won six out of the last seven regular season matchups, dating back to 2002
  • The 2000’s decade was the first time the Saints had a winning record (7-2) against the 49ers since the 1960’s
  • Drew Brees has a 5-1 career regular season record over the 49ers, completing 67% of his passes, throwing for 1,742 yards, 15TD-4INT, and a 103.5 Rating. The 49ers are one of five teams Drew has caught a pass against for positive yards (1-7). The others? Colts (1-2), Eagles (1-8), Raiders (1-21), Broncos (1-38).
  • Irony? Marques Colston broke Deuce McAllister’s franchise record for touchdowns in last year’s matchup. This year, Colston can become the Saints all-time leader in receiving yards. Colston needs just 11 yards to pass Eric Martin’s record of 7,834 yards.

Saints Injury Report

  • OUT: TE Ben Watson (Concussion), S Kenny Vaccaro (Concussion)
  • PROBABLE: S Roman Harper (Knee), S Malcolm Jenkins (Hamstring), DE Tyrunn Walker (Knee), DE Cameron Jordan (Ankle), LB Curtis Lofton (Hamstring/Ankle), DT Akiem Hicks (Back), TE Jimmy Graham (Elbow/Foot)

Before the start of the season, I ranked this game #3 on my list, and it certainly still ranks in the top 5 matchups, easily. This game is one both teams need, as the Saints still need to keep pace with the Seahawks for a shot at having Dome Field Advantage, and the 49ers need to win because of the teams behind them. The 49ers currently hold the #6 playoff seed in the NFC, but a loss could mean the Bears, Packers, or Cardinals, who are all 5-4, could move ahead of them. Even the Eagles, who are 5-5, are very alive in the race at this point.

You know this will not be roses and daisies whatsoever. It will be a very physical matchup, which will take its toll on the players. I believe it could be a very back and forth game, maybe even a stalemate at first, but in the end, it’s hard to overlook the fact that Saints are playing at home, and know what’s at stake. They’re healthier, and they’re just flat-out dangerous right now. With the short week, they need this win, and I know they’ll get it.

Final Prediction: Saints 30, 49ers 20

What’s your final game prediction? Let us know below!

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