Aug 28, 2014; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton against the Baltimore Ravens during a preseason game at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Ravens defeated the Saints 22-13. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
Contrary to popular belief, the New Orleans Saints’ season is not over. However, if you haven’t heard the statistic yet about teams that start 0-2, here it comes:
Since 1990, only 12 percent of NFL teams (23 of 198) have made the playoffs
One might wonder, who are some of these teams? Let’s look at the historic Super Bowl teams that started 0-2 and ended up with some Super Bowl glory that you might have heard about.
1993 Dallas Cowboys, won Super Bowl XXVIII
Game 1 (9/6/93) – Lost 35-16 on road to Washington Redskins
Game 2 (9/12/93) – Lost 13-10 at home to Buffalo Bills
Game 3 (9/19/93) – Won 17-10 on road against Phoenix Cardinals
After starting 0-2, the Cowboys would win seven straight, and finish 12-4.
1996 New England Patriots, lost Super Bowl XXXI
Game 1 (9/1/96) – Lost 24-10 on road to Miami Dolphins
Game 2 (9/8/96) – Lost 17-10 on road to Buffalo Bills
Game 3 (9/15/96) – Won 31-0 at home against Arizona Cardinals
After starting 0-2, the Patriots would win seven of their next eight, and finish 11-5.
2001 New England Patriots, won Super Bowl XXXVI
Game 1 (9/9/01) – Lost 23-17 on road to Cincinnati Bengals
Game 2 (9/23/01) – Lost 10-3 at home to New York Jets
Game 3 (9/30/01) – Won 44-13 at home against Indianapolis Colts
After starting 0-2, the Patriots would fall to 1-3, but then nine of the final eleven games to finish 11-5, including six straight to close out the season.
2007 New York Giants, won Super Bowl XLII
Game 1 (9/9/07) – Lost 45-35 on road to Dallas Cowboys
Game 2 (9/16/07) – Lost 35-13 at home to Green Bay Packers
Game 3 (9/23/07) – Won 24-17 at home against Washington Redskins
After starting 0-2, the Giants would win six in a row, and would struggle down the stretch, but still finish 10-6.
So, would you believe that of the 2-0 teams currently, that we’ll have the Buffalo Bills and Houston Texans finishing in the playoffs this year? Last year’s Texans started 2-0, but then dropped 14 games in a row.
In fact, here’s the teams that started 2-0 last year: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, Saints, Bears, Dolphins, Chiefs. Who else didn’t make the playoffs last year? The Bears and Chiefs. The script can be flipped just as easily is my point, and as we talked about the facts from earlier, 63 percent of teams make the playoffs after starting 2-0.
This New Orleans Saints team is entirely too talented to simply rollover and play dead, and you should know better than that. If you focus blame solely on one person, then you are sadly mistaken (here comes clichés). You win as a team, and lose as a team. You’re only as good as your weakest link. Why bring this up? Because it’s true.
Is the pressure is on? Yes.
Are the next several games going to be tough? Absolutely, especially when you start 0-2.
Does the loss hurt? You better believe it.
Does the defense need to play better? Heck yeah, and so does the offense.
Are there positive things going on with the Saints? Yes! Wake up, and realize we didn’t get blown out.
So what’s the bottom line? The panic button has not been pressed. I’ll worry more about the season if we lose at home in the Superdome this week to the Minnesota Vikings, where the Saints went 8-0 last year. The Saints are just as likely to go on a ‘winning spree’ as they are to lose this season. Yes, the fact remains that the team has lost their last five regular season away games. However, have faith in your coaches, players, and the rest of the 14 games left in the season. That’s 88 percent of the season left for you math majors.
If you survived 2007, 2008, 2012, and anything prior to 2006, then you’ll be fine.
Stay the course, Who Dat Nation. This team needs you and your support.