Saints can make history by beating all the ‘bird’ teams in 2022 season

Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, New Orleans Saints (Photo by Edward M. Pio Roda/Getty Images)
Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, New Orleans Saints (Photo by Edward M. Pio Roda/Getty Images) /

The New Orleans Saints enter a rare but exciting “bird” gauntlet in the 2022 season — will the team be the first to flip the Birds in the NFL?

The Saints finally got the ball rolling with the Jarvis Landry and Tyrann Mathieu signings, adding to an already beefed up and competitive roster this offseason. Key draft picks like Chris Olave along with the crucial return of Michael Thomas and Jameis Winston could see NOLA’s offense explode in 2022, and if so, a handful of records could be broken.

Olave could break Ja’Marr Chase’s rookie single-game receiving yardage totals, or Mathieu could set a league-high in interceptions this season.

But another zany piece of history hangs over the Saints’ heads, a feat that can only be achieved once in a blue moon: the Saints could beat all five “bird” teams in the NFL within a single season.

The bird teams are as follows: NOLA plays the Atlanta Falcons in Week 1 and Week 15 as a pair of regular division matchups. The team plays the Seattle Seahawks in Week 5, the Arizona Cardinals in Week 7, the Baltimore Ravens in Week 9, and the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 17.

New Orleans Saints will have their chance to defeat all the NFL bird teams in 2022

That’s all five bird teams in the NFL, and so far in the league’s history, no team has ever accomplished a full “bird” sweep in the same season.

Given that four of the bird teams exist in the NFC, any team trying to beat all the birds naturally has to be in the NFC too. Another caveat is that each team can only try this once every four years because that’s how often they would face the Ravens in the AFC North.

The last time a team faced every bird team was fairly recently in 2020. The Dallas Cowboys played against each of the five teams in the regular season but lost to Seattle in Week 3 — hopefully, the Saints can get a bit farther this year.

So here we are, in 2022, on the cusp of a curious slice of history being made. We think the toughest matchups for the Saints will be against the Ravens and Cardinals, but at least NOLA has fortified both its offense and defense ahead of the upcoming season.

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Will the Saints soar to new heights and crush all the birds, or will they get pecked off and lose their golden opportunity to accomplish an ultra-rare feat?