Friday, February 05, 2010

Prediction Friday? Super Bowl Edition

I am not going to rehash last week’s Super Bowl pick much. I don't want to inflame the proletarius too much. The line opened with a frankly absurd Indianapolis -2.5 over New Orleans. As predicted, it quickly rallied to the Colts giving six- before settling down to five in the wake of the Dwight Freeney saga. If it appears he is going to play, this still cheap line will go to six and a hook, maybe seven.

This increasing number further illustrates a consensus in Vegas that the Saints best football was probably back in November. Put it this way, I think the 9-7 Jets, admittedly playing their best football in January, would probably be a narrow favorite over the Saints here. The Colts were seven over New York at home- a real similar line to New Orleans here at a neutral site. I would not have been surprised to see the Jets -1 over the Saints here. That would shock people- but just do the math. Put this game in Indy, the Colts would approach a whopping nine, ten.
Manning dumped a ton of big scoring on the Jets' defense in little more than a half, once he figured New York out. At season’s end, the Jets' defense was one of the best in the League- a claim hard to make about New Orleans. The Saints are damned opportunistic- but those are mistakes they’re simply not going to get Sunday. Gregg Williams isn’t going to keep the Colts under thirty. Heck, they couldn't keep the Vikes out of the end zone four times with five turnovers in their own building.

In November, the Saints could keep up score for score- but Dallas showed attacking the interior of the New Orleans’ offensive line with the pass rush could control, albeit not stop, the Saints attack. Indianapolis can do that- and keep the Saints from the five TD scores they’ll need to win this thing.

My only real concern is that my fave public prognosticator likes the Saints. The respected Wildcat says:
It’s tough to resist the drumbeat accompanying the canonization of Peyton Manning; he is awesome, the vital cog, a coach who can play with all the answers. But Drew Brees put on some sensational natural grass shows this season, especially Miami and Philadelphia. Opportunistic, turnover-creating defense, superior running game, Reggie Bush running in open space- and you’re getting points!
But I think that is just it. I don’t believe running the football means much in the pro-game. You’re just taking snaps away from Drew Brees. Manning isn’t going to turn the ball over. And having your season depend on Reggie Bush... well, I’ll take that bet gladly. Colts -5 for me.