Evaluating the New Orleans Saints’ Offseason So Far

bridgewater-brees-08312018-us-news-getty-ftr_11yz7a3o2b60d14c6cwtlaygv8The New Orleans Saints have signed running back Latavius Murray from the Minnesota Vikings. Today the team and Murray agreed to terms of 4 years $14.4 Million per Adam Schefter. Murray had spend the past 2 years at the Vikings my way of the Oakland Raiders. The 5 year player from UCF has certainly made an impact in the league with 899 touches, 3,698 yards, and 34 touchdowns. However, most of his time in the league he has been splitting time with more formidable running backs. His role is expected to be very similar to what Mark Ingram has been for the past 2 years for the Saints as more of a complementary back to Alvin Kamara. Not a bad signing since he has been a very consistent running back in this league; however, I think I speak for most Saints fans when I say that I would much rather have Mark Ingram to be Alvin’s partner in the backfield.

In addition to adding Murray, Teddy Bridgewater is now expected to be re-signed by the Saints rather than taking a much larger deal from the Miami Dolphins. NFL sources have said that he would much rather stay with the Saints because he said he values the locker room culture and the prospect of one day becoming the Saints’ starting quarterback. If you ask Drew Brees about the possibility of that being the case, he would say that he agreed. Drew has said a few times that the guy he wants to replace him is Teddy Bridgewater.

NFL: Washington Redskins at New Orleans Saints

So then what does this mean for Mark Ingram? It means that the Saints won’t be able to re-sign the fan favorite because he probably is too much for them. Even before the Saints re-signed Teddy Bridgewater and signed Latavius Murray, Mark Ingram was looking for upwards of $7 million a year, and the Saints weren’t going to be able to afford that. Its really unfortunate because that backfield was so fun. We hate to see Mark go, but we wish him all the best, and I’m sure he knows he has a home in New Orleans.

 

-Parmesan Don

@soft7parm

Championship Weekend

Fine, I’ll say it. I’m an idiot. I picked the Colts and the Chargers, which is why I tend to write only about baseball or WWE. But hey, who cares. I lost 2 bets last week, so I’m due. That’s how it works, right? Probably, who knows but I have 2 LOCKS for this week so stay tuned.

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This will be the game of the day, I promise. The Saints are -3.5 and I’d put money on the Saints moneyline, the Rams +3.5, and the under 56.5. The Saints and Rams played one another in week 9, with the Saints winning 45-35. The biggest take away from that game is how Michael Thomas ran all over the Rams DB’s and how Sean Peyton almost made Marcus Peters cry like a lil bitch. This game will be a running game and I think it truly comes down to which team has the better backs which is the Saints right now. Sean Peyton and Drew Brees are 6-0 in the dome, so they have magic on their side too. I think Kamara and Ingram take over the game and the Saints have 3-4 drives like they did against the Eagles in the 3rd quarter last week, where they took 9 minutes to march the field. If the Saints do they, if they control the clock by having an effective run, I think the Saints win. If it comes down to a fast paced passing game, the advantage has to go to the Rams solely to due to the fact that the Saints D is skeptical at best. With the Rams, yeah they’re facing the best QB of all time in Brees, but their D has shown time and time again that they are consistent. I’ll take the Saints 24-21.

This game is going to be boring, here’s why. Belichick knows how to win in January and he will own this game from the first snap. He is going to slow the game down tremendously by just feeding Sonny Michel and James White. The Chiefs are -3 and the over/under is 56. I would take Patriots +3 and the under 56. Bill will run his game and his D will key on Mahomes and he just won’t be able to do his normal strut. They played already this season, granted it was early, but the Patriots won 43-40. I do not think this game will be anywhere close to as fun as the first and the Patriots win 31-10.

NFC Playoff Prediction

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4 Dallas Cowboys at 2 Los Angeles Rams, 8:15 p.m. ET

The Dallas Cowboys seemed to be in pretty good control over the Seattle Seahawks this past weekend despite what the final score showed. We all know what this defense can do, and they proved that they could shut down another premier quarterback in Russell Wilson. The difference between the Seahawks and the LA Rams, though, is that they Cowboys now have to game plan for both a stellar passing game with Jared Goff, and a really strong running game with Todd Gurley.

The Cowboys are no slouch on offense either. Ezekiel Elliott is considered one of the best running backs in the league and he’s proven it time and time again. They also have seemed to revitalize their passing game with the mid-season addition of Amari Cooper. The real problem that I see for the Cowboys is who they have playing quarterback. I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again, Dak Prescott is one of the most overrated quarterbacks in the NFL. He might not even be overrated, I think others agree with me. If teams want to beat the Cowboys, it seems like the recipe for that is to just keep the ball in Dak’s hands and force him to throw.

The Ram’s defense is extremely impressive, especially their d-line. They have the potential NFL defensive player of the year in Aaron Donald. In addition, they have Ndamukong Suh and Michael Brockers. Their secondary is strong as well, and that might be what causes this game to be an issue for the Cowboys.

I predict that, since the Rams are playing at home in LA, they are able to handle the Cowboys with no problem. Rams win and move on to the NFC Championship game. Final score 27-17.

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6 Philadelphia Eagles at 1 New Orleans Saints, 4:40 p.m. ET

The defending Super Bowl champs have made it past a very strong Chicago Bears team on the road. No Bear weather though, like I said. Eagles have had a resurgence since the starting of the humble leader Nick Foles. The man, can play. I have to give it to him. Also, the teams really likes to play for him. We forget that they are still the team that won the Super Bowl last year. They haven’t changed much. They still have the impressive defense that can really help control the game for them. While their offense isn’t as impressive, they still seem to keep them in the game. Zach Ertz might be the best TE in the league.

Unfortunately for the Eagles, they don’t really have a rushing attack, and the lack of dynamic against this New Orleans Saints’ defense might be a problem. The Saints’ defense is extremely good against the run, and they can get to the quarterback. If the Eagles can’t establish a rushing game then they lose that dynamic and would have to rely on Nick Foles to lead the team, which is fine, but then they are one dimensional. I don’t see any way this Eagles offense can get anything done.

The Saints’ offense on the other hand is extremely dynamic with future Hall of Famer Drew Brees leading the passing game, Michael Thomas receiving, and then the two headed monster of Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram. The Saints’ offense is just going to roll over this team.

I see no way that the Nick Foles magic continues, and the Saints stomp the Eagles. Final score 41-20.

NFC Championship Game: Saints vs. Rams

So then this would leave us with a rematch of the Saints vs. Rams game which took place back in week 9. In that game the Saints handled the Rams pretty well. Just like that game, this game will be played in New Orleans. Usually, I do not like picking teams when there is a revenge game, because teams are usually out for blood. The Saints however, do not have to worry about the Rams’ passing defense, and the Saints can trow the ball. Drew Brees carved up the Rams defense last time and I see no reason for them to do it again.

The Rams, let’s be honest, aren’t as good as they were when the teams first played. The last time they played, Cooper Kupp was still healthy. I think this will almost be a mirror image of the last game, except the a little lower scoring. I think the Saints set their sights at the Super Bowl.

Saints beat the Rams to win the NFC Championship. Final score of 31-21.

-Parmesan Don

@parmesandon

I Want the Saints to Win Super Bowl LIII

As a Broncos fan through and through, I must come to terms with the reality of my situation. We, in almost all likelihood, will not be making the playoffs this year. So what am I going to do come January 5th? Not watch? Talk to my family? Do my schoolwork? HA, of course not. I am just going to pick another team to root for during these trying times. I have elected to join Parmesan Don (follow him @Soft7Parm) and the Who Dat Nation.

I want the New Orleans Saints to win Super Bowl LIII. But why?

Drew Brees
Soft 7 Sports is an advocate for the Drew Brees GOAT of all time discussion. We fight on the front lines arguing against that system quarterback and that gremlin sounding ketchup lover. Really we love Drew Brees. He is the best QB in the league right now/ever and will win his first MVP this season. Also how could you not like this guy? Running Routes with his kids, beating all 32 NFL teams (Brady could never), and being a 6 foot tall dude who can dunk a football on the goal post with pads on. Gotta have mad respect for this dude.

Michael Thomas
Not only is Michael Thomas an incredible football player, but he stole the hearts of millions. His recreation of Joe Horn’s legendary cell phone celebration cost him $30k, but all true football fans know that it was well worth it. He made himself a meme. Look at how relatable he is! 

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Taysom Hill
My favorite player in the NFL right now. He is listed as the back-up quarterback, but really should be listed as a general athlete. He takes snaps as the QB for read options but Sean Payton actually lets him throw the ball too. Hill also lines up as wide receiver, running back, and even as punt returner. If I saw him line up as free safety for one play on Thanksgiving, that would make my entire holiday. Not only does he play every position except kicker, he is also one of the fastest guys on the team. With sprint speed that rivals Ted Ginn Jr., Hill is the most exciting player in the NFL without a history of domestic abuse. Also, have you seen my man’s calves?

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Larry Warford
There is not a whole lot of Kentucky players in the NFL. As a born-Kentuckian, life-long Kentucky fan, and Kentucky Alum; I must cherish each and every Wildcat in the NFL. Up there with Randall Cobb, Danny Trevathan, Wesley Woodyard, and Bud Dupree; Warford is definitely one of the best Cats. I’d love to see another one win a Super Bowl.

If they win
A Saints win in the Super Bowl would mean that Tom Brady, Bill Bellichick, and the New England Patriots won’t. That is the true treasure in all of this.