History on Saints' side
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It's hard to envision a scenario where the Vikings can go on the road and beat New Orleans on Thursday. But, then again, I'm more of an AFC guy.
Brett Favre and His Quest To Not Throw Another Game-Ending Pick In the NFC Title Game will be on display again. But, in the end, I just don't see how any team is going to go into the Superdome on the night the Saints' kick off the defense of their magical run to the title and beat them.
We can look at Xs and Os. I know the storyline will center around Favre, his ankle, and his second choke-job in an NFC championship game in three years. And, while the Vikings are still a very good team, it's hard for me to see how they've gotten demonstrably better. Favre had one of -- if not the best -- seasons of his storied career a year ago. Does anyone really think there's room for him to get better? He'll be without his favorite target in Sidney Rice. Difference-maker Percy Harvin is an enigma with his headaches. The last time Adrian Peterson played in the Superdome it was all he could do to stop putting the ball on the carpet.
That's not to say that the Saints don't have some question marks of their own, with some holes on defense including the absence of safety Darren Sharper. But, we're to expect this Vikings team to go into the Superdome on the night the Saints raise their Super Bowl Banner and win? History would say no, since each of the last 10 Super Bowl champs has opened the next season with a victory.
At the end of the day, I'm dodging a lot of the pre-game for this, as I can only listen to about thirteen seconds a day of Brett Favre talk before my ears start to bleed. Just the same, I'll be tuning in to see the Superdome as they lift a championship banner, a little part of me will giggle each time they show Favre's interception from last year, and the voyeur in me will admit that even though I'm sick of hearing about him I'll tune in to watch to see how Favre plays.
It won't matter, though. On this night, there will be no denying the Saints and the energy of Who-Dat Nation. Saints 27, Vikings 20.
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