Kickoff season previews  


Saints set up for another run at Super Bowl

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New Orleans Saints
2010 record: 11-5 (Second in NFC South)

Fearless Forecast

  • Jason La Canfora

    Quite simply, this is as complete a team as there will be in the league.
    Prediction: 12-4, first in NFC South

  • Steve Wyche

    The defense seems poised to get back to its opportunistic ways with more beef on the defensive line to pressure quarterbacks. An improved running game will open up the passing game more and make an already unpredictable offense even scarier.
    Prediction: 11-5, first in NFC South

  • Pat Kirwan

    They left unfinished business on the field last year and really came to camp with a great focus and more weapons on defense.
    Prediction: 11-5, first in NFC South

  • Bucky Brooks

    Sean Payton's re-energized offense faces a soft early season schedule that could result in significant lead over their counterparts.
    Prediction: 13-3, first in NFC South

  • Elliot Harrison

    THE forgotten team of 2011. The defense might falter without some of its 2010 components, but there were some nice unheralded additions in the offseason. The offense is the best in football ... and I trust Drew Brees more than Matt Ryan.
    Prediction: 11-5, first in NFC South

On the hot seat

Darren Sproles | #43 | RB

Sean Payton replaces Reggie Bush with a multi-purpose weapon with better running skills. How he opts to utilize Sproles' versatility could add another dimension to the Saints' offense.

3 Pivotal Games
Week 1 at Packers
The Saints open the season on the big stage, playing in the Thursday night kickoff game that features the last two Super Bowl champions. This will be a stiff test for Drew Brees and Co., who no doubt will deal with a raucous Lambeau Field crowd. This is as good as early-season football gets.
Week 7 vs. Colts
The Saints take a pleasant trip down memory lane when they host the Colts, the team they toppled to claim the Super Bowl XLIV title. This is a game loaded with premium matchups, none better than at the quarterback spot with perennial All-Pros Brees and Peyton Manning.
Week 16 vs. Falcons
This rivalry hit a new level last year when Atlanta unseated New Orleans as the NFC South champion. This late-season showdown will likely have massive playoff ramifications. Both teams were aggressive this offseason in an attempt to improve their rosters and expect to make deep postseason runs.



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