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SmashMouth 08-14-2010 11:51 AM

The 2010 NFL season in 10 story lines Read more: http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl/article/2010-08-13/2010-nfl-season-10-story-lines#ixzz0wbFtLASt
 
3. Don't write off a repeat
As the 2010 season approaches, few league observers regard the Saints as a legitimate threat to win Super Bowl 45 and it's not because of their strengths or weaknesses, but because they've just won the last one.
The concerns are legitimate. The Saints embarked on an extended victory lap after winning it all, culminating in a White House visit that encroached on the 2010 training camp. Also, with 31 other teams arguably wanting to win it all a little bit more than the team that's still working a toothpick over the remnants of Fat Sunday, when the going gets tough in 2010 the Saints could decide to say, "We've already climbed that mountain."
One team that won't be taking the Saints for granted is the Falcons. After racking up two straight winning seasons for the first time in franchise history, Atlanta will want to knock off the Saints worse than any other team. Whether the Falcons have enough to get past the defending champs could depend on how badly the champs want to defend.
The consensus that the Saints won't be able to do it again plays into their hands. What better way to get the team to not rest on its laurels than to persuade the players that their accomplishments have been undermined by those who believe it was a one-time fluke? Look for coach Sean Payton and quarterback Drew Brees to exploit that angle to the fullest, and for the Saints to make another march toward the playoffs, and possibly beyond.


Read more: The 2010 NFL season in 10 story lines - Mike Florio - NFL - Sporting News


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