this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Saints' Payton hopes turnovers won't be deciding factor Thursday, September 06, 2007 By Benjamin Hochman INDIANAPOLIS -- Noting that the Indianapolis Colts' Dwight Freeney has "unusual speed," and that scout team defensive end Willie Evans is, alas, a scout team ...
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Brown seeks help from speedy Bush
Saints' Payton hopes turnovers won't be deciding factor
Thursday, September 06, 2007 By Benjamin Hochman
INDIANAPOLIS -- Noting that the Indianapolis Colts' Dwight Freeney has "unusual speed," and that scout team defensive end Willie Evans is, alas, a scout team defensive end, Saints left tackle Jammal Brown had an idea.
After a practice this week, Brown sought out a teammate with unusual speed, to help simulate the stealth Freeney.
And so, running back Reggie Bush lined up at defensive end
"He got in a three-point stance and did some pass rushes on me," Brown said of Bush. "He worked me good. He's a fast guy. If I can come close to touching Reggie with his speed, I should be all right."
Brown and Bush never teamed up like this last season, Bush's first with the Saints. However, Brown didn't face an end like Freeney, one of the quickest in the NFL.
When Brown played at Oklahoma, he occasionally would ask a defensive back to take some snaps on the line.
"Here, Reggie's the best guy to use," Brown said. "With the crowd noise and everything it will be different, but practicing against Reggie definitely helped."
X FACTOR? Like any game where the teams, on paper, are closely matched, an X factor could come into play.
Saints Coach Sean Payton said that in tonight's season opener at Indianapolis, it could be turnovers.
"That statistic every year seems to be the one thing percentage-wise that you can point to, so I think that's important," Payton said. "I think being able to protect the football and trying to create turnovers can sway a game either way."
Last season, the division champion Saints were on the minus side of the takeaway-giveaway ratio, with 19 turnovers and 21 giveaways. The Super Bowl champion Colts were plus-seven with 25 and 18.
O CAPTAIN, D CAPTAIN: The Saints voted on captains this week, choosing quarterback Drew Brees and center Jeff Faine on offense, linebacker Scott Fujita and defensive end Will Smith on defense.
Aaron Stecker was selected special teams captain.
ARE YOU READY? The show won't go on.
At least not tonight.
With anticipation high for tonight's game, the Actor's Theatre of New Orleans moved opening night of "Game Show" from tonight to Friday, allowing would-be theater-goers to watch the Saints.
This rare Thursday season-opener meant rescheduling other Thursday night events.
Country Day pushed up its parents night for the lower school, so parents won't miss kickoff. The Zephyrs made the playoffs, but will play today at 1 p.m. instead of under the lights.
New Orleans lawyer Mark Surprenant is in New York City where tickets to tonight's U.S. Open await him.
"And I really love tennis," he said.
Instead, he plans to stay in his hotel room and watch the Saints with a friend, another lawyer who is postponing a dinner with a French executive.
"Hopefully, if the Saints win, we'll go celebrate out in Times Square," Surprenant said.
At rehearsal for "Game Show," Chelle Ambrose said everyone was so engrossed with the theater that they just forgot about the season opener.
"And I said 'Uh-oh,' " said Ambrose, the director of finance for the theater.
So the cast will have one final dress rehearsal tonight before the curtains go up Friday. However, that means the cast and crew still will miss the game.
"I know I'll make some calls and ask the score," said Ambrose, who also runs lights and sound for the show.
And one local fan, devoted to Thursday night bible study, is skipping out to travel to the game. However, the fan wanted to remain anonymous, fearing that the pastor would be upset (or jealous).
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"We may have lost the game, but you'll be hurting tomorrow." Doug Atkins