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Us vs. the rest of the Division

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Anyone else wonder that if because our only major worry is at MLB, that's a plus? Here's why (Coaching, Brooks opinions aside) I see other major problems in the division... IE CAR -- problem at OL TB -- problem with ...

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Old 07-08-2004, 01:47 AM   #1
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Us vs. the rest of the Division

Anyone else wonder that if because our only major worry is at MLB, that's a plus?
Here's why (Coaching, Brooks opinions aside) I see other major problems in the division...
IE CAR -- problem at OL
TB -- problem with lacking talent
ATL -- new coach, Vick's health

I still fear everyone in the division, but we've got some pieces in place.
Talented pieces...
My question is, can we say RIGHT NOW we are ahead of the division?
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Old 07-08-2004, 02:05 AM   #2
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Us vs. the rest of the Division

IMO - No, I cannot say we are ahead of anyone in the division.

Tampa -- They have the potential of really dropping off. But, they have the potential to be much better on offense. And I don\'t think the defense is going to be bad at all.

Atlanta -- They\'ve got plenty of weapons on offense and if all else fails they\'ve got Mike Vick.

Carolina -- Their defense is going to keep them in just about every game.

As far as we go....... There\'s a lot of ???

[Edited on 8/7/2004 by GumboBC]
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Old 07-08-2004, 07:11 AM   #3
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Us vs. the rest of the Division

I think its kinda funny.
Atlanta-Finished 5-11 with the worst defense on the planet. Yet Vick\'s return makes them an 11-5 team? I thought injuries were no excuse. But one player is going to turn this team around 6 games, with a 1st year coach? Laugable. 8-8 would be a good season for this crew.

Carolina-See 2001 Bears. Should continue to be strong but luck usually doesn\'t last two seasons. The only legitimate threat to take this division, and that may be kind. 9-7 or 10-6 is the best they will do.

Tampa Bay-Was a team on the decline in 2003 and lost several key players. They are the 2003 Raiders of the NFC South. DFL for the bucs. 7-9 and Gruden starts to feel the heat.

Saints-Return practically everyone from an extremely young team that was much closer to 10-6 or 11-5 than pundits give them credit for. Every unit on this team should be improved, even CB. And we have a relatively easy schedule, if you base it on last years results.
Yet many predict this team to finish near the bottom? Its not logical in my opinion, unless we suffer catostrophic injuries again to certain positions (hint: #2, #22, and #26).

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Old 07-08-2004, 09:07 AM   #4
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Us vs. the rest of the Division

While I\'m not saying we\'re ahead right now, I will say that this year COULD and probably SHOULD be one in which we fair much better than normal in the division.

I mostly agree with Danno. Tampa Bay is a time on the brink of a major slide. There\'s no way Carolina will be nearly as good this year, but I do fear Atlanta - but a LOT of that has to do with our history with them.

Honestly, since almost all of our conference games come in the last 6 games of the year, there\'s no reason why the kinks shouldn\'t be worked out and why we shouldn\'t be clicking. Now, this is the Saints we\'re talking about, I know. And I\'m still not sure how to feel about finishing the season with five conference games in our last six, but...

Both of the Carolina games were close last year. If our offense is on track and our run D improved, I see no reason why we won\'t beat them.

We\'ve owned Tampa thus far, in fact the only game they\'ve taken from us was one we gave away. With their defense declining I just don\'t see it. Their offense should get better, but not that much this season. They\'er going to have problems at QB.

Atlanta, as always, makes me most nervous. They can always beat us no matter what. I say we split with them.

5-1 in the division ain\'t bad.

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Old 07-08-2004, 11:08 AM   #5
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Us vs. the rest of the Division

Hmmm....

I think right now all we can do is evaluate the teams \"on paper.\" I say that because all of the teams are going to look much different this year.

On paper, here\'s how I rank \'em.


NFC South Offenses
1. Saints -- Best group of wide receivers, by far. Best runningback. Best offensive line. Best QB.

2. Falcons -- It starts with Mike Vick. There\'s no doubt he\'s the most dynamic player in the NFL. He can and has won games on his own. They\'ve got a good set of talented wide receivers. They\'ve got a very good TE. They have a good combination of runningbacks with T.J. Duckett and Warrick Dunn and they\'ve upgraded their offensive line. And don\'t forget Alex Gibbs is the new O-line coach.

3. Panthers -- Great running game and great depth with De Shawn Foster. Jon Fox depends on the run and if one back happens to go down, he\'s got a great back up. Average passing game. Steve Smith had a career year and I don\'t see that happening agina. I don\'t think Jake is ever going to have a better year than 2003. He might, but I don\'t see it. Offensive line is suspect -- They\'ve lost a lot of size on the line. They won\'t be able to maul defensive lines like last year.

4. Bucs -- Upgraded offensive line. I think the running game will be better with Gardner and they have some other seviceable backs. Nothing to write home about. Their QB situation is tricky. Gruden wants to replace Johnson. If Brad Jonhson struggles eary he might start Chris Simms or even Gresie. Receiving corp is much better than last year, IMO.


NFC South Defenses

1. Panthers: Great front 4. Very good linebackers. Secondary is suspect.

2. Bucs: They still have a lot of players left over from their dominating defense. They\'ve added some good pickups in FA. They have a great defensive coordinator. I give them the edge on the other to teams.

3. Saints: Great defensive ends. The tackles have the potential to be very good and I think they will. Linebackers, I have no idea. Secondary is suspect.

4. Falcons: They\'ve got a good set of proven defensive tackles. Although, Ellis Johnson is causing his usual problems this time of year. They\'ve got some speedy linebackers. They\'ve got some serious speed in the secondary, but will have a rookie CB starting. On paper, I could have ranked this defense above the Saints.

So, here\'s what I got:

Saints:
Offense rank: 1
Defense rank: 3

Panthers
Offense rank: 3
Defense rank: 1

Falcons:
Offense rank: 2
Defense rank: 4

Bucs:
Offense Rank: 4
Denfense Rank: 2

Which all adds up to a wide open division, IMO.

Anyone else care to give it a try?? :P
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Old 07-08-2004, 02:04 PM   #6
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Us vs. the rest of the Division

Are we going to stop the run this season? The answer to that question determines how we stack up against the division.
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Old 07-09-2004, 12:26 PM   #7
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Us vs. the rest of the Division

The Bucs additions on offense don\'t scare me.
Garner is 32 and coming off an injury-bugged season.
Galloway \"still has big play potential\" - sounds like a mantra to me. He has been terriby inconsistent with Dallas last year and sometimes managed to catch zero passes as a starter.
I hear noone in Oakland or Charlotte complaining that Stinchcomb and Steussie were not re-signed.
And then there\'s Michael Clayton who doesn\'t scare me either.
Their defense will have to carry them again. It may work in a few games, but not enough to make them contenders.

Carolina - see Chicago Bears 2001. Enough said. Thanks, Danno.

Atlanta scares me. They simply can\'t be that bad on defense again and I do think they have found some players that will help in that regard.
Getting Vick back will help them to 3 extra wins - not because he is THAT good, but mostly their 2003 QBs were THAT bad. Kittner, hello?

Overall I don\'t think the NFC South will be as competitive as in recent years. Right now I see the Saints winning the division with a 10-6 record.

1. Saints
2. Falcons
3. Panthers
4. Bucs
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