Final Saints ThoughtsDecember 19, 2009
Indestructible. Unbeatable. Relentless. It just keeps coming at you, and won’t stop until you are vanquished. Its goal can’t be reached with you around. Every time you think you’ve stopped it, it gets back up and keeps going. Its goal is domination. Until you squash it with a hydraulic press. See, thought I was talking about the Saints, didn’t you? The pronouns should have led you to see it was an allegory.
Now, en route to 13-0, they’ve seemed a lot like the T-800, and it seems like most have bought into the theory that it can’t be stopped. But who’s to say that the Cowboys can’t play the role of Kyle Reese?
It’s not going to be easy, and may not work out, but the Cowboys have a chance to lure them under the proverbial hydraulic press? Other than the media, pundits, analysts, 98% of fans and most other people, that is.
The Saints team that beat New England won’t be beaten by the Cowboys, or any other team for that matter. That team hasn’t shown up for every game though, and assuming they will on Saturday night is quite dogmatic.
Roy Williams’ tongue-in-cheek remark about crowning the Saints was right. Most are assuming they are just killing time until a return trip to Miami with rings on the line.
“As for me, all I know is that I know nothing,” Socrates said. If there’s anything that we should know as football fans, it’s that we have no idea what will transpire. Consider: Last year, the two lowest-seeded teams in the NFC played for the right to advance to the Super Bowl. The winning team of that game now has seven losses. Ryan Leaf was the 2nd overall pick in the draft. The ‘07 Cowboys.
Analysis and prognostication is all idle chatter in a world where we have no absolute knowledge as to our existence for another breath.
“The only constant is change,” was a central belief of the philosopher Heraclitus.
Last year, I said in the pre-season that the Patriots would find themselves out of the playoffs coming off an 18-1 season. My reasoning was that the team that loses the Super Bowl always fails to return to the tournament. I take credit for the prediction, because I ended up right. “You didn’t know that Tom Brady would be injured, you don’t get credit for that,” is something I heard repeatedly as I repeated myself through the season on my radio show.
I’m not going to sit here and tell you that the game is over, that the Cowboys will win, that my prediction is any more valid than anyone else. We simply don’t know.
And that’s why sports are fun. We watch, because there’s no way that you can be positive about something. The Greeks give us hope. Millennia later, we still acknowledge a lack of knowledge and that things change.
Let that give you hope. The Cowboys won’t always lose in December. The Saints won’t win eternally. Things will change, and they can change tonight when no one expects it.
Except me, Roy E. and hopefully 52 of his teammates. They just need to find the hydraulic press somewhere.
Some quick thoughts:
* Demarcus Ware is a game-time decision. I’m thrilled by the fact that he’s progressed well enough to get that far. We were worried about you big guy. And will be for every play you step on the field for the rest of your career. We should do the same for everyone.
* The Saints won their first five games by an average of 19.8 points. The next month was much closer, with the margin of victory at 8.8. That coincided with them giving the ball away 13 times.
As I noted earlier this week, the Cowboys have dropped the last 2 games while winning the turnover battle. Sure would help the Cowboys to see a +2 or +3 in the box score.
* It’s hard to map out a blueprint for beating the Saints. But I doubt Beyond Jerrydome was built without revisions along the way. The goals are there, thought: Turnovers, special teams, pass rush, don’t waste opportunities.
* Bill Parcels last incarnation of the Cowboys took out a team who many thought would run the table. They did it with a similar blue print to the Giants win over the Bills in the Super Bowl that Parcels oversaw. Keep it on the ground, keep the clock running, maximize your opportunities, and create good field position.
Let’s hope that Wade and crew find a formula that works.
Sorry that I’m a little short of analysis and don’t have any little nuggets to watch for. I just know that I’m around 800 words, now, and trying to look at the little ways to beat the Saints would just bore you, since they can’t beat the Saints you know.
Prediction: Dallas 38, New Orleans 35.