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Week Two NFL Preview: Bears at Saints

54 completions, 731 yards, and five touchdowns.  That’s the combined Week one total of the two gunslingers meeting at the Superdome on Sunday.  Undoubtedly, a showdown between two of the league’s top risk takers at the quarterback position.  It’s a battle in the Big Easy that will produce a team coming off of an impressive victory in front of their home crowd, and a team coming off of a heartbreaking defeat to the defending Super Bowl champs, looking to capture the first of many wins on the 2011 campaign in front of their raucous home fans.  A potential Playoff preview?

1. Superdome’s super effect – Simply put, the Saints defense is going to rally behind their home crowd.  Also, you have to believe they want to seek redemption from Week one’s disappointing performance, albeit against Rodgers’ Packers, surrendering five offensive touchdowns at Lambeau.  It’s still apparent Jay Cutler’s protection is a bit shaky, as seen by the four times he was sacked against Atlanta last Sunday.  With that said, expect Gregg Williams’ group to run blitz like crazy (make Forte fight for yards after contact) early and force the Bears to duplicate last week’s success via the screen game.  It’s not as much about the pressure on Cutler as it is the heat on Cutler’s playmakers – play physical with them and see if they can battle for yards.

2. Brees’ supporting cast – Even without Marques Colston, the Saints are not lacking weaponry for Drew Brees.  Darren Sproles, Robert Meachem, Devery Henderson, and Jimmy Graham all possess the ability to make 20+ yard plays.  I believe the Chicago defense will have a hard time with Graham and Sproles, yet, I think they can contain the New Orleans wide receivers.  If the Bears want to get off the field on third downs, they’ll need to account for Sproles, wherever he lines up, and Graham’s special matchup-problem inducing skill set.  You saw last week that the Bears held their own against Roddy White and Julio Jones, but, they know to be extra aware of the sneaky Sproles and graceful Graham.

3. Special Teams wins – I have a feeling this game will come down to whichever team makes the biggest special teams play late.  Both Devin Hester and Sproles are game-changers who have to be accounted for, especially on the fast Superdome surface.  With both teams so evenly matched, could it come down to a key punt return or wild field goal block?  It’s going to be a closely-contested fight, in which case, usually means the outcome will be decided by a special player in in the special teams department.  Fasten your seat belts, this dynamic duel is going to come down to the wire.

Prediction – Brees’ quick release, Ingram’s improved play, and a physical secondary will propel the Saints to their first triumph of the season.  I can’t see Sean Payton’s squad falling to 0-2 in the Superdome against a less than stellar pass defense.  Too many third-down conversions and aerial fireworks from an imaginative Brees-powered offense.  Saints 29 Bears 22



  1. bob

    September 16, 2011 at 12:50 am

    Bears are gonna be emotionally invested in this game because of Urlacher’s mother unfortunate early passing, D-fence expecially. He is dynamic player and team leader, expect the best out of everyone this week. Also, we are playing on turf which we have been bitching about at soldier field. We are a fast team, I understand our complaints, heres our opportunity to prove it. Saints D looked like dogshit last week. Nothing impressed me with Saints D. Bears D looked great with room for improvement. Bears D held G-bay to less than 50 pts total last season within 3 games. Saints gave up over 30 in one game. Saints lost Colston but have other weapons, problem is that other weapons are talented but not leaders. Devery Henderson and Jimmy Graham are great but not leaders. Sproles will be biggest threat with screen pass. Our D-line is gonna do big things. Olin Kruetz is gonna realize why he was cut this week. Btw i love kruetz but he is done and I saw multiple plays vs packers last week that showed it. I don’t see Brees having much time to throw, I dont see sproles running on us. I think Jimmy Graham getting plays but overall not overall extremely productive for saints, and Graham cant beat us alone even if he is my Fantasy TE, so guard meachem, sproles and henderson hardcore. Bears will have 2 turnovers, multiple sacks, and a productive Offense. Saints will have some broken plays but nothing special. Their offense will move the ball but not in a spectacular way, more desperate. I predict Bears win 24-14ish. Kicking game will be important for both squads. I also predict Nfl network and ESPN ready to super hype the Bears Packers game coming up next week. Both prob gonna be 2 and 0 so look for fireworks week 3.

  2. Teryl

    September 18, 2011 at 2:37 am

    Sorry Bob, game starts and ends with the QB. Cuttler sinks, Brees

    swims easily.

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