No one can wait for the September 8th season opener to the New Orleans saints. It’ll be a spectacular opening day after a long offseason full of interesting management moves. Not only would it finally be the first football game in months, but it will be against the saints. (I refuse to follow proper grammatical procedures when spelling out the saints’ name because in no way do I believe that that noun is proper.)
Since 1966, the Falcons have opened up the season against the saints five separate times. Every single time the falcons have won. Most of the time, the Falcons have won dominantly.
The biggest game of those five games was in 1973. The Atlanta Falcons beat the saints 62-7. That game was the biggest margin of victory in the history of the series.
Of course I don’t want to predict the Falcons to win 60-0, although it would be nice. I don’t think the falcons will lose regardless of where the game takes place. The answer is to a saints team trending the opposite direction the Falcons are. Every year Matt Ryan is getting better. Drew Brees is NOT by any means getting worse, but he certainly isn’t getting better. He already hit his peek and whether or not he is declining from his peek, we have already seen the best of Drew Brees. Their offense is always explosive. Their defense, on the other hand, is troubling. They were historically bad last season allowing tons of yards and points. I have no doubt that the addition to Rob Ryan and the switch to a 3-4 defense will help them in the long run, this season is not the season.
They could not have picked a worse time to make a scheme change. When a team moves from the 4-3 to the 3-4, they either have bigger, slower defensive ends play outside linebacker, or faster, weaker linebackers take on the position. Their pass rush will barely be visible. They lacked corners and went after a safety in the draft. I actually think that the saints defense may be worse than last year. If it’s better, it won’t be by much. As good as the saints offense may be, their defense won’t be able to slow down the falcons new and improved passing and rushing attack.