Saints vs DirtyBirds

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    Saints vs DirtyBirds -- Will 13th win BE THE LUCKY NUMBER ??

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    bayoubabe

    Posts : 22
    Join date : 2009-12-06
    Location : New Orleans

    Saints vs DirtyBirds

    Post by bayoubabe on Sat Dec 12, 2009 4:17 pm

    ATLANTA (AP) - The New Orleans Saints are chasing perfection.

    The Atlanta Falcons are just trying to survive.
    While the Saints (12-0) have already clinched the NFC South title and merely need a win or tie Sunday at the Georgia Dome to ensure they'll have a first-round bye and at least one playoff game in the Big Easy, the Falcons' hopes of making it back to the playoffs are looking bleaker by the week.

    Atlanta (6-6) has lost five of its last seven and shows no signs of pulling out of the tailspin, not with a rash of injuries that have hit especially hard on the offensive side.

    Last week, the Falcons were without five starters - nearly half the offense - when they faced the Philadelphia Eagles in a crucial NFC game. Not surprisingly, they were blown out at home, 34-7.

    "We can't afford another loss," receiver Roddy White said. "We've got to find a way to win this game."

    The Saints have found a way to win every game so far, making them just the eighth team in NFL history to start the season 12-0. Another win will set a franchise record and lock up that bye, but New Orleans has bigger goals in mind.

    Like beating out Minnesota (10-2) for top seed in the NFC, which would ensure the Saints of nothing but home games throughout the conference playoffs. That would put them in the best possible position to reach the Super Bowl for the first time in franchise history, the perfect antidote for a city still struggling to bounce back from Hurricane Katrina.

    "It was exciting before, but now it's really exciting, because each week now holds another prize at the end of it," quarterback Drew Brees said. "You win this week, you secure a first-round bye. Maybe the next week or the week after you secure potentially the one seed and then potentially the week after that you have an opportunity to make history (at 16-0) and you're in the playoffs, so it gets more and more exciting each and every week."

    The Falcons would love to end New Orleans' quest for an unbeaten season, but it's hard to see them doing it without Matt Ryan or Michael Turner.

    "That's like 65 percent of our offense," White said.

    Actually, he's a little off. Those two have been in on more than 80 percent of the total yards.

    Ryan, the second-year quarterback, missed last week with a turf toe injury and seemed highly unlikely to play against the Saints. Turner, the NFL's season-leading rusher in 2008, has been struggling with a high ankle sprain for nearly a month and the injury flared up again when he came back two weeks ago.

    Against the Eagles, the Falcons were missing those two, as well as receiver Michael Jenkins and starting linemen Harvey Dahl and Sam Baker. At least some of the wounded are likely to return Sunday, but now cornerback Chris Houston is down with a hamstring injury, weakening an already suspect secondary.

    "The next guy has to step in and keep it rolling," linebacker Mike Peterson said, trying to put a positive

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