If you blast the volume on your hotel-room TV while showering, you can vaguely make out some of the manic chatter on the NFL pregame show of your choice. Among the nonsense I thought I heard this past Sunday morning in Dallas – and a sentiment that was repeated on various networks throughout the day – is that the Saints somehow have a license to go all-out for an undefeated regular season that the Colts lack.
You know, because the Saints mean so much to their community in the wake of Katrina … and because they've never had a real winner, while the Colts roll up big victory totals every year … and because Sean Payton's mentality is to go for broke (as opposed to Jim Caldwell's "Go ahead and break us" philosophy, apparently).
So let me get this straight: In order to excite the people of New Orleans, the Saints – who for more than a month have been greeted by thousands of fans at Louis Armstrong Airport upon returning from road games – must go undefeated? Conversely, if they win the Super Bowl with an 18-1 or 17-2 overall record, it will do nothing for the region's collective spirits, and no one in the Crescent City will party?
Yep, that makes a ton of sense, even with shampoo suds in your ears.
I'll have more to say about the whole undefeated thing in a future column, but for now, I look forward to hearing from all of you about the Saints and Colts and their respective regular-season closing strategies.
Beginning Tuesday at high noon Pacific time, and continuing for a generous hour, we'll trip in real time about this and whatever else is on your mind, including fascinating topics like the Cowboys' December slide; whether going 16-0 has lost some of its luster since the '07 Patriots did the trick; Mike Vrabel's grumpiness; Randy Moss'(notes) inner dog; and, of course, why I slighted your favorite team in my picks or in the latest 32 Questions.
Make sure to join in on the fun – and to shower first.