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Thursday, 05 January 2012 13:24
The King Speaks, Lions Getting Healthy For New Orleans Saints
Written by 
bush3Peter King, SI.com columnist and NBC TV sportscaster, predicts the Saints will defeat the Patriots 34-24 to win Super Bowl XLVI. 

He also lists facts about the Saints offense and defense. He lists highlights figures in the offense for 2011: 280 plays of 10 or more yards by Saints, most in the league.  The Saints converted a league-high 41.3 per cent of their third down and 10-plus situations. They led the NFL with a 6.9-yard average per play.

 The Saints defense allowed 230 plays of 10 or more yards , tied for fifth in league. Because their foes were so-often playing catchup. the Saints yielded 259.8 passing yards per game, third most in the NFL.

King also notes that over his last two years, with the Saints, Reggie Bush caught 81 passes. In his first year in New Orleans, Darren Sproles had 86 receptions and set an NFL record for all-purpose yards in a season.

The former Charger averaged about two more yards per catch than  Bush, who had a 1,000-yard rushing season with the Dolphins. 

Roman Harper said losing to the Rams in October was a "wake up call."  "We weren't prepared and didn't get up for the game," said Harper. The Saints lost to Seattle on opening weekend of the playoffs last season. "This year we're focused, determined and a totally different team," said Harper. The Saints host the Detroit Lions on Saturday night in the playoffs. "It helps us that we've played them before. Teams don't change that much," said Harper. "We did a good job of controlling them in the first game." Harper, an Alabama  alum, will be cheering for the Crimson Tide on Monday night in the BCS Championship game against home-town favorite, LSU.

 

"This city is buzzing with these football games and we want to keep that going," said Harper...

SOME HITHER, others yon: The first showdown of the BCS Championshio Game wasn't on the football field. It was on the Interstate. Just as LSU's busses were about to pass the airport exit, Alabama's convoy came into I-10, leaving the Tigers stuck in traffic...Peyton Manning: "I will not play for another team. My last down of football will be with the Colts."...

According to the Detroit Free Press, “The Detroit Lions had a full compliment of players for their final practice before Saturday's playoff game against the New Orleans Saints, their first in 12 years.

Receiver Calvin Johnson worked out with the first-team offense after sitting out the past two practices with a sore Achilles tendon. Johnson sat out most of practice last week but then had his best game of the season, catching 11 passes for 244 yards and a touchdown against the Green Bay Packers.

Safety Louis Delmas, who has missed five straight games with a knee injury, and cornerback Aaron Berry, who has missed the last three games with a shoulder injury, are both expected to return to the lineup Saturday, too.

by Ed Staton

Get your LSU and Saints Gear at Louisiana Sports Talk

 

Ed Staton

Ed Staton is a former sports writer for the Times Picayune and New Orleans States Item.  He also served as the New Orleans Saints Information Director.  He has won 43 media awards in writing, design and photography.  

 

Website: www.louisianasportstalk.com
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