Why The 49ers WILL Defeat The Saints

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Saturday January 14th the 49ers will host the Saints in their most important game since 2002.  The Saints bring a high powered offense to town, led by record setting quarterback Drew Brees.  The Niners sport the leagues best defense.   Can Patrick Willis, Justin Smith and the 49ers dominate D contain Brees and Saints high powered offense?

YES THEY WILL!  How and Why after the jump

How the 49ers will win: The 49ers have been preparing for the Saints ever since their week 17 win against the Rams.  Throw out the exhibition opener, this time, Harbaugh’s bunch is ready.  On offense look for the 49ers to employ a run heavy, quick pass offense to combat the Saints blitz heavy defense.  I expect the 49ers to run right at the blitz and expose it putting the Saints on their heels.  The Saints typically start slow in the first quarter.  The 49ers need to keep the Saints offense off the field by controlling the time of possession.  Look for the 49ers to be extremely patient in the first half.  The dink and dump game, protecting Alex Smith and the football will open up some shots down field in the second half.

Defensively look for the 49ers to do what they have done all season long.  Vic Fangio rarely rushes more than 4, relying on the defensive line to pressure the QB allowing the linebackers to make plays with their athleticism and help out the defensive backfield in coverage.  One adjustment I anticipate is seeing Aldon Smith in the game more than Parys Haralson.  The Saints are a pass happy team and Smith typically plays on passing downs.   New Orleans biggest weakness is their offensive line.  Justin Smith should have no problem taking up 2 blockers all day long, allowing Aldon or ILBs Willis or Navarro Bowman to create pressure up the gap.

Difference in the game: As it almost always does in the playoffs, turnovers will be huge Saturday, and I expect that to be the difference.  Expect this to be a tight game until the 49ers come up with a big takeaway in the second half, stretching its lead to 2 scores.

Bold Predictions: Frank Gore will rush for over 125 yards and at least 1 score.  Aldon Smith will record at least 3 sacks and will cause the game changing turnover.

FINAL SCORE: 49ers 27 Saints 20

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Tags: 49ers 49ERS HOME PLAYOFFS 49ers Vs Saints Aldon Smith Alex Smith CANDLESTICK PARK DREW BREES Frank Gore Jim Harbaugh Justin Smith Navarro Bowman NFL Playoffs Niner Noise Ninernoise.com Parys Haralson Patrick Willis Saints Why The 49ers WILL Defeat The Saints

  • bearbeat99

    Hmm. I like your 49′ers offensive analysis, though the overall consensus had already reached this conclusion by this past Sunday morning. Keeping the Saints offense off the field is key. Then again, what team would want to keep any offense on the field. (Just sayin’.)

    The quip about the Saints OL being the weak link, though, is somewhat of a head scratcher. The 2011 Saints OL are–>

    1. fielding three 2011 Pro Bowlers- Nicks, Evans, and Bushrod [alternate]- {#1};

    2. one of the best in terms of allowing sacks {#2};

    3. one of the better NFL teams {#6} in rushing yards (need a good OL to achieve this);

    4. one of the best screen offenses in the league (quick footed linemen being the key).

    The OL statistics and past game film bear this out. (Yes, I admit, the Rams game was their lone Achilles Heel in this summation.) So, to write that the OL is the weak link in our offense is, well, absurd.

  • http://ninernoise.com/ matt hamm


    The Saints line is weak up the middle I don’t care what your stats tell you. Stats are nice, I watch the games also. The 49ers will get pressure and win the battle up front. The running game in NO is about 2 things: teams fear of the passing game and the Saints crushing teams and running at the end of games.

    My last point, great QBs make great OLs sometimes. How’s that line look up in Indy? They were “awesome” when Manning was under center though.

  • bearbeat99

    @matt hamm

    Wha…? “The Saints line is weak up the middle…”. The Saints line cannot be weak up the middle if it is cemented by the aforementioned two interior guards, Nicks and Evans, and producing the way they have. Good Lord, man, football gurus up and down this awesome and curious nation will attest to those guards being majorly awesome. Heck, even the center is pretty good.

    With regard the Saints or anything related to sports- stats do bear out when running up the middle, off the tackles, and outside. You may not care about stats, but in every sport I know of they are a primary metric that owners, coaches, scouts, players, and even overly zealous fans utilize to assess performance and plan opposing strategies. For example: how do we know the 49ers defense is all that and more? Umm, stats.

    On the 2 things: if we use the logic that opposing teams would fear the pass with the offense being able to run at the end of the game, then teams such as GB, Detroit, and New England would all have solid and exceptional running games. (…crickets.) So this presumption that {sometimes} great QBs make great OLs is simply not true. (Note: the Indy run game has been and is mediocre, at best, even when Manning was under center.) So no, I do not agree- a run game is built upon much more than the fear of uttering “Manning”, “Rodgers”, “Brady”, or “Yates?”. It is an OL effort to create lanes, disrupt the second tier, and then have talented backs do the rest… of which the Saints have both.

    Anywho, I look forward to watching this game. Funny, though. No one has been writing about the other side, i.e., 49ers offense vs. Saints defense. They must be feeling pretty dissed by now. :)

  • http://ninernoise.com/ matt hamm


    I’m sorry you took that much effort to reply here bro. Anyhow, the Center is not very good. Justin Smith will take up 2 blockers all day long on your “great” line I promise you. Aldon,Justin and Brooks will surely see Mr. Brees in the backfield often on Saturday.

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