Start fast. Get a big lead. Get the crowd in a frenzy. Suck the life out of the opponent. Run away with the convincing win.
That's the usual Saints' script for success on Monday night football. It's one that 's worked on their last nine consecutive times.
But on this Monday, their primetime script was officially flipped.
"We are used to being on the other side of games like this," said quarterback Drew Brees after the game.
He's exactly right. On Monday Brees and company got to see how the other half lives. In their 27-point defeat, the Seahawks handed the Saints a dose of their own Monday night medicine.
In Seattle, it was the Seahawks that was the more confident team. It was the Seahawks that were more physical. It was the Seahawks that had their home crowd in an uproar. It was the Seahawks that had the best player on the field.
The Saints looked lost, unprepared and even intimidated at times. At no point did it ever feel like the Saints would win this game. It began on the game's first play when they looked out of sync and never got any better.
The good news is that despite how ugly Monday's 34-7 loss was, it only counts as one. And fortunately for them they only have three on the season.
Most games require the 24-hour rule to digest and make corrections. After this one, I'd say it's more like a 24-minute or even a 24-second rule. There's no sense beating themselves over this one. They know they are much better than what they showed.
Now it's over and time to make swift corrections and move on as quickly as possible. Quite frankly, they have to. Right now they are 9-3 and have two games in three weeks with the team that shares the same record in their division.
The Saints will get their first shot at the Panthers Sunday night inside the Mercedes Benz Superdome in another primetime matchup.