NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - I shouldn't go here. I know better. It's so easy to overreact after an emotional victory.
Thus, I'm not going to say that the Saints are back. What I am saying is Sunday's win was the type of victory that can give you a reason to believe in this team again.
How could you not?
"Man, (I've) never been a part of something like that," Drew Brees said after the game.
We're right there with you, Drew. In fact, I still can't believe what I just witnessed.
It had everything. There were 101 combined points, 1030 combined yards, 14 combined touchdowns, 68 combined first downs, a holding call that negated an Eli Manning sack/fumble, 21 unanswered points from New York and a facemask penalty after a fumble on a punt return that pushed the Saints just inside field goal range. When the referee correctly placed the ball on the 32-yard line after initially waving the flag off, you just knew Kai Forbath would knock it down from 50.
In fact, it was exactly the type of win, a team that's destined for big things in a season, usually gets.
And that's where the feel-good stops for me. Even with their third straight win, I still can't get completely on board. Not yet. They're only 4-4 and still well behind in the NFC playoff standings. Plus, we've seen this movie before. They've started a season slow in the past, fought back to respectability then ran out of gas for the stretch run.
They're at that respectable midway point now. The key is what comes next. On the surface, it looks promising: another home game against the lowly 1-6 Tennessee Titans. The Saints found themselves in a similar scenario in 2007, when they battled back to 4-4 then faced the winless St. Louis Rams in New Orleans. They lost that game, 37-29 and never had a better opportunity to get over the hump again.
It's a scenario Sean Payton undoubtedly remembers and will find a way to use it throughout the week. After all, now is not the time for his team to celebrate how far they've come back. Now is the time to believe they can do even better.