If it's a home away from home, it's a long way from home. But the Saints, in going 2 and 0 there, have been on the winning side of the highest-scoring game in the London series, the lowest-scoring game in the London series, and the only shutout in the London series.
Clearly, Sean Payton and his incredibly hard-working staff are onto something. And if "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery," other coaches would be wise to imitate, emulate and even impersonate Payton. Ravens coach John Harbaugh would have been wise to.
Last week, the Ravens were in London to meet Jacksonville. Baltimore's first game outside the United States in team history. The year before, the Colts had requested of the NFL not to give them their bye following what would be a week 4 loss to Jacksonville in London. They got their wish and a win over Chicago at home in week 5.
The Ravens liked the idea and the result. They requested something similar this season. They felt a week 4 bye after London was too early, and got their wish.
Like the Dolphins this past week, they chose to fly to London Thursday night. After getting embarrassed on Sunday a week ago by Jacksonville, 44-7, with the Jaguars winning their third straight game there, Baltimore came home to host the Steelers. They were dreadful in the first half of a 26-9 loss yesterday.
Next week it's on to Oakland, making for about 13,000 air miles in three weeks. After a 2 and 0 start, the Ravens are 2 and 2. Joe Flacco has thrown interceptions in 10 straight games. He - and they - have looked sluggish and jet-lagged.
While Sean Payton has learned to handle the inevitable frustrations of such a trip, Harbaugh after his first said, "I don't plan on going over there anytime soon to play again. Somebody else can have that job."
Maybe somebody else will because their job used to be his before London.
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