A highly anticipated 2018 season gets a dress rehearsal in Jacksonville tonight

A highly anticipated 2018 season gets a dress rehearsal in Jacksonville tonight

(WVUE) - If viewing on mobile, click here.

Optimism for the 2018 season has been sky-high on Airline Drive since last season ended bitterly in Minnesota.

All the key ingredients in the Black and Gold are back for a possible Super Bowl run. Some prognosticators are already crowning the Saints NFC favorite.

It's only August, so let's pump the brakes a little. But, the pieces are no doubt there. Here's some key players that could help the Saints for a postseason run.

2018 third-round pick, Tre'Quan Smith, has been electric in the Black and Gold. He's got speed to burn, and can make all the big catches. Another weapon for Drew Brees, not what the NFC South wanted to see.

Free-agent signing Demario Davis is exhibiting on a daily basis why the Saints struck big with this linebacker. Davis can play sideline-to-sideline, and not get beat by speedy running backs. Plus, he can lay the wood on ball carriers breaking through the line.

If a player does get by the front seven, they'll have to deal with Marcus Williams. The safety put last years "Minnesota Miracle" in the rearview mirror, and has been a terror for the guys on the other side of the line.

Mark Ingram will miss the first four games of the regular season for using a banned substance. No worries Saints fans, Alvin Kamara can handle the extra load. Kamara is dangerous by ground and air.

If you want to be a Super Bowl contender you need a quarterback. Well, the Saints are good in that department. Brees is 39, but shows zero signs of slowing down. He's the straw that stirs the Saints drink.

You can hear more from hall-of-famer Pat Swilling and the FOX 8 sports team for the pregame show at 5:30 p.m..

At 6 p.m. you can watch The Saints take on Jacksonville right here on FOX 8. We'll be with you all night with a halftime and post game show.

Copyright 2018 WVUE. All rights reserved.