Indirect Effect on the Green Bay Packers: New Orleans Saints @ Detroit Lions

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Oct 5, 2014; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints running back Khiry Robinson (29) celebrates his game winning touchdown with fullback Austin Johnson (35) and tackle Terron Armstead (72) following an overtime win in a game at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Saints defeated the Buccaneers 37-31 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

New Orleans Win

Record with a win: 3-3

Potential Impact Games Remaining: 9

What That Means For Green Bay: The Saints bring up a quandry in themselves. A win gets them to .500, gives them their first road victory of the season, and puts them on a two-game winning streak going into the matchup with Green Bay next week.

I feel obliged to mention I am a huge dissenter in the idea of momentum and how it is popularly used in terms of sports. The proper term refers to actual physical movement (example: somebody runs and then they try to stop abruptly, but the force of movement continues to carry them forward, causing them to fall), while the way a majority of fans/sportscasters use it refers to an abstract mental illusion. I believe it is erroneous to attribute something definitively physical by definition to what amounts to a feeling.

I say all of that because my mention of the potential New Orleans win streak would be called ‘momentum’ by many, but I believe it is much more accurate to consider them to be – for lack of a better term (something I’m working on figuring out) – in rhythm. Rhythm is something that – unlike momentum – can actually be broken in an instant. With how often the so-called momentum of every game seems to turn at least a dozen times before the end, it is an inaccurate way of describing what is transpiring on the field.

The Saints, if they regain some semblance of rhythm in a win over Detroit, could bring in a team ready to go on a roll, starting with that Green Bay game.

The other end of the quandry is that if New Orleans loses, all of a sudden they are a 2-4 team. For a team with Super Bowl expectations, that has them about as deep into a disappointing hole as can be before they get written off.

Teams like that reek of desperation to get back on the winning path, and a team fueled by desperation is going to pull out every stop and use every trick in their playbooks and tactics to turn things around.

Here’s a scenario we could easily see happen:

Week 7:
Carolina beats Green Bay
Detroit beats New Orleans

Week 8:
New Orleans beats Green Bay
Detroit beats Atlanta

After that, we would have New Orleans at 4-3 and Detroit at 6-2, with Green Bay sitting at 4-4 and lost/losing direct tiebreakers for a playoff spot with both teams.

That is not ideal to say the least, and could end up being the difference between another playoff trip and a watching from home for the first time since 2008.

In terms of their other games, pretty much all end up as impactful on their end; their propensity for lower-quality play on the road makes all of those games questionable, and four division games plus matchups against Baltimore/San Francisco/Cincinnati will all end up holding decent weight.