Week 4 Preview: San Francisco at New Orleans

A miss that cost the Saints the game

Who would have thought that after three weeks the San Francisco 49’ers would have a better record than the New Orleans Saints?  That is the case as the two teams do battle Sunday at the SuperDome in New Orleans.  The Niners come in at 2-1, winners of two in a row after losing in the opener vs the Cardinals.  The Saints have lost two straight on the road after an opening day win over the Bucs at home.

New Orleans came all the way back from 18 down in Denver Sunday, but were the victims of a bad no-call late, and then Martin Gramatica missed a potential go-ahead 43-yard field goal with 1:55 remaining that would have put the team ahead.  The Broncos jumped on the Saints, and the team was able to fight back only to lose in the end, and it will be interesting to see if they can rally from that defeat.

San Fran enters the contest with a ton of confidence, more so on the offensive side of the ball.  The last two weeks, both wins, the team put up 365 yards and 33 points and 370 points and 31 points in Sunday’s win over the Lions.  The key seems to be the play-calling of coordinator Mike Martz, along with the play of QB J.T. O’Sullivan, who has been making good decisions and not turning the ball over.

Frank Gore has also found his stride, as he had 130 yards on 27 carries in the win over the Lions.  He and Reggie Bush both create mismatches for the defense, and they both should have big days in this one.  The Saints will need to find success passing the ball without Marques Colston and Jeremy Shockey, who will both be out with injuries.  Drew Brees was able to spread the ball around Sunday without them, and will have to do the same this week against a pretty good Niners secondary.

It shapes up to be a high scoring game with lead changes all over the place.  The Niners have that swagger of a team looking like they can play with the best of them, while the Saints with two straight losses have to get it back.  Look for New Orleans to fight and scratch their way to a tough three-point win over a San Fran team that is getting better each week.

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