49ers vs. Saints Preview

January 10, 2012 | Michael Schwartz

The Saints are on a tear of late and seem unbeatable. They have one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL, Drew Brees. He broke Marino’s record for most yards in regular season history. He threw for over 5400 yards this year. He spread the ball around to a lot of receivers and running backs. The Saints defense is not very good; they are not getting takeaways like they were two years ago in their Super Bowl run.

The 49ers have played great this year. They have one of the best defenses in the NFL, especially against the run game. Linebackers Navarro Bowman and Patrick Willis are one of the best combos in the NFL. They led the league in rushing yards allowed and were still very good against the pass. Jim Harbaugh turned the team around and he started by making Alex Smith a good starting quarterback. Smith has weapons in Michael Crabtree, Vernon Davis, Frank Gore, among others. They run the ball well and that lets them control the clock. They don’t score much but they don’t let the other team score a lot either.

The 49ers have to get to Drew Brees if they want to win this game. I think their defense will stop Sproles and Thomas in the running game. However, they have to focus on Sproles coming out of the back field. Alfonso Smith is having a great year and he needs to continue this by getting to Brees in this match up. I think that the 49ers have a good chance to win this game. They are an old fashioned run team with a great defense. This gives them an advantage because defense wins championships.

Alex Smith needs to have a good game in order to beat the Saints. He can’t give throw interceptions which will give the Saints short fields. He has weapons that will be able to get open against the Saints secondary. Frank Gore will have to run the ball well because they need to control the ball to keep Brees off of the field. The 49ers will be able to do this and that is why I think they will win.

Prediction: 23-21 49ers