Bradley Handwerger / WWLTV.com Sports Reporter
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NEW ORLEANS ― Carl Nicks sat at his locker in the Saints’ Superdome locker room Sunday, not long after New Orleans put a 45-17 licking on Carolina, pondering the thought of being a part of such a record-breaking offense.
Is it a special feeling?
Absolutely, he said.
Do the records mean anything without a Super Bowl win?
Absolutely not, he said.
It’s beginning to feel like Nicks doesn’t have much to worry about.
The banners hanging on the wall high above the Poydras Street end zone of the Superdome each signify one part of the Saints’ success since Sean Payton took over control the city’s NFL team.
There’s one for the 2006 NFC South title, one for the 2009 NFC South title, one for the 2009 NFC title and one for the Super Bowl win.
They may get some company soon and those records that Nicks feels special about now might feel even more special in a month.
I don’t care who it is that they’ve played and how “bad” those teams may be – the Saints are playing at a crazy ridiculous level right now.
In fact, they’re playing at video game levels, having scored at least 40 points in four of the past six games.
Green Bay is the only other team in the NFL playing with an offense that so overmatches opponents, their head coaches are putting out positive spin for them.
The Saints have scored 547 points this season and are steamrolling opponents at the time of season that counts.
Don’t believe me?
Maybe Carolina coach Ron Rivera will persuade you.
“When you put the tape on and watch how they played against Atlanta and watch how they played against us, the first thing that you say to yourself is, ‘I hope that we don’t have to play them,’ ”Rivera said after Sunday’s destruction. “That’s what’s going to happen. Whoever is playing them is playing a very good football on a hot roll right now.”
Saints right tackle Zach Strief admits that the Packers, the reigning Super Bowl champions, are the favorites.
But few teams would turn down the position New Orleans is in these days.
The players have tunnel vision now, knowing their ultimate goal is right ahead of them.
The Saints jumped into 2012 by turning back the clock, using the formula from 2009 – score tons of points, forcing teams to be one-dimensional - to become one of the postseason favorites.
“Not only is it a comparison, it’s a good story line,” Saints cornerback Jabari Greer said. “I wouldn’t expect anything else. But we realize that we have a lot of unfinished business from last year. It was a sour feeling going home early. This is a new season, a new opportunity and we’re going to take full advantage of it.”
And if the Saints take full advantage, they’ll make the records mean something.
Isn’t that right, Carl?
“Absolutely,” Nicks said. “They’re good and fun and great, dandy. But unless you win, they don’t mean nothing. Period.”