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Joint Base Andrews Features

NEWS | Feb. 5, 2010

Super Bowl XLIV analysis

By Airman 1st Class Patrick McKenna 316th Wing Public Affairs

As we find ourselves less than 72 hours from kickoff, there are a few questions still unanswered. Namely, will Dwight Freeney be able to play effectively despite an ankle injury? How will the New Orleans Saints react to being on the biggest stage in franchise history? Can half the people watching the Super Bowl even name one song from The Who? The first two questions will be answered fairly early in the game. As for the third, you'll have to wait until the halftime show and see how many of your friends say, "Oh ... these are the guys who sing those songs from 'CSI?'"

On paper, this game has all the potential to be a classic. So how will it shake out? How do these teams, who both for a majority of the season flirted with perfection, match up against one another?

The majority of the pre-game analysis has understandably gone to the two quarterbacks and how the masses think they will fare. Make no mistake, while each quarterback is more than capable of carrying his respective team, this game will come down to a lot more than which signal caller has the better game.

While neither head coach has ever led a team to the Super Bowl, the Indianapolis Colts have one thing the Saints don't possess - Peyton Manning. The Colts familiarity with the Super Bowl stress will go a long way to offset their head coach Jim Caldwell's inexperience.

Defensively, the edge goes to the Saints for two reasons. The first being the Colts best defensive weapon, Dwight Freeney, is nursing an injured ankle. Even if he can suit up, he won't be 100 percent, which will give Drew Brees more precious time in the pocket. Secondly, while the Saints defense has gone against two high-powered offenses this post season (Arizona Cardinals and Minnesota Vikings), the Colts have yet to be tested (Baltimore Ravens and N.Y. Jets). The Saints are the best offense the Colts have faced all season and present a tough matchup for the Colts secondary.

This game should be highly entertaining and certainly won't be lacking storylines.

Prediction: Saints defeat Colts