Every other tool on this hemisphere has made a Super Bowl pick, thus, so shall we.
Dave Selvig: Obviously, the Vikings should be in this game and they would have defeated the Colts. Their pass rush would have been too much for Indy’s average offensive line (ala the New York Jets) and with Dwight Freeney likely out, No. 4 would have picked Indy’s underrated, but far from dominant defense, apart. Unfortunately, that match-up was volunteered away by the Purple, leaving us with the Saints instead. I’d prefer New Orleans win, based on the number of key Big 10 players integral to their success. But the Saints defense just isn’t good enough. The Colts are not a great team, not a team that should be winning a Super Bowl. But they’ll score too many points for Brees and Co. to keep up.
The Pick: Colts 34, Saints 24
Michael Savaloja: Everyone in this entire frozen nation thinks this game is going to be some sort of offensive marvel. What I think? Not so much — even though 52 combined points is quite a lot. Briefly, let’s start with the Colts. Indianapolis has struggled mightily at times this season, and if not for Peyton “God” Manning the Colts miss the playoffs this year and finish at .500. How many times were they behind this year and Peyton had to muscle up some late drive to put the Colts out front just in the nick of time? The team’s defense can be a let down at times and — without a good game from Manning — the offense is not spectacular.
The Saints? Good, but really overrated. Let’s be honest. The Vikings gave the NFC championship game away. Literally. If Favre and Peterson don’t botch that handoff inside the 5 before the end of the first half, or if Berrian doesn’t also drop the soap on the 5 after the break, that game is totally Vikings. Excluding all the other ridiculous botches in that wretched game. All right, the too many men in the huddle call was huge, but I’m not one for that. Just like all you Favre haters jumped on No. 4’s back after throwing that pick — right after that penalty, I might add. But anyway, I’m not a guy who blames the guy who makes the last ugly play for losing an ugly game. The Vikings had plenty of opportunities and if they could have held on to the football they’d have won by three touchdowns.
I’m not getting into Peterson’s game. Okay, I will. 100-plus yards and three touchdowns in the worst — I’ll say it again — the worst game of his professional career.
Long story short the Saints shouldn’t be there and I believe the pressure of the team’s first Super Bowl, the “Who Dat” frenzy and not letting the Katrina victims down will take a toll on this team come Sunday. Like I mentioned earlier, there’ll be some scoring but it’s not going to be 48-42, or some crazy 95 combined points. I believe the Colts will get behind by 10 at some point (24-14) and Peyton will lead the charge back to win by 4, just like he’s done the majority of the season.
The Pick: Colts 28, Saints 24
Remember to check back tomorrow at 3 p.m. for my live blog on Danica Patrick’s NASCAR debut in the ARCA Lucas Oil Slick Mist 200 at Daytona International Speedway.
David Griswold: I would love to see a game end in similar fashion as XXXIV when the St. Louis Rams escaped with a 23-16 win on a final play now famously known as “The Tackle,” but unfortunately I didn’t see enough out of the Saints to think they can compete with a team like the Colts. Peyton Manning will win his second Super Bowl MVP after throwing for three touchdowns and 378 yards but it will the defense that wins the game. The Colts will continually pressure Drew Brees and throw him out of whack the entire night.
I can only hope the halftime show has a little more electricity than the Saints in this one.
The Pick: Colts 40, Saints 17
Ben Rodgers: Who Dat nation will prevail because the lack of Dwight Freeney (who will sit out or be greatly hampered) will allow Drew Brees enough time to find Reggie Bush in the flat or allow Pierre Thomas to slam the ball up the middle. Also the lack of Joe Buck and Troy Aikman will create a wealth of football knowledge that should work in favor of the more experienced coach Sean Payton.
The Pick: Saints 35, Colts 31