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More Than One Way to Skin a Cat

(Photo Credit: Icon Sports Media)

Don’t get spooked by the black cat this October.  While notoriously associated with bad luck, the Saints don’t appear to be flinching as they travel to Carolina this weekend to take on the Panthers.

Folklore regarding black cats varies from culture to culture.  In western history, black cats symbolized evil, misfortune and death.   The deeply suspicious and frightful pilgrims associated these bad omens with witchcraft and the supernatural and even went so far as to punish or kill anyone with a black cat.  Maybe they were in search of feline freedom in addition to religious freedom….maybe those uncomfortable, not to mention hideous, shoes only exacerbated their superstitious nature. 

Some groups and cultures have taken a less pessimistic, and even optimistic view.  Black cats represent good luck in Great Britain, Ireland and Japan.  They represent prosperity in Scotland.  Fisherman wives kept black cats to protect their sea-faring husbands, and women owning black cats were thought to attract many suitors.

So which is it…good or bad?

The truth is, there will likely be a mixture of good and bad play this weekend.  Neither team is lighting up the defensive charts.  Looking at total offense and total defense, the Saints and Panthers are somewhat evenly matched.  However, a closer look reveals to key differences between the teams:

  • The Saints outscore the Panthers 33 to 22 so far this season
  • The Saints covert on 3rd down 53% of this versus 33% for the Panthers

Cam Newton has been impressive so far this season.  But he has one thing that can work against him…he is a rookie.  Don’t get me wrong, he is playing good football and has a lot of potential.  However, he will be going up against a veteran, and Superbowl-winning MVP that exemplifies grace under pressure.  The man that no one counts out when the Saints are down and there is still time on the clock.  The third down conversion rate says it all – when it matters, Drew Brees and the Saints deliver….they don’t get spooked. I expect the running game to be sharp and for Drew Brees to spread the ball as usual.  After all, he knows there is more than one way to skin a cat.

The spread is the Saints by 6.5 this Sunday.  I am more of a “the glass is half full” kind of girl, so I am thinking the black cat will bring us good luck….Saints by 14.

…an’ dat’s dat!