Advocate Staff photo by CHRIS GRANGER
By Scott Rabalais | The Advocate
Teddy Roosevelt, the president who once threatened to abolish football because it was getting too violent, first coined the now well-worn phrase, “Nothing in the world is worth having … unless it means effort, pain and difficulty.”
The New Orleans Saints lived that idiom to the hilt Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles. It was a day filled with effort, pain, difficulty and big plays erased by little yellow flags. But ultimately, the biggest thing in the Saints’ world wound up in their slightly sweaty palms:
A 20-14 victory in the divisional round of the NFL playoffs over the reigning Super Bowl champions, and the right to host the NFC championship game next Sunday for just the second time in franchise history.
Was it worth it, Saints fans? I’ll ask you after you stop hyperventilating. But I think we know the answer.
This was nothing like the regular-season meeting between these two teams on Nov. 18, when the Saints demolished the Eagles like a condemned building 48-7. You knew it would not be. Looking back it was that game that represented the height of the Saints’ form this season. And Philly to its credit rebounded to win five of its last six games plus a nip-and-tuck wild-card round playoff game last week at Chicago. ...
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