The New Orleans No-Call that presumably cost the Saints a trip to last year’s Super Bowl was so egregious the NFL changed a rule.
But for the Black and Gold, there’s no rule change that can alleviate the pain of a straight-up loss.
Not to say Sunday’s overtime defeat at the hands of the Minnesota Vikings wasn’t heartbreaking, it was but the end just feels different.
This time, the Saints have no one to blame but the team in the mirror that lost the turnover battle, time of possession, and third down efficiency.
The only thing that feels slightly unfair is not having a 13-3 regular season rewarded with a first round bye but such is life.
Here’s Sean Payton at the end of season press conference, comparing his feelings this week to his feelings at this same time last year. “You hate to lose a game like that. You tip your hat to Minnesota and Mike is a close friend and obviously you want to play well and you want to win and advance. There’s certain things you look back on even during the year relative to your best positioning, but in that game you play over opportunities and it is difficult losing in the postseason, but last year was different.”
The common denominator between the Saints’ last two playoff losses: they are the only two home playoff losses during the Coach Payton era.