A table tennis set, a small basketball hoop and a Nintendo 64 console that players used to pass time between meetings and workouts were gone Wednesday as the Saints began to prepare for their NFC wild-card matchup with the Carolina Panthers.
“It’s all gone,” said safety Vonn Bell. “That means preparation has got to kick up.”
“The coaches wanted a different level of focus, all the attention on what we got ahead of us,” Saints tackle Terron Armstead. “The playoffs is a heightened sense of urgency for everybody.
Call it an all-business trip — without ever leaving home.
On one hand, you can understand the Saints’ desire to make it clear that they are all-in on preparing for the game. Last year, Odell Beckham went on a boat before a playoff game and it was covered like the Lindbergh kidnapping.
But if you really think about it, New Orleans is employing half measures. Imagine how focused the team would be if you made them eat and sleep at the team facility. Imagine how many points they’d win by if they all had to turn in their phones and couldn’t watch television. Think of how hungry they’d be if walked around all week with physical binders strapped to their heads blocking out distractions.
We’d see the line move from around a touchdown to, like, 35 or 40.
As they say, anything worth doing is worth doing all the way.