The Morning Call (Sunday)

Preparing for a team with ‘nothing to lose’

Saints know they’re favored vs. Bears, but they don’t care

- By Brett Martel

NEW ORLEANS — Saints linebacker De mario Davis’ largely productive NFL career also has had its share of disappoint­ing, teachable moments.

Losing seasons with the Jets and Browns helped Davis cherish recent postseason opportunit­ies with the Saints. And in the playoffs, Davis has experience­d excruciati­ng losses in each of the past three seasons — with the decisive score coming on each game’s final play.

So as the four-time NFC South champion Saints (12-4) embark on yet another playoff run, starting Sunday against the recently resurgent Bears(8-8) inthe Superdome, Davis is imploring teammates to narrow their focus and stay in the present.

“The only thing that we’re promised is this moment. That is the only clock that you could be looking at,” Davis said. “It isn’t like, as a team, you’ ve got so many opportunit­ies to be here. The only moment we have is right now and it’ s all about what we do with it right now .”

For the Saints, the stakes are high because their quarterbac­k is 41-year-old Drew Brees, who has become synonymous with New Orleans during the past 15 seasons. Brees brought the football-obsessed community it’s lone major pro sports championsh­ip 11 seasons ago, and became the NFL’s all-time leader in yards passing. Brees will turn 42 on Jan. 15 and hasn’t committed to playing beyond this season, so each game could be his last.

Asked if he’d decided whether this season would be his last, Brees said only: “I’ve made a decision about being the best I can be this week so we can go win this game so we can keep playing.”

Brees is in his ninth postseason with the Saints and 11th in his career.

Bears quarterbac­k Mitch Trubisky, now in his fourth NFL season, is in the playoffs for just the second time after what was a turbulent 2020 for him.

 ?? JOHN BAZEMORE/AP ?? Saints outside linebacker Demario Davis leaves the field after a game against the Falcons on Dec. 6 in Atlanta.
JOHN BAZEMORE/AP Saints outside linebacker Demario Davis leaves the field after a game against the Falcons on Dec. 6 in Atlanta.

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