The #new orleans Saints just completed an epic comeback against the Washington Redskins at the Superdome. Trailing Kirk Cousins and the Skins 31-16 late in the fourth quarter, but the Saints scored two touchdowns and a two-point conversion to send the game to overtime. The Saints defense forced a three-and-out and set up a Wil Lutz game winning field goal.

The red-hot Saints started the season 0-2, but have now won eight straight games as they sit in first place in the NFC South. It is a tight battle with the Carolina Panthers in the division, but right now the Saints are riding high. #Drew Brees is still playing at an elite level at 38 years old, and has led a team which has a great balance of passing and ground games as well as a solid defense.

The big question is, are they truly #Super Bowl contenders?

Balanced game

The Saints have been known for a while as being a team that relies on winning shootouts behind the arm of Brees. This year, the team is much more balanced. Despite giving up 31 points today, the Saints defensive unit was ranked eighth in least yards-per-game (312.3) and sixth best in point-per-game given up (18.3). They are middle of the pack in turnovers at 13, which is still a decent number.

As for the offense, as previously mentioned, Brees is still Brees. In today's win, he had 385 passing yards with two touchdowns, which gives him 2,783 yards and 15 touchdowns on the year. He also sits in the top-10 in quarterback rating. In addition, the running game has been nothing short of fantastic. The efforts of Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara have made the Saints one of the best rushing teams in the NFL.

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They went into today's game with the third most rushing yards and now sit at 1,440 after today's game. The Saints rushing attack currently has an NFL-leading 15 touchdowns.

Overall, they now have the second-best point differential (+106) in the NFC.

NFC Competition

The Saints have one of the best records in football, and there will be a number of teams challenging them as Super Bowl favorites. While they are in first place, the Panthers are not far behind them in the NFC South. One could win the division and another a wild card. If they meet, the teams both are stacked with veterans and are very familiar with each other. Also, we cannot count out Matt Ryan and the Falcons in the division just yet, as they have the weapons to make a playoff run at 5-4 currently. This is another team the Saints are obviously familiar with.

Outside their division, a team that is a bigger favorite in the NFC are the Philadelphia Eagles. A playoff matchup between those two teams would be very interesting.

A potential advantage the Saints would have in a potential playoff game would be that sensation Carson Wentz currently does not have playoff experience, while Brees has plenty of it. Other teams that lead their divisions include the Minnesota Vikings and Los Angeles Rams. The Vikings defense would probably be a bigger threat to the Saints offense, while the balance of the Rams offense can be tricky for the Saints defense in potential match ups.

Looking forward

Overall, the Saints right now seem to be one of the teams to beat in the NFC. They are not the sole team to beat considering how good the Eagles and Vikings have been, but they have what it takes to win. Their balanced game is key moving forward, and if they can execute everything they have been doing in the playoffs, then Drew Brees may have a good shot at a second ring. Until they lose, they should be favored in most games.

With all of that said, the Saints have a tough schedule. They have to play the Falcons twice and the Panthers one more time. Those are big games for the Saints that they are going to want to win to seal the division title. They also have to face the Rams on the road. The Jets and Buccaneers are the other remaining games.

If the Saints can beat the Panthers and Falcons, then they should no doubt be among the championship favorites.