To say the New Orleans Saints have had a tumultuous off season would be the understatement of a lifetime.  The 'bountygate' scandal cost the team a defensive coordinator, a head coach (for a season), and a linebacker (also for a season, possibly half a season).

The good news for the 'who dat' nation is that quarterback Drew Brees was handsomely rewarded for his MVP caliber play the past few seasons.

The media's visceral reaction to bountygate was that 2012 would be a lost season for New Orleans.  With the benefit of time and perspective we are remembering this is a damn good football team, especially on offense.

Drew Brees is essentially an offensive coordinator on the field and interim coach Joe Vitt will keep the ship afloat in Payton's absence.

We know this team will rack up the yards and points on offense, but will the defense play at a championship level?  To help us answer those questions, we summoned the spirit......(ok a little too New Orleansy, I get it)........rather we called our friend, Bryan Salmond, weekend sports anchor for WWL-TV in the crescent city.