Preseason Opener Game Thread: Patriots vs. Saints

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NFL Preseason Week 1

New England Patriots (0-0) vs. New Orleans Saints (1-0)

Thursday, August 9th | 7:30 PM ET

Football is finally back! More than six months after the team's crushing Super Bowl loss at the hands of the Giants, Patriots fans can rejoice: the 2012 season is sort of officially here.

While most casual fans aren't usually excited by the preseason, Patriots fans do have good reason to anticipate this August's games. The team has added a plethora of new offensive weapons, such as Brandon Lloyd, Jabar Gaffney, and Donte Stallworth - all of whom are expected to make their debuts for the team tonight. On defense, the Patriots are young and dynamic, but also relatively unknown. Every preseason rep will be important for the growth on that side of the ball.

As for the game itself, Drew Brees and the Saints offense should provide a nice test for the Patriots secondary, while the makeshift offensive line of the Patriots is sure to be challenged early and often by the Saints front seven. Considering the Saints got the better of the Patriots in Tuesday's full pads practice, I'll give them the slight edge in tonight's game.

Greg's Prediction: Saints 27 Patriots 24

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