Instead of just giving you one perspective on the NFL playoff games to be played this season, GuysNation gives you a whole round table discussion!

Saturday, 4:30 – New Orleans at San Francisco

Rob: San Francisco got to this point based on a strong defense which is extremely stingy against the run, but the Saints have too many weapons in the passing game for that to matter. Take nothing away from whichever of the four Saints running backs play in this game, they should combine for over 100 yards rushing and at least one touchdown on Saturday in a winning effort over the 49ers.

Danny Rouhier (@FunnyDanny on Twitter): It’s now become fashionable for NFL analysts to tell us that we are undervaluing San Francisco and that they should be the favorite this weekend. I think they actually have a point. New Orleans is lethal on turf and the disparity between what they do at home and the road is pretty striking. San Fran has a slow track and is built to posses the ball. The question is, do we buy New Orleans’ defense? If they turn the Niners over a couple times, they’ll win. I picked New Orleans before the playoffs to go to the Super Bowl before the playoffs so I’ll be sweating this one out.

XIV: This to me is the most intriguing matchup. Its Old School versus New School. San Francisco has a fantastic defense and runs the ball. Their kicker, David Akers had an amazing year. They don’t score a ton of TDs. They hold the ball. Maybe get a great return from Ted Ginn Jr. Their opponents? Are quick strike. High flying. They score… and score… and score… and when you think they’re done scoring? They’ll probably throw some more. Saints are a fast paced high octane offense. Defense is opportunistic, but far from stout. Can San Fran slow down the Saints? Can the offense keep up if the Saints are able to move the ball and score? Interesting thing I heard today. Saints are 0-5 in their last 5 road playoff games. This is the game I’m most torn on. I’m going to take the Saints on entangibles… More playoff experience and the momentum. Saints 35, 49ers 27.

Wallace (@bwall87): I think this is a very interesting matchup. The Niners love to run, so they can limit the mistakes that Alex Smith can make. The Saints love to throw the ball. The key to the game is going to be Niners defense forcing turnovers. If they can do that they will win. I will pick the Saints winning 31-24

Rob: For anyone who didn’t enjoy the BCS National Championship game, you’d better hope San Francisco’s defense doesn’t shut down the Saints. One prediction I heard on the radio the other day was that the 49ers could play the battle of field position all game, forcing the Saints to punt, making a few first downs, then getting a field goal. Rinse, repeat. All game long. Logic tells me that the Saints aren’t going to be shut down like that, but that analysis about the field goal wars is giving me nightmares.

Robert Aitken (@RobertAitkenBR): This will be an old fashioned shoot out between these two teams. New Orleans has quickly turned from a dangerous dark horse to the team to beat in the NFC. Two of the best rush offenses in the league square off here, but San Francisco’s run defense is leaps and bounds better than anyone else in football. Their job will be to keep Darren Sproles at bay, which could derail the Saints passing attack in effect. The main person who needs to step up for the 49ers to survive this is Alex Smith. The quarterback that Jim Harbaugh believed in and revitalized his career needs to do his best Drew Brees impression. Matthew Stafford tried his best last week in the Wild Card round, but his defense could not keep him in the game.

Smith, while not the strongest QB left in the playoffs, has the most to prove and can gain a heck of a lot of fans this weekend with his game. Call me crazy, but I am picking the Niners to find a way on offense and lean on the defense that got them this far. What many may consider to be an upset will push San Fran to their first conference championship game since in 15 years.

JMB: The Saints have it this year. They are playing at such a high level on offensive and their defense is more than passable, that I just don’t see the 49ers keeping pace here. The defense might keep them in the game early, but eventually Brees is going to make a couple big plays, and it will rest on Alex Smith to keep them in the game. I like him as a manager, not a focal point of the game. Plus, I am not sold on SF actually keeping them in the game for long. I would love it to be competitive, but just a few weeks ago I saw a Steelers team with 50% Big Ben leave a lot of open plays on that field – the kind that Drew Brees and co. won’t miss. A Harbaugh/Harbaugh SB would be a great storyline, but I think Jim makes his exit here.

Another IWC Jerk (@AnotherIWCJerk): This game is the greatest clash of philosophies this weekend, the defense-minded 49ers against the high-powered offense of the Saints. I know I said on Twitter last weekend that I was expecting Packers/Saints for the NFC Championship, but I’m officially taking that back.

I think San Francisco moves on because I think they will shut down the Saints and keep them to field goals and maybe one or two good drives.

The Saints have also proven that they aren’t exactly the greatest team on the road, especially at an outdoor stadium. which was really my deciding factor in picking this game. It will still be a good game, but the Saints road to another Super Bowl ends here.
Official Pick: San Francisco 49ers

Jon: Disclaimer – I am a Saints fan. This “Saints can’t win on the road in the playoffs” talk is getting really old. If you actually look at the games they lost, they really didn’t deserve to win any of them. Yeah sure, they shouldn’t lose to a 7-9 Seahawks team but the Saints were one-dimensional last year and had very little chance to advance beyond that round anyway. This team is much closer to the 2009 version, except for the turnover differential, and that is where I think tomorrow’s game will be decided. If the Saints turn the ball over, it will be uphill sledding as Frank Gore runs amok. If they protect the ball, it’s only a matter of time before they wear down a very good 9ers defense. I think they learned their lesson in St. Louis and will come out sharp. Saints win – 20 something to 10 something.

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So that’s the perspective from the Round Table, what say you?