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NFL New Orleans Saints

NFL Schedule Release: New Orleans Saints’ 5 Biggest Games of 2014

Saints' 5 Biggest Games of 2014

drew brees new orleans saints
Crystal LoGuidice- USA Today Sports

The schedules for the 2014 NFL season were released to the public on Wednesday, and now all 32 teams have an idea of what challenges they will be confronting come September. Let's take a look at the five biggest games of 2014 for the New Orleans Saints. Surprisingly, I've chosen all NFC matchups.

5. Week 1 at Atlanta Falcons

matt ryan atlanta flacons
Daniel Shirey- USA Today Sports

5. Week 1 at Atlanta Falcons

matt ryan atlanta flacons
Daniel Shirey- USA Today Sports

The Falcons are looking to bounce back from a poor performance in 2013, and given the talent on the roster, they are likely to do so. Superdome or Georgia Dome, this heated rivalry is always exciting to watch. The outcome of their games is usually determined by the last possession. The Saints and Falcons will both be looking to bag that first division 'W' to kick off the 2014 season.

4. Week 8 vs. Green Bay Packers

aaron rodgers green bay packers
Brace Hemmelgarn- USA Today Sports

4. Week 8 vs. Green Bay Packers

aaron rodgers green bay packers
Brace Hemmelgarn- USA Today Sports

Sunday Night Football against Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Backers in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome? Yes, please. This should be an exhilarating matchup between two high-powered offenses. Conference wins are always crucial on the road to the playoffs, and both New Orleans and Green Bay will be contenders for a top seed in the postseason.

3. Week 9 at Carolina Panthers

luke kuechly carolina panthers
Jeremy Brevard- USA Today Sports

3. Week 9 at Carolina Panthers

luke kuechly carolina panthers
Jeremy Brevard- USA Today Sports

The Panthers are looking to defend their 2013 division title. However, the Saints will be looking to reclaim what was theirs in the past. New Orleans always (and I mean always) seems to have trouble when traveling to Carolina, so a victory at Cam Newton's house would be critical for the Black and Gold. The Panthers are packing a tough defense over there in Charlotte; the challenge awaits Drew Brees and the Saints.

2. Week 10 vs. San Francisco 49ers

san francisco 49ers defense
Cary Edmondson- USA Today Sports

2. Week 10 vs. San Francisco 49ers

san francisco 49ers defense
Cary Edmondson- USA Today Sports

A hidden rivalry is quickly blossoming between New Orleans and San Francisco. Looking at the past few seasons, this matchup is becoming more and more physical every year. The 49ers will be looking to get their revenge on the Saints after falling short in the Superdome last year; a questionable call by the referees sent Jim Harbaugh's crew back to the Bay Area with a loss. Let's just say LB Ahmad Brooks will be after Drew Brees in Week 10.

1. Week 15 at Chicago Bears

jay cutler matt forte chicago bears
Howard Smith- USA Today Sports

1. Week 15 at Chicago Bears

jay cutler matt forte chicago bears
Howard Smith- USA Today Sports

Chicago may not be the Saints' toughest opponent, but traveling to Soldier Field in late December will certainly be one of the more challenging matchups of the year for New Orleans. Average temperatures in Chicago range anywhere from 19-32 degrees that time of year. The Monday night meeting between the Saints and Bears is likely to be played in a wintry scenario, which is something the Saints are not familiar with.