Perhaps the only thing more frequent than a Saints playoff appearance in the Superdome over the last decade or so, is a comment during that postseason match about the home crowd's talent for making enough noise to disrupt opposing decision making on offense.
With restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic in place, that environment won't be present when the team faces the Bears on Sunday/ However, the the team actually was reportedly looking into plans to see if they could make it happen anyways.
Luke Johnson of the New Orleans Times-Picayune was among the reporters speaking to Sean Payton on Wednesday about the upcoming playoff game, when the coach was asked about recreating homefield advantage. The suggestion was, well, pretty wild.
Full quote: "I brought up the idea of testing 50,000 people and quarantining them in a hotel and having the most safest Superdome known to man, scientifically. Bus them, they've tested every day, and you've got a COVID-free facility." (this was said in jest ... I think)— Luke Johnson (@ByLukeJohnson) January 6, 2021
On the surface, the idea makes sense as it's transferring the quite successful bubble approach the NBA and NHL took this summer for their respective postseasons. However, logistically it seems like an absolute nightmare.
For what it's worth, the Saints will be one of the few teams having fans in the stands during their game. Roughly 3,000 fans are expected to be in attendance. It's nowhere near the stadium's capacity, but the energy they bring will certainly be more than nothing, and perhaps just enough to rattle Mitchell Trubisky.