The New Orleans Saints are riding the winning wave, which is swelling to a crest following their third straight victory.
After starting 0-2 with double-digit losses to Minnesota and New England, the Saints' defense has clamped down, Drew Brees and the offense have put enough points on the board, and New Orleans is over .500 for the first time since Week 17 of 2013.
"We want to continue to win. Winning feels good. Winning cures a lot of ills. But I don't think we ... we still don't know how good we can be," Brees said, via ESPN's Mike Triplett. "But each week I feel like we get a better idea of what we're capable of, and we'd like to keep that going in the right direction."
In their three wins, the Saints have averaged 35.3 points per game, the defense allowed 17.0 points scored, and the team is plus-six in turnover differential. Since Week 3, New Orleans is first the NFL in point differential (+55) and sack differential (+11).
Surprisingly, it's the defense that has led the way with Cameron Jordan playing at an All-Pro level and rookie corner Marshon Lattimore locking down receivers on the outside. Since Week 3, the New Orleans' defense ranks second in the NFL in passer rating allowed, second in yards per play, fourth in yards per game allowed (273.7), sixth in points per game allowed (17.0) and seventh in passing yards per game allowed (188.3).
Despite the accolades his team is receiving during the winning streak, coach Sean Payton pumped the breaks, rattling off his list of areas the Saints need to improve heading into Sunday's game versus the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field.
"We'll have no chance if we can't clean up some of these areas," Payton said. "Our third-down numbers offensively ... our communication defensively and eliminating some of the big plays that we've given up, even in the last game. I think our field-goal protection has struggled -- it's going to cost us in a game. Our penalties on special teams are going to cost us in a game."
Not facing Aaron Rodgers is a boon for New Orleans, but no road win comes easy, especially outdoors in Green Bay.
"Obviously, we have some momentum. We like the direction that we're going. We understand the things that have happened [over] these last three wins that have allowed us to win," Brees said. "And I think when you taste that success, the light bulb comes on a little bit and you are able to realize when we do this, it gives us a great chance to win. When we do this, this hinders our chances of winning. So we're just becoming a smarter team."