Two things typically travel well in the National Football League -- a good defense and a good running game.
The mystifying New Orleans Saints have neither, and that's why they can't be taken seriously when the conversation turns to Super Bowl 50.
There is no telling what we'll see Sunday when the Saints go marching into FedEx Field in Landover, Md., to tackle the equally puzzling Washington Redskins.
Oh, the Black and Gold provide brief glimpses of turning the corner and becoming a playoff contender with a big defensive stop here, a takeaway there, and a 100-yard game from running back Mark Ingram every now and then.
But those are the exceptions, not the rule.
Truth be told, they won't realize their goals this season with quarterback Drew Brees alone.
Heck, they can't even execute the simple snap-hold-kick operation as we saw during the final minute of regulation in Sunday's troubling 34-28 overtime loss to the lowly Tennessee Titans at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
What should have been a potentially game-winning 46-yard field goal by Kai Forbath in the 59th minute turned into a disastrous block by Titans' cornerback Coty Sensabaugh due largely to a poor snap by Justin Drescher.
Consequently, Drescher could find himself out of a job this week. There also may be a different holder for a third consecutive week with the loss of backup quarterback Luke McCown to season-ending back surgery and the signing of veteran quarterback Matt Flynn.
In other words, Sunday's game against Washington outdoors on grass could feature two new faces in the Saints' snap-hold-kick operation. Not exactly a comforting thought for an already angst-filled Who Dat Nation!
In fact, one of the few things fans can count on in a given week is the probability that veteran cornerback Brandon Browner will draw a flag or two.
He currently leads the NFL with 17 penalties, the most by a Saints player in 15 years.
He drew two flags during a crucial two-minute span in the fourth-quarter (one accepted, one declined) when Tennessee drove into field goal range for the potential go-ahead points. The Saints dodged a bullet when Ryan Succop's 55-yard attempt struck the cross bar with 1:55 remaining, keeping the score at 28 apiece.
Fourteen of the 15 accepted penalties against Browner have resulted in first downs, causing more harm than good for the NFL's 31st-ranked defense.
He should have been flagged for his profanity-laced outburst aimed at a reporter in the Saints' locker room following Sunday's game against Tennessee.
Browner, who signed a three-year, $15 million contract during the offseason, later offered a convoluted apology on his personal twitter account. On Monday, Saints coach Sean Payton defended Browner, calling the 31-year-old defensive captain "an asset to the team.''
I see Browner as a penalty waiting to happen, a weekly liability on a performance-challenged defensive unit that can't/doesn't apply consistent pressure on opposing quarterbacks.
But he is not to blame for the team's lack of running game.
Good defense and a good running game travel well in the NFL.
The Saints should pack both for their trip East. Or else suffer the consequences.