Celebrity poll says Colts are going to defeat Saints

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The Colts are going to stampede the Saints this Sunday.

That's the opinion of the majority of celebrities who participated in the 21st annual Scripps Howard Celebrity Super Bowl Poll. Out of the 100 famous folks who made predictions, 60 believe that the Indianapolis Colts will win Super Bowl XLIV, while 40 picked the New Orleans Saints.

Most of the celebrities picked Indianapolis for one reason: quarterback Peyton Manning, the National Football League's Most Valuable Player.

"It’s hard to go against Peyton Manning," said golfer Jack Nicklaus, who picked Indianapolis, 31-28. "He will do just about whatever he has to do to win the football game. He’s the best."

Added Fox TV host Bill O'Reilly: "Indianapolis, 27-20. Peyton Manning will be the difference. The Saints won’t be able to stop him."

O'Reilly may be on to something. He's correctly predicted the winners of the last six Super Bowls in the Scripps Celebrity Poll.

A few celebrities picked the Colts because of their big-game experience. Indianapolis won the Super Bowl in 2007, while this is the first Super Bowl for New Orleans.

"Indianapolis, 38-28," said LeBron James of the NBA's Cleveland Cavaliers. "Both teams are very talented, but Indianapolis has been in this position before and I think their experience will be too much for New Orleans to handle."

Added Sherri Shepherd, co-host of "The View": "Indianapolis, 30-27. I have to go with the tried and tested Colts with proven prior Super Bowl experience over the eagerness of the Saints."

Other celebs went with the Colts for more eclectic reasons.

"Indianapolis, 28-24, because they're slightly favored by the sports books," said Drew Carey, host of "The Price is Right." "No other reason. Honestly, flip a coin."

Actress Florence Henderson foresees a 21-7 Colts victory.

"I picked the Indianapolis Colts because I’m also from Indiana and we Hoosiers stick together!" she said.

If the Colts win, it will be the 14th time in 21 years that a majority of the celebrities have picked the Super Bowl winner. If the Saints win, it will make several celebrities very happy.

"I think the Saints have heart and determination to bring home a ring," said actress Michelle Rodriguez, who stars in the box office smash, "Avatar." "The mixture of heart and discipline will persevere. Go Saints!"

Rodriguez picked the Saints to win, 31-23, while actress Eva La Rue forecasts a 27-12 Saints win.

"I like the Saints because they have fleur-de-lis on their helmets," said La Rue, who stars on "CSI: Miami." "They are therefore 'more fashion forward.' "

NBA star Shaquille O'Neal is also on board with the Saints, even using the team's unofficial chant in his prediction.

"New Orleans, 34-23. This is going to be very special for the great people of New Orleans and Louisiana," said O'Neal, an 18-year veteran in his first season with the Cavaliers. "The Saints have the talent AND the resilience to win. Who Dat?"

The celebrity who picks the winning team and whose guess at the final score comes the closest to the actual final score wins the Scripps Howard Super Sage Award. Last year's winner was actress Patricia De Leon, who picked the Pittsburgh Steelers to beat the Arizona Cardinals, 27-24 -- just one point off the actual final score of 27-23.

This year De Leon picked New Orleans to win, 27-24, if it rains, and 37-31, if it doesn't rain. Tennis legend Martina Navratilova (1998) and actor Dennis Farina (2005) are the only two celebrities in the history of the Scripps Howard Celebrity Super Bowl Poll to have picked the winning team and gotten the score exactly right.

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