Wonder who most wants a mulligan the first week of the new season; Roger or the Saints defense? Do overs would be nice, but both our defense and the Commissioner have to live through that performance and move on. In full disclosure, I hope Roger continues to face a full frontal assault from the public. Eventually, ownership will have to come to grips with the fact he has lost the players trust, the public’s trust, and his ability to do the job.
The Saints defense, needs to, has to, and must get better. I am still trying to figure out how they defense could look so different the second half. First drive; 3 and out, minus yards. Second drive too long a drive, but ended with a great turnover. The longer the game lasted the more confused, sloppy, and vulnerable our defense looked. Too bad for the WhoDats – the game was forced into overtime when we could not get off the field and the offense had a very untimely three and out. The yards were too much, the points were sickening, but the eight out of thirteen third down conversions left our defense flat-footed and tired.
Oh the offense miss-fired – Drew seemed a little off, but the settle for three instead of six let the Falcons stay in the game. Even with those early settles the offense had some solid moments and whenever we can put up 30+ – we should win. We surely miss that killer instinct on the road – we play too passive on both sides of the ball. I expect that to change this week.
Keys To The Game
TACKLING – well that was obvious. The tape (and the score) will tell
TAKING CONTROL – Whether we start on offense or defense – we need to play angry, fast, and screaming. It is time to take control of a game on the road and dominate.
AVOID EARLY SUCCESS FOR BROWNS – If we let them hang around or get some confidence we are doomed. As we sat in the GA Dome last week, while forever optimistic, there was a feeling in the third quarter – we are going to screw around and lose this ball game. That drive before the half, suspect play calling, no pressure on Ryan …..Quit letting the opponent hang around.
ADJUST – One of the hallmarks of the Saints team in 2009, we would make great adjustments – last week we appeared to stare down and tread water. We talked last week about not letting the number three receiver beat us. What we did was allow the third and fourth receiver beat us. When the Falcons came out with the four receiver set, we just spread and let them have too much open area.
PREDICTION – I want to think that this will be ugly for the Browns. I want to see our team avoid playing down to the competition, I want them to exploit every opportunity. I want to see a 40 burger against this weak secondary and I want the defense to get our average below 20 points per game, BUTT that would take holding the Browns to a field goal. Saints 44 – Browns 13. If the defense repeats, this could get ugly.