First things first, a win’s a win. It doesn’t matter how you get them sometimes, as long as you get the job done. The record still reads 10-4, it doesn’t read 10 (but a hell of an ugly win v the Jets) and 4.
I predicted, like most people, that this would be a comfortable win for the Saints, possibly even a blowout. With a young, untested QB in Bryce Petty for the Jets and coming off the back of a shutout against the Bronco’s, I didn’t see the threat. They certainly put up more of a fight than anticipated. However this game could and should have been far more comfortable had the offense not made silly errors at important times.
Let’s talk about the good first. Drew Brees, another decent game for him (26/36 for 285 yards, 2 TDs and 1 INT – JUST shy of that 70,000 career mark) with the one interception being a strange one. You don’t really expect the DE Leonard Williams to make that play, I can forgive Drew for that.
Michael Thomas, the guy is a stud, how he doesn’t get some of the plaudits like OBJ and Antonio Brown to name a few, I don’t know, maybe it’s because we spread the ball around more rather than target one specific receiver. His twitter handle of “Can’t guard Mike” really lives up to its name. He could have had 3 scores and over 100 yards, in the end he had to settle for 1 score for 93 Yards. The first was a good tackle by the defender, getting him down inches shy, the second is such a tight call but he should have dragged that foot, he is the type of guy who will learn from that and not do it again, trust me – how good was that throw by Brees by the way. The third is just good hustle, he made crucial catches at important times for the Saints, keeping drives alive and showing good strength to get those extra, important yards.
The run game was reasonable, Ingram with a nice longgg carry of 50 with a couple of scores (that 50 and a 1 yard TD), but take that away and there wasn’t a huge showing, very respectable nonetheless, maybe I’m greedy. This was mainly down the Jets blocking well upfront and a few indifferent play calls. Kamara was underused a bit for me (from scrimmage) but that’s fully understandable when he had just come off of a concussion and we have the Dirty Birds next week. Special mention here to Zach Line, our #42 Full Back has been my unsung hero of the running game, but not for his running funnily enough. He blocks very well and allows the Ingram’s and Kamara’s of this World to get the big plays and scores from scrimmage, Ingram’s game sealing run being a prime example of this. Also Michael Hoomanawanui (top scorer in scrabble) left the game early with a concussion, he’s not the Jimmy Graham type receiving TE but he does a damn good job of blocking on both run and pass plays, having him out early was a miss. Tight End is definitely a position we are lacking in, even more so with Fleener having concussion issues himself and HooMan out for this one. I don’t watch much college football but maybe the draft will offer up a chance to sort this problem out.
Now for the bad. Brandon Coleman. I’m a fan of our #16 but he showed why he doesn’t get more targets with those two fumbles in the red zone. Coleman has all the qualities you want in a Wide Receiver, he’s tall, athletic and can catch the ball but his handling on Sunday was poor, I mean really poor. The first is a difficult one, he does everything right with the catch and yards after but his ball protection is lacking. However I can forgive this one, if you had a guy running straight at you, all his body weight behind him and going straight at you, helmet first, could you hold the ball? Didn’t think so. I know we are not NFL Wide Receivers (Thank god) but that is tough. Even Mr. Thomas may have struggled with that one. The second one, I cannot forgive. There was a camera angle on Sunday which showed how weakly he held the ball, no protection whatsoever, asking for it to be hit out, credit the Jets defender for the recovery after. I think the comms described it as if he was “holding a loaf of bread”, I couldn’t find a better analogy than that one. I was up and shouting at the screen on this one (apologies to the neighbors). It just wasn’t acceptable and I was surprised he wasn’t benched following it. What makes me even more surprised that he didn’t get benched was that we have Willie Snead there waiting for a target. He showed with his one Catch for 23 Yards that he’s still here and waiting for the opportunity, surely he is a better option than a 2 fumble guy. Maybe Coach Peyton wanted Coleman to atone for his mistakes, I don’t know, it just didn’t make sense.
To finish, the ugly. After a fast start on offense, racking up 17 points on the first 3 drives, the offense stalled, not scoring again until the 4th quarter. This could have been different if the turnovers hadn’t happened but this was the period where I felt Kamara and Snead could have been utilized just that little bit more to take away the jangling nerves and keep my shouting in check (again, sorry neighbors). We have to improve on this for the next game, the Falcons won’t give us as many chances, unless Matty “Ice” -What an awful nickname by the way, sick emoji – starts throwing up (see what I did there) picks left, right and center again.
Falcons hate week starts now, hopefully the boys get to prime fitness, get the turnovers out of the system and fired up for this game. The game next Sunday is huge as we all know. Revenge required. Win required.
Let’s go Saints, Who Dat!