Another road game against a team in purple, another W racked up for the Saints. Sure it wasn’t all plain sailing on either side of the ball for the Saints but it was again a professional and gritty win in a tough environment we all know about from last year. I just wanted to do a quick recap of the defensive unit from last night’s game.
I swear if I hear the words “Minneapolis Miracle” again I’m gonna throw up. As expect, most of the pregame talk focused on last year’s playoff game between these two at the same stadium, we all know what happened so let’s not go there again, last night was all about righting the wrongs of that game and the Saints showing their quality this season. They did that with aplomb with the Defense coming back with 4 sacks, 5 tackles for a loss, 1 forced fumble, 1 forced fumble recovery and 1 pick which was returned for a touchdown. I struggle to remember the last time I saw the Saints get a pick 6. They may have allowed 359 pass yards with 2 scores another 85 yards with a score on the ground but this was an improved showing from previous weeks by the Saints D, mainly for making those turnovers count and getting them at crucial, momentum swinging times in the game.
Marcus Davenport had himself a day with 2 sacks recorded including one which was fumbled but not called. The rookie has been having a quietly good season for the Saints, although he doesn’t play every snap (51% yesterday) he is seeing more of the play and as mentioned before everyone who questioned the staff from trading up for him are quietly eating their words, let’s keep its going MD.
PJ Williams. Let’s talk PJ. A strange day for him, being targeted on multiple occasions and giving up quite a few yards (and scores) but and it’s a big but, he read Diggs’ route to perfection, kept running and was in the perfect place to make the catch. Once it was in his grasp, it wasn’t going anywhere except the other way into the Vikings Endzone, watching your team get a pick-6 has to be one of the more beautiful things in football. No one ever doubted you PJ! He will need to tighten up for the Rams game however.
Demario Davis impresses me more and more every week. That guy is fast, and so everywhere all the time. Did we clone him and keep it on the DL? He always seems to be in the right place at the right time to bat a pass down or make a crucial tackle when it’s looking like they might be getting away. One of the best signing the Saints have made on defense in recent years.
Recently acquired Eli Apple had a good debut for the black and gold recording 9 tackles, sure he may have given up a couple of big plays and got called from P.I twice but he is still working his way into this squad and I think he will get better with time. If he can get his head down right away and work with the coaching staff he could be as good as Marshon Lattimore over time. Lattimore himself had a nice pick up and run off the fumble caused by Alex Anzalone which was HUGE before halftime in the game, great work by all there, you see what happens when half your starting linebackers aren’t out injured.
How ‘bout Sheldon Rankins too with 2 sacks recorded, big time hits too, another guy who is getting better every week.
It wasn’t perfect, it never is with the Saints Defense but it is getting there, we’ve had some real tough match-ups over the last few weeks and more to come with the Rams in town on Sunday.
The rush defense will be key once again on Sunday with Gurley playing on the other side and we will need to tighten up the pass defense too. We can’t go giving up big chunk play yards to a guy like Goff. Pressure on the QB will need to be high, 4 sacks is a good return from this team, more to come Sunday would be very useful.
The crowd impact will be huge too, force their mistakes, get them to jump early, the difference in the next game could be those 5 yards here or there.
Let’s get those Rams in town and take their 0 away, don’t speak too soon but this could be a preview of a playoff game.
Great win again Boys, let’s get it again in weeks’ time.