Analyse this: why aren't the Saints the same dreaded team of 2009.

Don't get me wrong. As I've mentioned elsewhere, I think we are doing fine. In fact, a loss just keeps that silly monkey off of their back near the end of the season concerning a perfect season. Heck, I wouldn't be surprised if Payton did it for that reason ("Awww, let's just run it and see what happens..." - Yeah, right!). It was a perfect loss, really. A fairly tough team in the OTHER conference. But, that's all beside the point. The point is that we are not the team that any opponent in their right mind would have been dreading playing about this time in 2009 and there's been some very speculative complaining about the offense and, specifically, the passing game, myself included. As I say, so far, it's just been speculation (to use a word that isn't too offensive, i.e. nothing to back it up). So, I thought it would be worthwhile to see if I could find where the real fault lies. I'll give you a hint, it's not in the passing game. As you'll see in the table below, the passing game is just about right on target to match 2009. Drew's passing perfection, consistency and rate, really, haven't nudged an inch in the wrong direction, really. He is still the man. There is a huge difference in the overall rate for TDs, though. Almost a 20 touchdown difference (for a season) and its not in passing TDs. Two areas are not making the touchdowns. Rushing and defensive TDs. And, with rushing, it's not just TDs. It's everything. Yards, Avg yards, first downs, TDs...everything. Even the number of rushing plays is off a little. Thank god. I really hope I don't start another round of fingerpointing at this player or that player not doing his job. I think it is much more complex than any of us can begin to comprehend.

There were eight touchdowns by the defense in 2009. That about equals the number of blow-out games in 2009. FPK, though, has been pretty busy and doing a fine job, overall. You'll note that I also threw in 2008 and 2011, just for perspective.

There are some other interesting stats that I have hightlighted, as well. Such as the sack rate is up by a pretty phenomenal amount in 2013. Love it. Another funny thing is that, with what I consider the two most important stats (other than games won), Net points and Turnovers, 2009 and 2013 are very similar because our defense in 2013 has been extremely stingy with points for the opponents (Net points differential) and our offense in 2013 has been very stingy of coughing up the ball (Turnover differential). So, like I said, it's looking pretty good.

Note the 2011 stats, though. I mean, WOW! Pretty phenomenal. Top in Net points, total offense, passing, and 1st downs for the league. So, where did we fall short in 2011? Turnover ratio.

So, really, if you ponder this all. Coach's stressing of the running game and ball security really makes a lot of sense. Whereas, our speculation's been, well, speculation. So, I just hope he can figure out how to punch the ball through on the ground. It seems like the ball security he has under control.

Yeah, I do tend to ANALyse things occasionally. Bye weeks are a good time for it.

Sorry for the lousy shot of the stats but I couldn't think of a better way. I tried just pasting but that never works right. So much for wysiwyg.



This FanPost was written by a reader and member of Canal Street Chronicles. It does not necessarily reflect the views of CSC and its staff or editors.

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