First order of business, Jammal Brown avoided major injury and should be good-to-go. Phew.
Now, here's what writers from around the Interwebs are saying about the Saints:
- Ned Macey, Football Outsiders:
Unfortunately for the Saints, their pass defense is capable of making any opponent a powerful offense. By halftime, the Rams had 17 points and were on their way to 34-7 lead that not even their own incompetent defense could give away in the fourth quarter. The Rams finally had their full complement of skill position players on the field. The Saints’ inability to generate a consistent pass rush allowed the Rams to make do with their ramshackle offensive line, and Marc Bulger had a field day with the Saints’ substandard secondary.
The result was extremely disappointing for the Saints, who missed a chance to climb into a tie for first place in the NFC South. At a certain point, their poor pass defense is almost too big a liability, and nothing is being done to address it. The offense has made adjustments to help them overcome some early-season struggles, but they struggled blocking the blitz in the first half and were undone by just a couple of bad plays.
- Mike Triplett, Times-Picayune:
Say this much for the 2007 Saints: They're going to keep things interesting.
Just when it looked like they had figured it out, just when they had started playing their most efficient and exciting football of the season, they threw another curveball Sunday.
Or was that a stink bomb?
Either way, it was one of the worst performances of their turbulent season, a 37-29 loss to the previously winless St. Louis Rams that Coach Sean Payton admitted was "not as close as the score indicated."
- Sheldon Mickles, The Advocate:
St. Louis Rams defensive coordinator Jim Haslett, who coached the Saints from 2000-05, came up with a plan to stop the passing parade on Sunday in the Superdome.
In returning to the stadium for the first time since Hurricane Katrina struck, Haslett scripted the perfect game plan to throw off the Saints’ timing: he simply decided that Brees wasn’t going to beat his team.
So he blitzed on 16 of the Saints’ first 18 snaps and didn’t stop coming until the game was well out of hand in the final period when the Rams, who were 0-8 coming into the game, took a 34-7 lead en route to a 37-29 victory.
While the Rams had just one sack, they were extremely disruptive in forcing Brees into two first-half interceptions as linebackers Will Witherspoon, Pisa Tinoisamoa and Brandon Chillar took turns barging into the backfield.
- Bob Tompkins, Louisiana Gannett News:
The Saints, at 4-5, are one game back from first place in the NFC South and one game ahead of last place. That is parity.
The Saints are a team teetering between macho and hapless. They don't need a coach, they need a psychiatrist.
In Sunday's game, they showed two personalities. They briefly looked like the bully, scoring effortlessly in just four plays on the game's opening drive, but then they looked like sniffling, homeless refugees.
ED. Note: Douchebag