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Falcons 25 @ Saints 29: The View from Section 108

The Score

Fans, Media, Bloggers, Message Board Guy: 1

Payton: 0

You should all pat yourselves on the back. Every one of you. Even you, angry message board guy.

You all knew exactly what this team needed: a commitment to the run game and a more balanced offense. We've all been complaing about it for weeks. Now here we are in week 14 and we finally saw today, against the Falcons, just how well our team can run the ball.

And all that arguing about who should run the ball and who is the better back? Guess what...they're both great! Reggie and Pierre have different strengths but they are both talented play makers with raw skill. These guys can definitely be the future of the Saints running game if Payton would just allow it. Today he allowed it. He had better allow it in the future when the situation calls for it.

I will admit I am the kind of person who actually thinks this is bittersweet though. I mean, it's great that the Saints established the run and proved that we can actually move the ball on the ground but what the hell took so long? I mean really. In fact, I'm a little pissed off. What took Payton and this team so long to even fathom that the gameplan they executed today might have worked in games past? Are any of us really surprised that Pierre Thomas is the first running back on the Saints to gain 100-yards on the ground this season? I'm not. And so I'm angry.

Without having looked at anything else yet, here are the rest of my initial observations from the Superdome this afternoon. Pardon and mistakes.

  • Bullocks was announced as the starter. I was a little worried.
  • Deuce did not look so good today. He failed to convert on a 3rd and 1. It hasn't been looking good for our hero lately.
  • Other than the jump ball in the end zone he gave up for a touchdown, Usama Young looked pretty solid out there. He made a great tackle on a Falcons punt return and made a great pass breakup on third down.
  • Speaking of punting, I thought Pakulak looked really good out there today. He has got a big leg and he used it a couple of times today giving the Saints good field position. After that 70 yarder from last week, I think he's a keeper.
  • I am starting to get used to all these Jason David interceptions. I don't know what has gotten into him lately but he is becoming quite valuable. Let's all hope this is just the beginning. Bonus points for the Carlton Dance. Forget Jason Taylor; ABC could cast an entire season of Dancing with the Stars using only Saints players.
  • Other than that the secondary still gave up a lot of frustrating plays, looking like the 2007 defense. Giving up a 3rd and 21 late in the game is completely unnaceptable.
  • Hartley=Perfect
  • Following Jason David's interception (and subsequent dance session), Reggie broke off a great run for what I believe was the longest of his career.
  • Payton actually won another challenge. But he lost his second one so he broke even on the day.
  • I counted two plays in which the referee's missed fairly blatant interference calls on the Atlanta defense.
  • The crowd wasn't as into the game as usual. Only until the very end was it significantly louder.
  • Shockey is now starting to regularly put up solid numbers and becoming a favorite target of Drew's. He still has yet to find the endzone.
  • Colston still appears to be struggling at times. He is definitely not catching passes he normally would. Anyone else getting a little worried?
  • Matt Ryan threw a pass away over the end zone and into the open arms of a Saints fan who proceeded to dance and celebrate. Merry Christmas.
  • As great as Pierre did running the ball, don't forget about the kick return he almost brought back for the touchdown that put the Saints in great field position.
  • The Saints got absolutely no pressure on Matt Ryan today. He had all day to make his throws. The defensive line shares just as much of the blame as the secondary for the big passing plays the Saints defense gave up.
  • However, I will say that Will Smith made a nice play late in the game to stuff the run for a loss. It looked like he froze for a minute because he was so surprised to be all alone in the backfield one on one with the running back.
  • Just a normal day at the office for Drew. I'm sure he was relieved to not have all of the pressure put on his shoulders for once.
  • Stat of the Day: 0 turnovers.

Make the jump for a bunch of pictures!

NFL Scores, Schedule and Blog Posts - SB Nation

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This wood piece is about 6 feet high and it's in the front yard of a house uptown. Pretty crazy!

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A brass band playing on the walk to the Superdome.

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Look whose playing!

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Jason David casually guarding Michael Jenkins.

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Santa Gumbo

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One of the 3rd and 1's that we couldn't convert.

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This guys outfit was the Pope meets Flavor Flav.

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I took this shot for Dave the Falconer. I already posted it on The Falcoholic. His hat is spelled wrong!

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Reggie back to return a punt.

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This one's for all the guys out there.

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Devery at the line.

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Super Fan super reunion. Optimus Saint and Whistle Head.

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The two idiots I brought to the game. Yeah...they're into it. They are trying to figure out who sings the song, "Unbelievable." The answer is E.M.F...not INXS.

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Right after Pierre's last touchdown.

Here is the open thread roll call. Great job guys. Hope you had fun.

Total Users: 16
Total Posts: 471
Total Threads: 1

Name # of Posts
stujo4 138
Steve the fan 74
pukenbowl 67
BigTMill 59
fruly 37
MtnExile 32
asaint 27
jjwest11 12
Hollywoo! 8
Dave the Falconer 4
TAYDIGGA 4
SaintBevo 3
MobileSaint 2
CajunCavern 2
SpindianSaints 1
BayouRebel 1