clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

The View from Section 140: It's gonna be a long season, Saints fans

New, comments

Three preseason games into 2016 and it looks like the Saints are actually moving backwards.

NFL: Preaseason-Pittsburgh Steelers at New Orleans Saints Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

The first time back in the Superdome each season for that first preseason game is always fun. A chance to catch up with old friends who sit near you each season that you haven't seen all spring/summer. A chance to take in the view from your seat for the first time in a while. And, of course, the chance to see your favorite football team take the field once again after worrying that football season might never come.

That last part was probably the most disappointing part of the evening. Because once again this preseason, the Saints looked like garbage. The most impressive thing last night was the new video screen. I've got to admit, I thought it would be a minor upgrade, like putting lipstick on a pig. But once I was in my seat, I had to admit it was pretty impressive. Taking up the entirety of each end of the Dome, it's definitely a formidable presence. Even sitting all the way down in the second row the screen feels like it's right on top of you. I’m sure we’ll still be talking about a new stadium next off-season though.

I know it’s only preseason; we shouldn’t be concerned with the final score. But what we saw from the first team starters should have all Saints fans panicking. The third preseason game is supposed to be the dress rehearsal for the regular season, when the starters get the most playing time in preparation for Week 1 of the regular season. If this was an actual dress rehearsal for an actual Broadway play, the production company would cancel opening night and find an all new cast.

Are we even sure that Rob Ryan was fired? Because last night’s defense looked like the same old crap we’ve seen for years now. No improvement whatsoever. Is it possible they actually got worse this offseason? Actually, I take that back. I liked what I saw from the secondary. I think they look much improved in coverage. It's nice to see them actually near receivers and in position to make a play every once in a while. And I think they would be even better if they got even just a little bit of help from the defensive line. But I’ve resigned myself to the fact that that’s just never going to happen. Like a mythical creature, a Saints pass rush is something you only hear mildly-believable stories about but never get to actually see with your own eyes.

And their offensive counterpart was equally unimpressive. I think we’ve seen enough from the offensive line now to know that ignoring it all off-season was probably not the best idea. This team needs to get on the phone with Dallas this week and pull the trigger on a Ronald Leary trade. Give them one of our running backs. We don’t know how to use them anyway. And if Terron Armstead’s injury from last night is anything significant than the Saints are straight up f***ed.

By the way, not that it has anything to do with how good the Saints will be this year, but I think we can all admit the Garrett Grayson experiment results are in and they're pointing at an epic failure. But you don’t have to take my word for it. Just listen to Sean Payton’s post-game press conference. Even when he’s disappointed with a player, he’ll only make thinly veiled comments alluding to it. But last night, he didn’t hold back his feelings about what will end up being a wasted third round draft pick.

“He struggled tonight. I was disappointed with a couple of those plays. The interception to the running back is poor and obviously he gets blinded on the linebacker throw and forces it so that was troubling. He had a good play early on with a touchdown pass, but I would like to see him further along, at this point, than he is.”

So buckle up, Saints fans. I think this season is going to be a long one filled with a lot of the same frustrations we’ve been experiencing for years.