The New Orleans Saints travelled to the City of Angels to face the Los Angeles Rams this past Sunday and I was one of thousands of Saints fans in attendance. It was the first time the Saints have played in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum since they defeated the then Los Angeles Raiders there in 1994. Despite the loss and the end of the thrilling eight-game winning streak, it was an amazing atmosphere with great energy being around the proud and vocal legion of SoCal’s chapter of Who Dat Nation.
Here are a few shots and accounts from Sunday’s game:
The iconic Los Angeles landmark greets the fans as they arrive at the game.
After taking that photo, as I passed the landmark, Jarrius Roberston and Connor Payton emerged from beneath the main arch. I asked Connor if we’re winning today and he confidently replied “Oh yeah!”. Can’t blame the kid, I thought we’d win too.
The Saints defense prepares for a long afternoon on the choppy turf at the Coliseum.
One of the very first things I noticed as we were walking down to our seats was how awful the field surface looked. It was strikingly choppy and dry. I had hoped the surface would be much better considering USC did not have a home game the day before. Apparently it didn't matter.
Drew Brees feeling the frustration early on in the game.
There was no offensive rhythm from the Saints in this game. Alvin Kamara played the part of a superhero, but the Saints offensive line just didn't get the job done in pass protection.
The Saints defense spending too much time on the field, and once again defending the red zone.
Honestly, the Saints defense didn't even play horribly. Cam Jordan was a beast as usual, but without your top-two cornerbacks against a top-five offense like the Rams, you've got to be nearly flawless, and need your offense to help you out. Those things didn't happen.
The LA Memorial Coliseum’s ridiculous amount of seating combined with below average support is the main reason this matchup wasn't flexed to Sunday Night on NBC.
No exaggeration, it was easily a 50/50 split between Saints fans and the home Rams fans. I even heard some Rams fans remark how they did not expect anywhere near this many Saints fans. Another stated there were more Saints fans at this game than any other visiting fanbase this year.
The Saints with a rare opportunity on offense. It honestly felt like they were hardly ever on the field.
The Saints offense had so few chances, I feel like I saw Drew Brees more in the preseason game at the Chargers earlier this year, and he didn't even play!
The blinding sun sets mercifully in the fourth quarter, while the Saints winning streak unfortunately begins to fade along with it.
The sun, while not blazing hot during the game, was steadily in the eyes of the Saints sideline until the fourth quarter, which was annoying to say the least.
PJ Williams and Rafael Bush with a nice pass breakup in the corner of the end zone, forcing the Rams to settle for a field goal.
Wish I had a photo of PJ Williams’ opportunistic interception which occurred not far from this area, but he held up as much as you could have hoped in this one, considering the circumstances. Unfortunately, the Saints were forced to go with Harris as well. It was clear that Marshon Lattimore is not only the best player in the Saints secondary, but he also is the emotional leader of the defense. The mojo was lost without him.
The Rams with a late field goal in the fourth quarter.
The Rams unfortunately did a solid job of salting this one away in the end, unlike Washington the week before.
The Saints and Rams meet at midfield as the clock runs out.
Spirits were down in the stands, and although the Rams fans were happy, you could feel the Saints fans presence and their disappointment cut into the postgame joy for the home fans.
Well, that’s just awful. I can't stand the Rams. Not at all.
I’ll be glad to not have to hear “Whose House? Rams House!” again. Also, for a city with a rich musical history like LA, you can't just play California Love all game long. Do better.
The game was disappointing, but it was great to see the Saints in person, and great to be surrounded by an incredible number of Saints fans.
There were some fun moments here, the best being Alvin Kamara’s spectacular touchdown run, but this one felt like a great opportunity squandered. I wanted to get a photo of a Saints defensive pose, but it wasn't meant to be this week. Myself, the Saints fans in attendance, and all the fans watching at home expected much more. But now we move on, and so do the Saints, as the most critical stretch of the season begins.
Its a loss, but it’s just one loss. Time to win the next one, and to keep the wins coming from there. Who Dat!