Welcome back to a new series piece for 2019. Before each game, I’ll point out the five questions I have for the team that I’ll be looking out for in the upcoming game.
In Week 5, the New Orleans Saints are have their first divisional matchup of the year, a meeting with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in New Orleans. Here are the biggest questions I have for the team:
- Can the play of Marshon Lattimore and the secondary keep it up? The Saints secondary played lights-out last week against the Dallas Cowboys, but Amari Cooper was less than 100%, Jason Witten is 50 years old, and Michael Gallup missed the game. This week, they’ll have a much more talented group of receivers to deal with in Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and OJ Howard.
- Can Teddy Bridgewater attack downfield? The Tampa defense has been stout against the run so far this year, and it has been the cornerbacks for the Buccaneers that have struggled. We know Sean Payton gameplans to attack the opposition’s weakness, but that might mean playing outside of the strengths of his starting quarterback.
- Who will step up in the passing game? If the Saints are going to chase chunk plays, they will need someone else in addition to Michael Thomas and Alvin Kamara to step it up in the passing game. Ted Ginn has virtually been nonexistent with Bridgewater under center, Jared Cook has failed to live up to his New Orleans hype, and Lil’Jordan Humphrey was only targeted once last week.
- Can the offensive line clean things up? Penalties were an issue last week and had Teddy and the offense consistently behind the chains. You know that had to drive Sean Payton crazy. Hopefully that ship gets righted sooner rather than later.
- Will the turnovers keep happening? It’s almost starting to feel like 2009 with the lucky bounces the Saints are getting in the turnover department now. Jameis Winston has a knack for turning the ball over, and anything the Saints can do to get the ball out of the Tampa Bay offense’s hands would be huge.
So those are the things I’m looking at in the game. What about you? What are you looking at specifically in this game? Something different? Tell me in the comments. Send me presents.