This was not the most impressive wins, but it still counts. The New Orleans Saints turned the ball over twice, both by Jameis Winston. Winston also had a low completion percentage on the game but the offense still over 350 yards of total offense. This was only the second time the Saints passed this mark this season. The Saints lost the time of possession battle as well, holding the ball nearly 13 minutes less than the Washington Football Team. With the bye week coming up, the Saints get a much needed, albeit ugly, win to go into the bye with more wins than losses.
Welcome Back, Sean Payton
This was the kind of play calling and game planning that Saints fans have been waiting for this season. The numbers were not necessarily the best but this week showed that Payton is not afraid to let his players play. This Saints team has injuries in almost every position so several people have had to step in and play. It seemed like the the Saints were trying to coach around this too much in past weeks. Payton let the offense attempt to make plays this game, letting Winston throw the ball 30 times.
Jameis Winston only passed for a 50% completion percentage with these 30 throws. He also threw for four touchdowns though. One of these touchdown passes was Winston’s career long at 72-yards. This play came after Winston threw an early interception as well. Payton not recoiling at the early interception was a great sign for Winston and the Saints going forward. This is the offense that those around the Saints hoped would emerge with Payton and Winston.
Saying Goodbye is Okay Sometimes
One of the departures from the Saints this past off-season was beloved punter Thomas Morstead. Most Saints fans were unaware of the heir in waiting though. Blake Gillikin changed the field position in this game several times. On five punts, Gillikin averaged nearly 54 yards per punt. Three of these were downed within Washington’s 20 yard line. Two of these were downed within Washington’s three yard line. This kind of field position kept the pressure on Washington’s young quarterback, Taylor Heinicke.
One of these directly contributed to the Saints Hail Mary to end the first half. After Washington was unable to get past their own three-yard line, a punt set the Saints up with good field position but with limited time. After Washington punted though, Jameis Winston put the ball up high and Marquez Calloway answered the prayer for a quick Saints score. Gillikin’s put inside Washington’s five yard line helped put the Saints offense in the position for this long pass.
Do you think the Saints will be better after the bye week?
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Can someone stop making Saints voodoo dolls?
The amount of injuries this team has faced this year is hard to fathom. In this week’s game, the Saints had two more key players go down. Deonte Harris suffered a hamstring injury early in the contest. It put him out for the rest of the game, leading Alvin Kamara returning punts. Hopefully Harris’ injury can heal over the bye week because putting Kamara on punt returns is dangerous to his health.
Taysom Hill also suffered a brutal hit from Washington. Hill was running a pattern and went for the ball. On his way down, a Washington player hit him in the head, knocking him to the ground. This hit drew a personal foul penalty and will likely also draw a fine from the NFL. The hit was uncalled for and should be the kind that warrants an ejection. Hill was immediately carted off the field ruled out with a concussion. If Hill misses any time do to this hit, the Saints offense will need to find other ways to handle short-yardage situations.
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