The reeling New Orleans Saints (3-6) were traveling to Pittsburgh to face an equally bad Steelers team (2-6) in a battle of underachieving teams. Coming off a bye week and at home, the Steelers had an advantage in their first meeting against the Saints in four years. The Saints meanwhile were trying to forget their pitiful showing against the Baltimore Ravens last Monday night.
In the first half, the Saints would begin the game in a sleepy fashion, letting the Steelers jump to a 10-0 lead in what looked like a sad repeat of their performance at home against the Ravens last Monday night.
New Orleans’ offense would wake up eventually however, with Andy Dalton getting better protection from the offensive line and starting to connect with his wide receivers, notably Juwan Johnson who would catch a touchdown with under a minute to go in the half to even the score at 10. Wil Lutz had previously made a 44-yard field goal that had brought New Orleans within seven points.
In the second half, both teams went scoreless in the third quarter, while the Steelers added a field goal early in the fourth to take a 13-10 lead. Andy Dalton then tossed his customary bad ball that was tipped by Jarvis Landry and subsequently intercepted by Steelers’ safety Damontae Kazee in Saints’ territory. The Steelers added a touchdown, a 1-yard run into the end zone by quarterback Kenny Pickett to give Pittsburgh a 20-10 lead with 8 minutes left in the game. On the drive the Saints recorded their 10th accepted penalty of the game, tying a season-high.
New Orleans then took the ball and failed to convert a 3rd-and-1 and a 4th-and-1 at their own 34-yard line on the ensuing possession, gifting Pittsburgh the ball in plus-territory and basically putting the nail in the Saints’ coffin.
Pittsburgh however is also a bad team, and the Steelers shanked a 48-yard attempt, letting the Saints off the hook momentarily. Undeterred, New Orleans returned the favor on the very next series, as Andy Dalton was picked off by cornerback Levi Wallace on a deep throw intended for Kevin White.
The Steelers then took the ball at their own 25-yard line and ran the ball down the Saints’ throat yet again, forcing New Orleans to burn all their timeouts. Pittsburgh salted the game away, kneeling to end it and finishing up a 20-10 victory over the hapless Saints.
New Orleans, now at 3-7, is a lost cause for the 2022-23 season, and it is hard to see any light in the franchise’s future at this point.
Below is a quarter-by-quarter recap of the action
- Saints win the toss and defer, the Steelers begin at their 25-yard line, gain one first down but stall and punt
- Saints take over at their 11-yard line, after a false start penalty, New Orleans is quickly behind the chains and goes three-and-out.
- Steelers begin at their 43-yard line, face a 4th-and-2 in Saints’ territory and convert. Kenny PIckett guides the Steelers to the red zone. George Pickens runs into the end zone for a touchdown.
NO: 0 - PIT: 7
- Saints begin at their 10-yard line, Dalton finds Adam Trautman for 18 yards a the Saints’ first first-down of the game. Saints stall near their 40-yard line and punt again.
- Steelers take over at their 20-yard line and continue their drive after a roughing-the-passer penalty. Najee Harris runs for 45 yards into the Saints’ red zone as the quarter ends.
- Saints force the Steelers into a short field goal attempt, that Matthew Wright converts.
- NO: 0 - PIT: 10
- Saints begin at their 29-yard line and Dalton finds Chris Olave for a first down. New Orleans stall on the next set of plays and punts for the third time.
- Steelers start at their 11-yard line and Pittsburgh goes three-and-out for the first time of the day.
- Saints start at their 33-yard line and in two plays they get into Steelers’ territory for the first time of the day. Dalton finds Rashid Shaheed to extend the drive. Saints eventually stall and Wil Lutz makes a 44-yard field goal to put the Saints on the board.
- NO: 3 - PIT: 10
- Steelers start at their 25-yard line and drive into Saints’ territory, but Kaden Elliss sacks Kenny Pickett to force the Steelers to punt at the two-minute warning.
- After the punt and a kick-catch interference, Saints start at their 29-yard line. Dalton find Jarvis Landry to the 46-yard line. Dalton is sacked on the next play but finds Juwan Johnson into Steelers’ territory to keep the drive alive. A defenseless player penalty on the Steelers puts the Saints at the 15-yard line. Dalton finds Juwan Johnson for a touchdown on the very next play.
- NO: 10 - PIT: 10
- Steelers start at their 30-yard line after a kickoff return, with 13 seconds to go and run the clock down. The game is tied at 10 at halftime.
- Saints receive the ball and begin at their 34-yard line, but a penalty on Jarvis Landry sets the team back. Saints go three-and-out and punt.
- Steelers take over at their 15-yard line and Kenny Pickett gains 23 yards running up the middle. Steelers get into Saints’ territory and run and end-around with George PIckens to get into the Saints’ red zone. Steelers eventually stall and Matthew Wright misses a field goal.
- Saints take over at their 29-yard line and immediately face a 3rd-and-10 and Andy Dalton finds Chris Olave for a first down. Saints eventually stall and punt. Blake Gillikin booms a 58-yarder, pinning the Steelers inside their 10-yard line.
- Steelers start at their 3-yard line. Pittsburgh gains a couple of first downs to move near midfield. Pickett then finds Deonte Johnson for a deep shot to the Saints’ 20-yard line as the quarter ends.
- Steelers eventually stall and settle for a 33-yard field goal that Matthew Wright converts.
- NO: 10 - PIT: 13
- Saints begin at their 25-yard line. On 3rd-and-5, Jarvis Landry tips a pass by Dalton that is picked off by Damontae Kazee
- Steelers take over at the Saints’ 44-yard line. In two plays, Pittsburgh inside the Saints’ red zone. A pass interference penalty on Paulson Adebo in the end zone sets up first and goal for the Steelers and Pickett runs into the end zone for a touchdown.
- NO: 10 - PIT: 20
- Saints start at their 25-yard line and cannot convert a 3rd-and-1 and are stuffed on 4th-and-1. Steelers take over at the Saints’ 34-yard line.
- Steelers face a 4th-and-6 and elect to kick. Matthew Wright misses a 48-yard attempt.
- Saints take over at their 34-yard line, but on 3rd-and-10, Dalton is picked off by Levi Wallace on a deep throw to Kevin White.
- Steelers take over at their 25-yard line and keep the ball until the two-minute warning. Steelers have another long run to put the ball at the Saints’ 40-yard line as the Saints burn their final timeouts. Steelers gain another first down and close the game out.
- Pittsburgh wins 20-10.
Who or what is most to blame for the Saints’ lost 2022 season?
This poll is closed
Dennis Allen: he is not head coach material
Pete Carmichael: his playcalling is abysmal
Mickey Loomis: he mortgaged the future and now they are paying the price
Andy Dalton, who is a backup at this point
One can never blame a good burger for anything