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Saints power rankings: Week 15

Saints come out of bye week looking to move up

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NFL: DEC 05 Saints at Buccaneers Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

ESPN - #26 (From #25)

The Saints simply haven’t been good in all three phases of the game, and their offense has struggled badly at times to put up points. The more surprising stat is their defense, which has fallen from a yearly top-five unit to middle of the road, mostly due to a once-stout run defense not being as good as it was when Dennis Allen was the D-coordinator instead of the head coach. — Katherine Terrell

USA Today - #26 (From #28)

Triple-double? TE Taysom Hill is the only player in the Super Bowl era with at least nine touchdowns via pass, reception and rush. With one more TD throw and catch, Hill can become the NFL’s version of Russell Westbrook.

CBS - #26 (From #25)

They have four games left, and they are pretty much playing out the string. This has not been a good season for first-year coach Dennis Allen.

NFL - #27 (From #26)

The Saints have already guaranteed their first losing season since 2016. The struggles will surely prompt big internal questions for the organization moving forward — even as the unsightly nature of the NFC South as a whole keeps New Orleans (barely) alive in the division race. Dennis Allen might be coaching for his job in the final four weeks of the season. Then there’s the quarterback position: Jameis Winston and Taysom Hill were previously identified as rightful successors to Drew Brees, but now both are on the bench in favor of Andy Dalton — now several years deep into the “veteran wanderer” portion of his NFL life. Everything in the league starts with stability at coach and QB — the Saints are wobbling in both categories.

New Orleans Saints v Tampa Bay Buccaneers Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images

Bleacher Report - #27 (From #26)

For many years under Sean Payton and Drew Brees, the New Orleans Saints enjoyed great success—including the franchise’s only championship. Payton and Brees are gone now—and so is the success.

Head coach Dennis Allen has struggled in his first season, and those struggles aren’t new to him—Allen’s .245 winning percentage as head coach of the Raiders and Saints is…not good. In the opinion of John Sigler of Saints Wire, at least some of the problem is that in a day and age when more and more coaches are aggressive on 4th-and-short, Allen has a distressing tendency to play it safe.

“Allen has kicked field goals on more short-yardage situations (fourth down with 1 or 2 yards to go) while tied or leading through just 13 games (5 times) than his predecessor Sean Payton did across three full seasons (3 times). The Saints are tied for the second-fewest fourth down conversion attempts (8) on the year so far. They rank second-highest in field goals and punts inside opposing territory. He’s the least-aggressive coach in the NFL, and New Orleans’ record reflects the consequences of that.”

Per Sigler, the Saints also lead the league in presnap penalties on offense, leading to speculation that Allen’s first season as coach in New Orleans could also be his last.

PFT - #29 (From #28)

If they hadn’t choked last Monday night, they’d be in great shape right now.

Sporting News - #29 (From #28)

The Saints were off to figure out how they want to finish up offensively under Andy Dalton. There are big changes in store for that side and the injury-marred defense needs a few upgrades, too.

Average ranking: 27 (From 27)

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