The New Orleans Saints kick off their last preseason game against the Los Angeles Chargers with a good amount of starts getting their first action. Jameis Winston, Alvin Kamara, Jarvis Landry, Cam Jordan, and Tyrann Mathieu headline some of the Saints playing in this game.
Among the players that did not play tonight due to injury were Mike Thomas, Alontae Taylor, Marcus Davenport, Pete Werner, Adam Trautman, Taysom Hill, and Chase Hansen.
Jameis Winston and the Saints offense came out first and couldn't have impressed more. Dennis Allen said he wanted a 10-play, 75-yard TD drive the first series, well they delivered with a 9-play, 75-yard drive. Winston was SHARP, he finished his day with 4-4, 59 yards with a few darts to Jarvis Landry and Chris Olave in one drive. Penning was carted off the field with an ankle injury after the drive.
The Saints’ defense was up next, they of course started with a three and out with a big stop by Tyrann Mathieu and a series ending sack by DeMario Davis. Marcus Maye had an impressive 2nd drive with a couple of big hits near the goal line.
Andy Dalton came in next and also looked very sharp, leading the Saints offense to another TD in his first drive. The drive was capped off by another Mark Ingram TD.
The play of the day was an incomplete pass to Tre’Quan Smith that got bounced and tipped to Marquez Callaway for a touchdown, the play was reviewed and confirmed a catch, but the ref blew the whistle while Callaway was running to the end zone. The Saints ended up not scoring on the drive. The Saints may be in the preseason, but the NFL officials are in midseason form.
Andy Dalton finished up his day perfect as well 5-5 for 73 yards. Book replaced Dalton late in the 2nd quarter.
Chase Daniel diced up the Saints’ second unit defense adding 10 points to the board before the half. Lutz nailed a field goal at the end of the half to put the Saints up 17-10.
To open up the half Justin Evans made a huge play to punch the ball out and his fellow safety Daniel Sorenson scooped the ball. Big plays for both safeties who are making a statement to make the roster. The Saints converted turnover to points, Book hits camp standout, Kirk Merritt, for a nine-yard score. Saints lead 24-10 after an impressive couple of series. Justin Evans was impressive in the 2nd half of this game and Evans applied a big hit that caused an incomplete pass and the Chargers had to punt.
Kirk Merritt has had a few plays throughout the 2nd half that flash, he’s making a statement to make the roster as a WR/RB/KR.
Ian Book and co did a great job closing out this game, Kirk Merritt, Dai’Jean Dixon, and Abram Smith all made solid plays down the stretch to seal the W for the Saints.
Instant Podcast reaction:
Saints Win!!! 27-10