Despite a tough season for the New Orleans Saints, there has been a few bright spots worth noting. One of these is Cam Jordan, and his climb to set the new Saints’ franchise record for career sacks. This has been something that is very rarely seen, and when it does happen it is worth praising that player for this accolade. In this article, we will go over how Cam got to this point throughout his career, recapping his excellent performance today to break the record, his quotes from the post-game press conference regarding this statistic, and a small statement from myself regarding the achievement.
115.5 sacks - 12 seasons in the making
Cam Jordan is a player that started off his career relatively slow, especially for a late first-round pick. After being selected in round 1 at pick 24 in the 2011 NFL Draft, Jordan started 15 of 16 games his rookie year, yet only amassed 1 sack, along with 31 tackles, 4 QB hits, 2 tackles for loss, and 4 pass deflections. Despite this somewhat underwhelming beginning, Cam was able to develop his game throughout his first full NFL offseason and came back the next season putting up 8 sacks with 67 tackles, 13 QB hits, 8 tackles for loss, 3 forced fumbles, and 3 pass deflections while starting all 16 games for the Saints.
This level of production would only increase each year from his rookie season to year 3, making his first Pro Bowl in the 2013-2014 season and grabbing 12.5 sacks with a whopping 23 QB hits, 2 more forced fumbles, and 4 more pass deflections. From then on out, he would only miss the pro bowl twice in the next 8 seasons and bring together one of the most prolific stretches of consecutive games played in NFL history, 172 games. He would not miss a game from 2012 through week 13 of the 2021 season, and finally only missed his first due to Covid-19 in week 14, 2021.
To recap his career statistically and achievement-wise from 2014 onwards, here is a short summary:
- 2014: 16 games started, 7.5 sacks, 51 tackles, 10 QB hits, 5 pass deflections, 1 interception, 8 tackles for loss
- 2015: 16 games started, 10.0 sacks, 45 tackles, 20 QB hits, 5 pass deflections, 1 forced fumble, 15 tackles for loss, pro bowl
- 2016: 16 games started, 7.5 sacks, 58 tackles, 24 QB hits, 6 pass deflections, 1 forced fumble, 17 tackles for loss
- 2017: 16 games started, 13 sacks, 62 tackles, 28 QB hits, 11 pass deflections, 2 forced fumbles, 1 interception, 17 tackles for loss, pro bowl, all-pro first team, 4th in AP DPOY voting
- 2018: 16 games started, 12 sacks, 49 tackles, 21 QB hits, 6 pass deflections, 1 forced fumble, all-pro second team, pro bowl
- 2019: 16 games started, 15.5 sacks, 53 tackles, 25 QB hits, 3 pass deflections, 1 fumble recovery, all-pro second team, pro bowl
- 2020: 16 games started, 7.5 sacks, 51 tackles, 16 QB hits, 3 pass deflections, 1 forced fumble, pro bowl.
- 2021: 16 games started (out of a now 17-game season), 12.5 sacks, 59 tackles, 22 QB hits, 6 pass deflections, 2 forced fumbles, pro bowl.
- 2022 (1 game remaining): 15 games started (can be presumed to start 16 out of 17 with a week 18 start), 8.5 sacks, 59 tackles, 14 QB hits, 2 pass deflections, 1 forced fumble, breaks Saints’ all-time career sack record.
Hitting the Milestone with a strong performance
Cam Jordan did not get this record on the back of a 0.5 or 1 sack day, but rather on the back of a 3-sack performance against one of the best offensive lines in the NFL. Cam would get his first sack of the day in the 2nd quarter with 12:12 remaining, bringing down Gardner Minshew right at the line of scrimmage. He would go on to get his second sack of the day, and the half, with 34 seconds left in the 2nd quarter, bringing Minshew down for a loss of 5 yards. Finally, he would get his last sack of the day on the last drive for the Philadelphia Eagles, after Minshew fumbled, recovered, and then was sacked.
This was a vintage Cam Jordan performance, which we seem to get quite often each season around this time of year. If you are going to start breaking records, this is the way to do it. Jordan surpassed another Saints legend, Rickey Jackson, for this record, who has 115 career total sacks, 0.5 less than Cam now.
Cam Jordan and Dennis Allen postgame press conferences
Both Cam Jordan and head coach Dennis Allen spoke about this record and its meaning to them in the post-game press conference, links to these can be found below:
What this means to me as a fan
As someone who has had the pleasure of watching the large majority of Cam Jordan’s snaps, this has been a long-time coming to put it simply. Cam has always had the tenacity of some of the greatest players in league history and frankly should end up in Canton, Ohio when he decides his career is over. The production of a player such as Jordan in this half of his career is unthinkable, and he is still outdoing himself with the possibility of 10 sacks this season if he gets 1.5 next week. We saw two of the most prolific edge rushers ever play late into their 30s in an extremely physical era, with Bruce Smith playing through his age 40 season, and Reggie White returning for his age 39 season. Will Cam choose to do this? Who knows. All I know is that we may only witness this type of greatness a few times in our lifetime, and we should enjoy it.
Thank you, Cam, from the fanbase and from Canal Street Chronicles, for making the tough seasons worth watching and the great seasons even more exciting. I look forward to the continuation of your career and seeing you surpass even more people near the top of the all-time sacks list. Keep climbing the levelz.