The Good: Defense
Seems like I’ve been saying this a lot this season but once again, the defense was the main reason this game was close throughout. They held the Houston Texans to just 3 points in the second half, and held rookie start quarterback C.J. Stroud to under 50% completion and fewer than 200 yards and picked him off for the first time this season. The defense forced the Texans to punt on their final three drives of the game, and the game would have been tied of the offense could have scored a touchdown on any of their ensuing drives. Unfortunately, it didn’t happen, but once again the New Orleans Saints defense was stellar on Sunday.
The Bad: Playcalling
Again, it seems like we’ve heard this one too many times this year. On the Saints final drive, they elected to throw four straight fades on the sideline in their attempt to score a game tying touchdown, all of which failed of course. Couple this with the fact that the offense has been incredibly lackluster despite featuring multiple Pro Bowlers and you have to look at the coaches. A change needs to be made, and quick.
The Ugly: Not finishing drives
The Saints final three drives of the game ended in a missed field goal, a turnover on downs, and an interception. All of these drives could have potentially tied the game with a touchdown. Blake Grupe missed a kick earlier in the first quarter as well, so if he had been able to convert both of the kicks that he had missed earlier, the Saints would have been in a position on their final drive to just need a field goal for the win rather than a touchdown for the tie. Failing to finish this many drives is something you simply cannot do in the NFL and expect to win games.
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