The New Orleans Saints’ week 6 matchup against the Houston Texans resulted in a 20-13 loss for New Orleans. The Saints had various opportunities to take the lead and even win this game, finding themselves in the red zone nearly constantly. However, they were not able to convert these trips into points, which is what facilitated this loss. With that, we continue our weekly series by choosing one player who broke out in the previous game, and going over why their contributions were so critical to the game.
This week we have a player coming off a recent extension with the Saints, who has proven to be a valuable piece of the DL room so far. This week, we have selected defensive end Carl Granderson as the breakout player of the game, and here’s why:
Consistent impact despite defensive inconsistencies
The New Orleans Saints defense was struggling in the first half this week, giving up chunk plays throughout the game. However, Carl Granderson was one player who could be consistently relied upon the whole game, which has somewhat been the case this season as well as he has performed exceptionally well.
Granderson ended the day with six tackles, two tackles for loss, a sack (see below), five QB hurries, and recorded no penalties. It seemed as though the Saints were able to generate pressure at certain points in the game, however they were not able to complete the process and get a sack. Granderson was only one of two players with a sack this week, the other being Demario Davis.
Carl Granderson on the Saints was really impressive, jumped off the film. He's a stud.— Jeremy Branham (@JeremyBranham) October 17, 2023
This was just one of many play wreckers he had, I like that guy. pic.twitter.com/pH4Ado9B2A
He also had a goal-line stop on 2nd and goal to prevent the Texans from scoring another touchdown, which you can see here:
Overall, there were not a ton of players on the Saints this week who were able to play a complete game and be successful. Carl Granderson was the exception to that, as he seemed to be making plays left and right throughout the game and giving the offense a chance to get back on the field.
With this article, despite a tough loss, there are also some players worth noting who were not chosen for this. While they had good games in their own right, they may also either be already established as successful or just had a slightly lesser impact on the overall game. This week, those players are:
- Pete Werner - LB: Pete Werner had a pretty solid game against Houston, with 5 tackles, a QB hurry, and he only allowed 1 completion on 3 targets. His one downfall was he did have a penalty, and missed two tackles, so overall he was good, not great.
- Khalen Saunders - DT: Khalen Saunders had a solid game in pass rush, despite the stats saying otherwise. Throughout the game, he was consistently breaking through the line or creating opportunities for the other members of the DL. While PFF grades are not the be-all-end-all of a good performance, Saunders had an 82.1 pass rush grade, which is very good.
- Demario Davis - LB: Demario Davis had another solid performance Sunday, with a team-leading seven tackles, as well as two tackles for loss, a pass deflection, and 2 QB hits. On the other hand, he did miss a tackle and was having a tough time trying to stop the run when Dameon Pierce and Devin Singletary made it to the second level. He was statistically good in most areas, but run defense got the better of him this week.