The New Orleans Saints go to battle against the New England Patriots this Sunday. Both teams are trying to bounce back from disappointing losses a week ago and it should make for a good game come Sunday.
Let’s start with some good news. Both Matthew Judon and Christian Gonzalez are going to be out for this game. The Patriots top corner and pass rusher won’t be on the field this weekend which should give the offense some much needed help.
Patriots’ first-round pick Christian Gonzalez and pass-rushing standout Matthew Judon both are out indefinitely while they seek second opinions on their injuries, per sources. Gonzalez injured his shoulder, Judon suffered a lower bicep tendon tear.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 2, 2023
Two significant losses.
Now for the bad news, this Saints offense has been very bad through four games this season. They’ve had 45 possessions this season, and only four has resulted in touchdowns. In case you were wondering, that is not good. Like not even close to good.
The Saints offense has 45 possessions in four games, and the results have been.... not great. pic.twitter.com/U8J7cQZGo4— John Sigler (@john_siglerr) October 2, 2023
Something has to change with this offense. Whether it’s play calling or execution or both, they have too much talent of that offense to play as bad as they have.
Now for some more bad news. Bill Belichick is a defensive genius and even with Judon and Gonzalez out, the Patriots will defense will still be very good. This is the same Patriots team that has held two very high-powered offenses in the Philadelphia Eagles and Miami Dolphins to 24 or less points in their first two games.
The Saints receivers are going to have to find ways to get open against this Patriots scheme that will throw a whole bunch of new looks at them. Chris Olave, Michael Thomas and Rashid Shaheed were all kept in check this past weekend, and that cannot happen again if they want to win on Sunday.
With Gonzalez out and Jonathan Jones questionable, the receivers have all the opportunity in the world to get open. Carr’s shoulder injury showed a bit on Sunday, but I think with another week of rest, he should be closer to 100% this weekend.
The Patriots have a very stout run defense and have allowed 101 yards per game on the ground this season. Couple that with the Saints rushing struggles, I don’t expect this will be the week the offense finds a way to run the ball efficiently.
The key to this game for the Saints offense will be creative play calling and execution. Luckily, I think the Saints have the playmakers to be efficient on offense, but I don’t know so much about the play calling. Pete Carmichael is going to have to show us something different than he has over the last 21 games, and I just don’t see that happening this weekend. He’s been consistently bland calling plays, and no matter how good your weapons are, they can’t thrive without a good play caller.
If Carmichael somehow turns over a new leaf and starts dialing up some good plays, I think the Saints have a good shot of winning this game, but if not (and I don’t think he will) then the Saints offense will likely struggle once again against the Patriots.
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