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Armchair Quarterback: Saints vs Buccaneers

Am I the only one that’s ready for a good day offensively?

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints Matthew Hinton-USA TODAY Sports

The New Orleans Saints are officially struggling.

After another disappointing offensive performance, the Saints sit at 2-2 and have yet to score more than 20 points in a game. Now, the fan base is scratching its head trying to figure out why this team is struggling with all the weapons it has.

Change the playcaller

I get it, Pete Carmichael has been here since Sean Payton and he’s a respected member of the coaching staff. Which is great, you need that. However, there’s a reason he never called plays while Payton was here. And now that he’s been the play caller for 21 games, it should be obvious to see why he wasn’t.

Carmichael’s offense is so simple, I feel like a high school team could figure it out. Run, run, pass. Pass, run, pass. Pass, pass, run, I could go on, but I think I made my point. It’s predictable and it’s become easy to stop with film.

Also, the Saints aren’t doing anything with the screen game, which Drew Brees’ offenses made a living off of doing. I understand Derek Carr isn’t Drew, but this may be the best set of playmakers that the Saints have ever had. So, I think it’s time to find a new play caller.

Offensive line improved

Take it for what it’s worth considering they couldn’t get much lower. However, the Saints offensive line showed improvement in the game against Tampa. Carr had more time in the pocket, holes opened in the running game, and Trevor Penning may have had his best game yet. Now, the question becomes “can this group get consistent and continue to play that way?” They have a great opportunity against a weakened defense of the New England Patriots now that Matthew Judon is out. We’ll see how the offense as a whole responds this week.

Should Carr have played?

A lot of people have asked this question since Sunday’s game. Carr went 23/37 for 127 yards. 13 of those 23 completions went to Alvin Kamara, who set a NFL record for least number of yards on 13 or more receptions. Also, Chris Olave had just one catch for four yards.

Carr didn’t look great, but I revert to my original topic here of the offense. If receivers aren’t running more complex or even just different routes to where the defense doesn’t know what’s coming, it’s hard to get open. Use your screen game, go back to attacking the middle of the field, and figure out a way to use your weapons. As for Derek Carr, he probably shouldn’t have played. But he’s not the reason the Saints lost and it’s not close.

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