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Armchair Quarterback: Saints vs. Panthers

The New Orleans Saints pick up a key NFC South win.

NFL: SEP 18 Saints at Panthers Photo by David Jensen/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Black and Gold is 2-0 for the first time since 2013.

The New Orleans Saints went on the road to play the Carolina Panthers and picked up a 20-17 victory to start the season with an NFC South win early on in the year.

The resurgence of Tony Jones Jr. in this contest was also a ton of fun to watch. Let’s get into what stood out from the primetime win.

New Orleans Saints v Carolina Panthers Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

Carr has to be better

There’s really no way to sugarcoat this if you’re the Saints. Derek Carr wasn’t at his best Monday night. He made poor decisions, missed on several throws, and just looked off. Now there were moments where he shined, but overall, you have to see more out of him. The thing that disappointed me the most was the lack of touchdowns when you were playing an injured secondary. We’ll get to the offensive line as well because they didn’t do Carr any favors.

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Receivers continue to impress

Chris Olave, Rashid Shaheed, and Michael Thomas all had nice games again against the Carolina Panthers Monday night despite the woes of their passing game. Olave made one of the best catches in recent memory, Shaheed won another long ball, and MT was the featured receiver of the game plan, and he was effective. The Saints have given Derek Carr plenty to work with, and you’re now seeing that with a competent quarterback, these playmakers can shine, and Pete Carmichael’s may not be so bad after all.

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Offensive line struggled all night

This group came into 2023 with high expectations. Ryan Ramcyzk is the leader with Erik McCoy and Cesar Ruiz being the newly proven stars and Trevor Penning the young pupil with all the hype. However, through two games, the offensive line may be the worst spot on the team.

This group lacks pass protection, they have struggled to open up holes for Jamaal Williams, and there have been 8 sacks through two games. Not to mention that your running backs combine to average less than 3 yards per carry so far on the season.

Obviously, there are new pieces and things to shore up including the chemistry, but once Kamara comes back along with Kendre Miller and Williams, this group needs to be better.

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