However, to begin the game the Saints were on what looked like to be the wrong side of things letting up multiple explosive plays that lead to touchdowns. After making some adjustments on defense, the team pulled it together and never let off the gas.
Offensively, the team undoubtedly put together their best performance of the season. Through the air QB Derek Carr, lit up Atlanta’s secondary with help from his playmakers firing in 4 touchdowns on the day while completing 22/28 passes for 264 yards. What’s even more impressive is that he was able to spread the wealth hitting 6 receivers for at least 3 completions each. Of those receivers, the biggest plays came from the Saints top 3 wide-outs. WR’s Chris Olave, Rashid Shaheed and A.T. Perry each went over 50 yards and scored a touchdown/s on the day. In terms of the running game, the team got a huge jolt of energy from their 3rd round rookie RB Kendre Miller who made his presence known with some explosive and elusive running style. He looks like a guy the Saints definitely need on the field next year, barring another injury plagued season. He would finished the day with 13 carries 73 yards and a touchdown. Mr.Everything Taysom Hill also brought some life to the running game as well totaling 51 yards on only 6 carries. A very effective day on the ground.
Defensively, the Saints struggled to minimize explosive plays in the first quarter with coverage busts by CB Alontae Taylor. However, when the team adjusted Atlanta wasn’t able to get anything going and when they did, they could never finish. Part of thing was the Saints ability to stop the run against the Falcons, something they struggled with mightily in their first meeting. Rookie RB Bijan Robinson carried the ball 11 times for only 28 yards. Aside from his long TD catch, he was pretty much a non factor in this game. This forced Atlanta to push the ball through the air but the Saints back end kept everything in front of them, while also forcing a few turnovers along the way. S Tyrann Mathieu and CB Alontae Taylor came up with the game’s only interceptions and the Saints were able to recover a botched snap by Atlanta. These all led to points for New Orleans.
Aside from the antics after the game, the team put on a heck of a performance to end the year. Sadly, it wasn’t where we all thought the team was going to at this time but it is always good to end on a high note. Hope to see you guys later this off-season!