Is it Over for the Saints?
Yeah, About that…
We may still have nine games left before the NFL regular season comes to an end, but for all intents and purposes, the 2008 season is over for the Saints. Look no further than Sunday’s 30-7 beatdown at the hands of the Carolina Panthers as the latest example.
But it’s not just the beatdown itself that should have “Who Dat nation” worried. The way Sunday’s loss went down, is also cause for concern.
Just one week off the best performance of his career where he completed his first 16 passes and finished 26-30 for 320 yards and had three touchdowns, Drew Brees finished Sunday’s loss without finding a target in the endzone. The first time that’s happened in seven games dating back to last season. By the way, the Saints loss that game too. But Brees’ 21-39, 231 yard performance is just a microcosm of what’s wrong with the Saints. In a word, INCONSISTENCY! The black and gold has yet to put together back to back wins this season. Now sure going win, loss, win, loss the rest of the season would get the Saints to an 8-8 finish, but at the rate the NFC is going this year, a .500 record, won’t be enough to get the boys to the post season. Maybe those nuns I see before home games, need to give the team stronger blessings!
The path to the post season only gets rougher for Saints from here (at least it’ll be rough for an inconsistent team who’s consistently injured).
Next Sunday the Saints are at “home” in London against the 3-4 Chargers. Luckily for the Saints, San Diego seems to be just as inconsistent as they are so that should be a “W”. But after the bye New Orleans’ will play four division games (and unlike in years past the 4-2 Falcons are no longer a “gimme” win). They’ll go to 4-3 Chicago. And their first game back at the Superdome will be against Green Bay. And I don’t know if you’ve paid much attention to the Packers since Brett Favre left, but Aaron Rodgers is ballin’! Of their final eight games, the Saints of right now only seem poised to win at Kansas City and at Detroit, but considering they’re 0-3 on the road this season, that’s not guaranteed either!
But for all the Saints inconsistencies on the field, at least their consistent in one area–injuries! Marques Colston (thumb) and Jeremy Shockey (sports hernia)were ineffective in their returns to the field. After the game Colston said he wasn’t in sync with the offense and Shockey aggravated the injury that kept him out of three games, on the first play of the game. Running back Reggie Bush also left Sunday’s game with a torn meniscus in his left knee. He underwent arthroscopic surgery Monday and is expected to miss two to four weeks. Bush didn’t make the trip to London.
And without Bush, aka Sean Payton’s everything, the offense has an uphill battle. The Saints are already inept at running the football so I shudder to think what they’ll look like without the guy who’s gotten the majority of the team’s carries this season. Expect to see a lot of nickel packages from opposing defenses. It should also be noted, the three aformentioned players are, when healthy, the Saints top offensive weapons.
So Saints fans, you may want to call your peeps on the Northside of Chicago and start practicing the motto that has been tried and true in tough times…’Wait ’til next year’….I’m just sayin’.