The Big Easy lived up to its name on Monday night, at least in the world of football. The New Orleans Saints and Miami Dolphins both entered the final week four contest undefeated, but the Saints were able to dominate defensively and offensively as they cruised to a 38-17 victory in the cross-conference showdown.
Drew Brees and the offense was as magnificent as the world has come to expect whenever he takes the field. Without a clear running back, Brees was once again able to light up the scoreboard and box score. A massive fantasy football day has become the norm for Brees, who connected with tight end Jimmy Graham for two touchdowns on the night.
When a professional team manages just 68 yards rushing on 24 carries, one would not typically think they were successful on the night. However, Brees ignored the lack of rushing success and instead passed for 413 yards and four scores as the Saints easily dismantled the vaunted Dolphins defense.
On the other side of the ball, the surprising Saints defense continued to establish itself as a legitimate top ten unit, keeping Ryan Tannehill in check and limiting a previously undefeated opponent to just 17 points.
Toss in some huge impact plays, like three interceptions and a fumble recovery, and the level this defense is playing at becomes easily apparent.
The intensity of this defense seems to be up this year with the return of coach Sean Payton, especially in the front seven. Four sacks on the night, and they came at pivotal times, increasing the Saints momentum and sparking their lightning fast second half start.
13.75 points against per game is an astonishingly good total for this Saints defense. When an offense is as prolific as the Saints, typically the defense will give up more points than one with a conservative offense. Quick scoring contributes to this usual trend, but New Orleans has been able to keep up the intensity and avoid the fatigue that so often plagues such a defense.
At 4-0 New Orleans looks to be back to its previous form after a down season in which Payton was suspended for the entire year in 2012. The swagger is back in the Big Easy, and they look to continue to light up the scoreboard with a lights out offense and a new, hard nosed defense to compliment.
Senior Sports Editor
The Guardian Express
Source 1 2 3