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Bears vs. Redskins: Monday Night Football open threadby Wallace Delery on September 24, 2019 at 12:00 am
Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images An NFC matchup in the nation’s capital caps Week 3 in the NFL. Join us here to discuss the game! The Washington Redskins host the Chicago Bears tonight near the nation’s capital. The Bears haven't been great on offense, but they've been dominant on defense. As for the ‘Skins, they've been equally bad at both. Can Washington survive Chicago’s defense? Will Chicago put Washington to rest early in this one? Let’s tune in and find out! Chicago Bears at Washington Redskins FedEx Field - Landover, Maryland Kickoff - 5:15pm PST / 7:15pm CST / 8:15pm EST Network - ESPN Enjoy the game with the CSC family and join the thread below!
Game balls from the Saints out-Seahawking of Seattleby BobRose on September 23, 2019 at 7:09 pm
Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images The Saints prevail in a tough road venue, improving to 2-1 with an impressive team effort. The New Orleans Saints won a game without Drew Brees at quarterback for the first time since a November 27, 2005 victory over the New York Jets. The Saints went into Seattle without their injured quarterback on Sunday afternoon, one of the league's toughest venues to play, and won 33-27 in a game that wasn't as close as the final score. New Orleans won the game in a way that the Seahawks usually do, by playing hard-nosed on both sides of the ball and by making big plays defensively and on special teams. The Saints defense got the game off to a good start for the visitors by forcing a Seahawks punt after a 3-and-out on the opening drive. The Saints Deonte Harris then returned the punt 53 yards for a touchdown and a quick 7-0 lead. A few offensive penalties, which continue to be a problem, short circuited a couple drives, but the defense came up with a big play to keep momentum. Eli Apple stripped Seattle's Chris Carson of the football, which safety Vonn Bell returned for a 33-yd. score and a 13-7 lead after a Seattle score. Saints quarterback Teddy Bridgewater was smart, if not spectacular, with the football in throwing 2 touchdowns. Bridgewater led two key touchdown drives at the end of the first half and to start the second to extend the New Orleans lead to 27-7, and the defense held on through the fourth to preserve the big win. Here are some of the top performers from a Saints victory that some found surprising. Alvin Kamara Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images Kamara was expected to be an even bigger part of the game plan with Brees out, and the third year back delivered in All-Pro fashion. Kamara totaled 161 offensive yards and scored twice, including 9 receptions for 92 yards . He accounted for 61% of the Saints offensive production, frustrating the Seattle defense on seemingly every play by fighting through tackles for key extra yardage and showcasing his exceptional balance and vision. Ryan Ramczyk and Terron Armstead Photo by Jeff Halstead/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images The Saints offensive line rebounded from a poor performance last week against the Rams by returning to form against a formidable Seahawks front. Bridgewater was not sacked and rarely hit, while the line paved the way for key pickups on the ground in short yardage situations. Tackles Armstead and Ramczyk were particularly impressive, setting the edge for Kamara and opening up lanes on a number of screen and swing passes. Thomas Morstead Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images The veteran punter consistently put the Seahawks in a hole with his booming kicks and accurate placement, allowing the Saints to have a significant advantage in field position throughout the game. Morstead averaged 54 yards on his six punts, which included a 64-yd. bomb, and pinned Seattle inside their own 10-yd. line multiple times. He was a vital weapon in the field position battle, allowing the Saints to stay within their offensive game plan. Demario Davis Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images Davis took over the pregame speech from Brees to start the game, then proceeded to show why he is a key emotional leader for his squad. He finished with 9 tackles and a quarterback hit. Davis flushed Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson out of the pocket on a few occasions, something that the Saints defense did several times in the game. More importantly, Davis was responsible for a handful of key stops in short yardage opportunities, helping his defense hold the Seahawks to just 6-18 in 3rd or 4th down situations. Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images Coach Sean Payton and defensive coordinator Dennis Allen each had outstanding game plans, and the team's stars made big plays when most needed. Next up for the now 2-1 Saints is a home battle against the Dallas Cowboys. New Orleans will of course still be without the injured Brees, but this strong team effort should dispel many of the naysayers who were quick to discount the championship chances of this still talented roster.
Seahawks vs Saints: Week 3 quick observationsby Don Kellum on September 23, 2019 at 2:00 pm
Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports No Brees, no problem. Saints take care of business in Seattle and come home 2-1. Without their future Hall of Famer at quarterback, the Saints were able to secure their first win in Seattle since 2007, and their first victory without any QB not named Brees at the helm since 2005. While its just one game there are still plenty of positives to take from the team’s performance. Here are some quick observations: Special Teams Thomas freaking Morstead. What a player. He had two punts downed inside the 5-yard line and four overall inside the 20 that really helped the defense out. His first such punt landed in the perfect spot and bounced out of bounds at the 2-yard line. Justin Hardee Sr. was responsible for the other great punt, as he continues to be a critical playmaker on that unit. Speaking of punting, the team scored its first touchdown on a punt return since 2015 when Marcus Murphy did it his rookie year. Deonte Harris picked up right where he left off in college with his 53-yard return that swung the momentum to the Saints favor early in the game. But Harris isn’t the only one that deserves credit on that play. The Deonte Harris touchdown return was one thing, but how about J.T. Gray and Dwayne Washington (I believe) blocking the gunner the ENTIRE play https://t.co/g7VCqHFtyl— John Hendrix (@JohnJHendrix) September 23, 2019 Harris is lucky to have made that play so early. He would later muff a punt that the Seahawks recovered late in the game. Fumbles is something that Sean Payton has no patience for, but Harris was able to break even and hopefully this is something he won’t make a habit of. Wil Lutz also missed his first extra point attempt since week 5 last year. Fortunately, that one point didn’t loom large in this game and he was perfect on his other three attempts. This unit continues to be an unspoken strength of this team and will need to continue to perform at an elite level to help offset the loss of Brees. Teddy two gloves As was expected, Bridgewater had a much better game this week than he did coming off the bench against the Rams. He went 19 of 27 for a Brees-like 70% completion percentage. His two touchdown passes were more due to scheme than pure talent, but he did what he needed to for most of the game. The gameplan was designed to get the ball to the offensive playmakers, and he was able to move the ball efficiently on quick, short passes. Bridgewater rarely took any deep shots, only attempting four deeper than 10 yards. NFL Next Gen Stats At times he looked uncomfortable in the pocket and didn’t seem to always set his feet before throwing. This lead to a few inaccurate passes, with two nearly being intercepted. One of which could have gone for a touchdown the other way. Getting back into a regular routine and being able to prepare and play at home should help Bridgewater this week. He got the first one out of the way, so some of his nervousness should be eased now. Pass Rush The stat sheet may not show it, but the defensive line put pressure on Russell Wilson all day. Against most other quarterbacks these pressures would have turned into sacks, but Wilson isn’t a typical quarterback and is one of the hardest to bring down. Dennis Allen continues to use the depth of talent he has on the line to create pressure on opposing quarterbacks which only helps the secondary as they try to get back to last year’s consistency. Confidence This team came into the season once again as a Super Bowl favorite. But after the injury to Drew Brees and the ugly loss last week against the Los Angeles Rams, many analysts and odds-makers began to doubt this team. This Sunday the Saints proved they could win a game without Brees and should look more confident next week at home against the Cowboys.
3 ups and 1 down from yesterday’s win over the Seahawksby Chris Dunnells on September 23, 2019 at 1:00 pm
Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images Three “Ups” and one “Down” from the game. Maybe the Who Dat Nation doesn’t need to panic just yet after all. It was still a roller coast of a game, with plenty of “Ups” and “Downs” along the way, though. Here are a few that stood out: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports Up: Alvin Kamara When the New Orleans Saints lost Drew Brees to injury, you knew they were going to have to lean on Alvin Kamara if they wanted any hope of winning games in Brees’s absence. And lean on Kamara they did. In Week 3, Alvin Kamara finished with 69 rushing yards (leading the team in rushing), 92 receiving yards (leading the team in receiving), and two scores. In the home of the infamous BeastMode run from Marshawn Lynch, Kamara had himself mini-BeastMode runs where he seemingly bounced off or ran through tacklers to get positive yards on every attempt. He’s something special. Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports Up: Officiating If we’re going to point out when the NFL officials have bad games, we need to also recognize when they have a good one too. There were a few ticky-tacky pass interference or holding calls that could have gone either way, but you expect those issues every game. But for what felt like the first time in a long time, it didn’t feel as if the Saints were actively having to play not just against the team on the other side of the football, but the zebras too. Of note, the referees properly let a questionable fumble call play through which the Saints returned for a touchdown. Upon further review, the call stood, but it was a stark contrast from the Week 2 blunder against the Rams. Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports Down: Penalties There were a lot of considerations for a possible down this week. Deante Harris muffed a punt, but he also returned one for a score. The defense gave up huge plays, but also scored a touchdown and made key stops on fourth down. The Saints cornerbacks gave up contested catches, but also had several passes broken up. However, if we’re taking something away from this game to fix, it would definitely be the sloppy play that resulted in numerous penalties - especially on offense. Granted, playing on the road in Seattle is always tough for opposing offenses, but when you’re already missing Drew Brees, you can’t afford to shoot yourself in the foot with holdings, false starts, or illegal blocks. Hopefully this gets cleaned up at home next week. Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images Up: Thomas Morstead Thomas Morstead is the best punter in the NFL. His ability to consistently pin teams within their own ten yard line is absolutely uncanny. When the Saints needed Morstead to flip field position, Morstead performed like the Pro Bowler he is and his performance is what helped keep the Saints in the game. (Special honorable mention “Up” goes to the assist from Pete Carroll. Yo, do you not even clock manage, bro?)
Beignets and Café au Lait: Saints Set the Tone for Brees-less Stretchby JR Ella on September 23, 2019 at 11:00 am
Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports Brees-less in Seattle, Saints show the NFL that they won’t go down without a fight Good morning Y’all As always, for our novice readers or non-New Orleanians, welcome! Let’s start with some definitions: Beignets (English: /bɛnˈjeɪ/; French: [bɛɲɛ], ben-YAY literally bump) are distinctly New Orleans, a delicacy intimately connected to the city’s rich French heritage. Best enjoyed heavily powdered with sugar. Café au lait (/ˌkæfeɪ oʊ ˈleɪ, kæˌfeɪ, kə-/; French: [kafe olɛ]; French for “coffee with milk”) is a delicious New Orleans way to start your day. This is your “After-Saints-Game” breakfast, where we talk about the state of the Black and Gold, we debate the goings-on in the NFC South, and paint the playoff picture in the NFC up to this point of the season. So, sit back, take a bite and a sip while your brain slowly wakes up, and let’s catch up on some football. * What Just Happened? · They say that the NFL is a week-to-week league, and they are right! Last week in Los Angeles, the sky seemed to be falling. Drew Brees got hurt, New Orleans had 11 penalties and looked in disarray in a 27-9 loss to the Rams. Looming was a daunting challenge against the Seattle Seahawks at Century Link Field. During the week, head coach Sean Payton and Saints players said all the right things: they would rally around Teddy Bridgewater, they relished the opportunity to show that the New Orleans Saints were not actually the Drew Brees Saints. And then yesterday in Seattle, the Saints did their talking on the field with an exhilarating 33-27 victory against the Seahawks. · The last time the Saints won a game in Seattle was October 14, 2007, in just the second year of the Brees/Payton era. That Sunday night, the 0-4 Saints defeated the Matt Hasselbeck-led Seahawks 28-17. Drew Brees had two touchdowns passes, one to tight end Eric Johnson and one to wide receiver Marques Colston. It was the first of four consecutive wins, in what was an otherwise unmemorable year. · In the Brees/Payton era, the Saints had been 0-3 in games that Drew Brees does not start. All three losses, interestingly, had been to the Carolina Panthers, while only one of those games was missed by Brees due to injury. * Five Numbers...That Don’t Lie · 52: The net punting average for Saints’ punter Thomas Morstead yesterday in Seattle, which is outstanding. Morstead punted six times, with a long of 64 yards. He consistently pinned the Seahawks inside their red zone and forced Seattle to go the distance to score. A big day for The Leg. · 25. The number of touches by Saints’ running back Alvin Kamara. The third year running back had nine receptions (on 10 targets) for 92 yards and one touchdown, while he rushed 16 times for 69 yards (4.3 yards-per-rush) and a touchdown on the ground. And though they’re not lying, the numbers do not tell the whole story of Kamara’s game yesterday: he refused to be tackled and basically carried the Saints’ offense in a tough road environment. Just exceptional. · 15: The Seattle Seahawks were 15-0 at Century Link Field in September since 2010, the year Pete Carroll took the job. In fact, the Seahawks were the only unbeaten NFL team in September during that span. The Seahawks are now 15-1 in September since 2010, which further emphasize how unlikely and how massive yesterday’s Saints win was. · 1: When rookie returner Deonte Harris returned a punt for the Saints’ first touchdown of the game, it was also the first punt return for a touchdown in the NFL this season. The Saints have high hopes for the speedy Harris, who was an undrafted free agent out of Assumption College in Worcester, Mass. If he could just avoid fumbling the ball when New Orleans is about to put the game to bed, he would save Saints fans a lot of heart medication bills. · 0: The number of sacks by the Saints’ defense yesterday. Coming into Sunday, the Saints were atop the league in sacks, after a six sacks night against the Texans in the season opener and a three-sack effort against the Rams last Sunday. Enter “Master of Elusiveness” Russell Wilson, who basically snatched several sure-fire sacks out of the paws of several Saints pass rushers. It doesn’t get any easier next week with the bulldozer that is Dak Prescott next in line. * Beignets and Café au Lait Awards · Fresh Beignets with Hot Coffee: Alvin Kamara. I have known for a while now, as have we all, that Alvin Kamara is a bona fide running back in the NFL. And yet, he still finds way to amaze: the incredible balance, the shiftiness, the aggression on his runs, for a player that doesn’t look as imposing physically as his play does on the field. He gets all the beignets today. · Stale Beignets with Old Coffee: Marshon Lattimore. What happened to Shornp2? He has been getting roasted on a regular basis. I am quickly running out of excuse for the Saints’ talented cornerback. Look, Lattimore is playing and playing hard. Also, being a cornerback on an island is a tough task. Maybe he set the bar too high for himself in 2017? Whatever the case, opposing quarterbacks do not think twice about throwing Lattimore’s way anymore. I’m just going to invite us all to say some Voodoo prayers that he returns to his rookie form. * What’s Next? · The Saints will play the hated very much disliked Dallas Cowboys (3-0) on Sunday night in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Dallas has looked good so far this season, scoring over 30 points in all three games so far this year. The Cowboys have also played the New York Giants (1-2), Washington Redskins (0-2) and the shamelessly tanking Miami Dolphins (0-3). Thus, Dallas’ first real test will be on Sunday night in New Orleans, in front of a raucous Superdome crowd ready for some revenge from last year’s 13-10 loss in Jerry World. * Super Bowl Odds Following their win in Seattle, according to fivethirthyeight.com, the Saints now have the fifth-best odds of winning the Super Bowl at 6%, behind the Chiefs (20%), Patriots (19%), Rams (12%) and Cowboys (8%). New Orleans has the best odds to win the NFC South at 62%, followed by the Falcons (20%), Panthers (11%) and Bucs (6%). * Hey, how come you’re still here? Get some work done! Unless you’re still drunk from celebrating yesterday’s triumph in Seattle, in which case, carry on.