Saints Have Rushing TroublesSeptember 13th, 2013
The run-stuffing Bucs will meet a Saints team Sunday that’s having big trouble running the ball.
Hopefully, that doesn’t mean Drew Brees will spread out the Bucs and look for whoever Leonard Johnson is covering.
Regardless, the Bucs will at least need to stuff the run and keep the Saints one dimensional, though the Saints couldn’t run last Sunday but still beat the Falcons, so detailed the Times -Picayune.
The Saints had only 78 yards on 29 carries against the Falcons, averaging 2.7 yards per attempt. New Orleans also was stuffed on a fourth-and-inches near midfield by Atlanta. Not exactly a good argument for Payton to remain steadfast in his commitment. Evans said the results have to change for Payton to maintain confidence in the ground game going into Week 2 at Tampa Bay on Sunday.
“When your number is called, you want to step up to the plate and get it done,” Evans said. “We kind of didn’t do that. We didn’t rush for 100 (yards) like our game plan was, even though our number was called numerous times. There’s always plays you wish you had back Week 1.”
Payton split the carries evenly against Atlanta.
Pierre Thomas was by far the most successful of the three running backs with nine carries for 43 yards (4.8 yards per carry). Thomas’ longest run, however, went for only 11 yards.
Darren Sproles only picked up 22 yards on eight carries, but made up for his sluggish rushing totals with six receptions for 88 yards. Meanwhile, Mark Ingram struggled the most with only 11 yards on nine carries.
However you look at it, the Bucs will need turnovers and big plays on defense to win this game. Joe wants to see the Bucs’ true defensive superstars — Gerald McCoy, Darrelle Revis, Dashon Goldson and Lavonte David — and first-round talents Adrian Clayborn and Mark Barron step up. That’s why they’re getting paid.