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Saints Looking to Tackle Falcons Again

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Saints looking to tackle Falcons again Run-stopping plan worked in first game Friday, November 24, 2006 By Mike Triplett, Times-Picayune The Saints know how to beat the Atlanta Falcons. Nine weeks ago, they created the blueprint for shutting down the ...

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Old 11-24-2006, 06:41 AM   #1
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Saints Looking to Tackle Falcons Again

Saints looking to tackle Falcons again
Run-stopping plan worked in first game


Friday, November 24, 2006
By Mike Triplett, Times-Picayune




The Saints know how to beat the Atlanta Falcons.

Nine weeks ago, they created the blueprint for shutting down the NFL's top-ranked rushing offense in a 23-3 victory over Atlanta in the Superdome.

They sacked quarterback Michael Vick five times, held tailback Warrick Dunn to a season-low 44 rushing yards and held the Falcons to a total of 229 net yards.


But the Saints have learned the hard way in recent weeks that it takes more than just good game-planning to win. They have been burned by a handful of defensive breakdowns in back-to-back losses to Pittsburgh and Cincinnati.

That's a trend they would love to stop this week, especially against Vick, who looms as one of the league's most dangerous big-play threats.

"Whatever we did (last time), did work," linebacker Scott Fujita said. "But at the same time, whenever the ball's in his hands, anything can happen. It's not going to be easy by any means."

"I love it," defensive end Charles Grant said of the twice-annual meetings against Vick and the rival Falcons. "Exciting guy. A great player, man. If he gets his guys catching the ball, it'll be a good game down there. So we've got to go in with the mentality that we're not going to let that happen."

The Saints' defense has struggled in the past two games -- because of the big plays they've given up and their inability to make big plays. But Coach Sean Payton says it just needs a little fine-tuning, not a major overhaul.

Last week, the Saints were tied at 10 in the fourth quarter with the high-powered Bengals before two breakdowns led to two quick scores for Cincinnati.

"I thought, by and large, when I looked at defensive film, we had a good plan trying to keep the ball in front of us," Payton said. "Looking at the way it was at halftime, I thought the plan was good. Now, obviously, the plan went awry.


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