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saint5221 09-09-2003 08:37 AM

Jim Henderson Report Saints look like same club that finishe

Commentary: Saints look like same club that finished last season

12:08 PM CDT on Monday, September 8, 2003

Jim Henderson / WWL-TV Sports Director

I was a little spooked by the team’s play in preseason and the thought, expressed by some of the players, that they’d be able to turn off a light switch and make all of the bad things disappear when the regular season started. This team is still making the same mistakes it made down the stretch last season when they finished so abysmally. The defense hardly got its hands on any turnovers in preseason and that continued yesterday. Speed doesn’t seem have helped in that area.

Next week could make a difference

If the Saints beat Houston, they’ll be one of about 25 teams that will be 1-1. If not, if they lose, with Tennessee looming on the horizon, it could get really bad. This is not the same team that started 6-1 last year, but look how that one finished. Maybe the trend can be reversed this year.

No help from newcomers

One cause for concern for me is the fact that other than tight end Ernie Conwell, there seems to be no one acquired in the offseason that is making a contribution.

Offensive woes

Brooks didn’t look sharp. The offensive line didn’t look sharp. Some of the receivers didn’t look sharp. Considering how poorly Seattle had done in opening games over the past few years, this performance was really disappointing.

Howard was one of the few bright spots

He was playing well and seemed to be moving really well before the injury. He just seems to be unable to stay healthy. This will definitely hurt because he’s probably the most talented guy they have on the line. Willie Whitehead will come in and play and do a solid job, but Howard was the guy they were counting on for big things.

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