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Payton: Running game must improve and has been

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Brett Martel AP Sports Writer Published: Thursday, October 14, 2010 at 9:00 a.m. Last Modified: Thursday, October 14, 2010 at 9:28 a.m. ( page of 3 ) METAIRIE Although the Saints haven't been known as a running team in ...

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Old 10-14-2010, 02:50 PM   #1
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Brett Martel
AP Sports Writer


Published: Thursday, October 14, 2010 at 9:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, October 14, 2010 at 9:28 a.m.
( page of 3 )

METAIRIE Although the Saints haven't been known as a running team in the Sean Payton era, the coach and his players are well aware that New Orleans' past two playoff seasons came when they ran the ball well.



Through five games this season, the defending Super Bowl champions rank 31st or second to last in the NFL in yards rushing per game at 75.6, a figure Payton wants to see rise in a hurry.

"When we've been clicking, we've had balance and we just haven't been throwing the ball," Payton said after Wednesday's practice. "We do a lot of play-action and that's effective when you're running the ball efficiently. That's something that we'll continue to work on."

The Saints' rushing average has increased marginally during the past two weeks, despite injuries to top two running backs Pierre Thomas (sprained left ankle) and Reggie Bush (broken right leg).

Thomas, who was the Saints' top rusher last season (793 yards), has missed the past two games and did not practice on Wednesday, leaving his status unclear for Sunday's game at Tampa Bay. Bush, who rushed for 390 yards last season, has missed the last three games and expects to miss at least one more.

In 2009, Thomas, Bush and Mike Bell, who rushed for 654 yards, led a ground attack that ranked sixth in the NFL with 131.6 yards per game. In 2006, the Saints' only other playoff season under Payton, they averaged 110 yards rushing and ranked 19th.

This season, the Saints were counting on Lynell Hamilton to take over for Bell as their pounding, short-yardage, ball-control running back, but Hamilton went out for the season with a torn right knee ligament in training camp.

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Payton: Running game must improve and has been | HoumaToday.com

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Old 10-14-2010, 03:08 PM   #2
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I will take Ivory's 3.9 yards a crack all day...and make it work for me. 3.9x3= 11.7 = 1st downs. The actual formula has a few more parameters, but when its a viable option, and you work it to keep defenses honest and your attack more versatile, the dividend spills over into the other parts of the game being more effective. Once again, Payton is out-thinking himself. Spread the field and mix it up. Its much harder to force the ball down an opponents throat with two tight-ends on 3rd and short. Whether 1st and 10 or 3rd and short, spread the field with all of your options, and let Brees call it as he sees it. A good running mix even keeps our defense rested. It doesn't have to be forced. The run and the pass feed off each other. Take what we are given and other things will soon open up.

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Old 10-14-2010, 03:37 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by darstep View Post
I will take Ivory's 3.9 yards a crack all day...and make it work for me. 3.9x3= 11.7 = 1st downs. The actual formula has a few more parameters, but when its a viable option, and you work it to keep defenses honest and your attack more versatile, the dividend spills over into the other parts of the game being more effective. Once again, Payton is out-thinking himself. Spread the field and mix it up. Its much harder to force the ball down an opponents throat with two tight-ends on 3rd and short. Whether 1st and 10 or 3rd and short, spread the field with all of your options, and let Brees call it as he sees it. A good running mix even keeps our defense rested. It doesn't have to be forced. The run and the pass feed off each other. Take what we are given and other things will soon open up.
it sounds good to me dar
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Old 10-15-2010, 12:03 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by darstep View Post
I will take Ivory's 3.9 yards a crack all day...and make it work for me. 3.9x3= 11.7 = 1st downs. The actual formula has a few more parameters, but when its a viable option, and you work it to keep defenses honest and your attack more versatile, the dividend spills over into the other parts of the game being more effective. Once again, Payton is out-thinking himself. Spread the field and mix it up. Its much harder to force the ball down an opponents throat with two tight-ends on 3rd and short. Whether 1st and 10 or 3rd and short, spread the field with all of your options, and let Brees call it as he sees it. A good running mix even keeps our defense rested. It doesn't have to be forced. The run and the pass feed off each other. Take what we are given and other things will soon open up.
The Chris Ivory Show. Lets do it.
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Old 10-15-2010, 08:42 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by darstep View Post
I will take Ivory's 3.9 yards a crack all day...
Thats not so hot. But considering as a team we're averaging 3.3, its a huge improvement.
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Old 10-15-2010, 04:52 PM   #6
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Payton has to commit to the run more. I know injuries have played a factor in the playcalling. But, let the big guys pound on the D-Line and wear them down. D-Linemen want to rush the passer. They don't want to get punished and have to tackle. The Saints had a balanced run to pass ratio last year. How did that turn out?
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Old 10-15-2010, 05:35 PM   #7
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But here's the big problem with the "The Chris Ivory Show" (and the Betts show last week)....fumbles!!! Our backs have not held on to the ball, so who cares what the heck their average is?
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