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saintz08 08-22-2004 07:02 PM

Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'
 
Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'

N.O. has trouble with the basics

By Jeff Duncan

GREEN BAY, WIS. -- Deuce McAllister and Aaron Brooks reached the same sobering conclusion after the Saints' ugly 19-14 exhibition loss to Green Bay on Saturday night.

We got a long way to go, Brooks said.

And unfortunately, a short time to get there.

The Saints have a lot to accomplish in the three weeks that remain before the Sept. 12 regular-season opener against Seattle. In 21 days, they must heal Brooks' strained right thigh, mend their injury-riddled offensive line, find a running game, school their receivers on the fine art of catching the ball, and along the way establish some semblance of offensive continuity and execution.

We have a ways to go, said McAllister, who supplied the bulk of the offensive production with 40 yards on 11 carries.

The inept performance was difficult to watch, unless you were one of the 69,666 green-and-gold-clad crazies who packed refurbished Lambeau Field on this crisp August night.

For most of the evening, the Saints offense played like a bunch of cheeseheads. They dropped half a dozen passes, committed 10 penalties and four turnovers, failed to convert short-yardage opportunities and rarely blocked anyone.

Brooks, seeing his first action of the preseason, played four series before re-aggravating his strained right thigh in the second quarter. He completed seven of 13 passes for 44 yards, but four of the incompletions were dropped passes: two by Joe Horn, one by Boo Williams and one by Donté Stallworth.

I felt pretty good, but obviously I'm not where I want to be, as I aggravated my injury, said Brooks, who reinjured his leg on a 3-yard scramble early in the second quarter. We've got to learn to catch the ball. We've got to catch the ball, the first thing, and we've got to eliminate some of the penalties. We've got a long way to go.

The Saints' first eight drives ended this way: punt, punt, punt, interception, punt, punt, punt, punt. The interception ended the Saints' deepest penetration of the first half at the Green Bay 35-yard line. It took the offense until midway through the third quarter before it reached the Packers' red zone.

Execution is what it's all about, McAllister said. Catching the ball, us blocking, everybody doing their job. It's about us.

The execution didn't get any better when the second team entered. In fact, it got worse. On backup quarterback Todd Bouman's first pass and second play overall after subbing for Brooks, he underthrew an open Jerome Pathon, who had beaten Darren Sharper on a post pattern down the middle. Sharper picked off the pass at the 10 and returned the ball 90 yards for a score.

I just read the receiver's route and looked back at the quarterback, Sharper said. He tried to sneak it in there and throw it low. When I got the ball in my hands, I had a flashback to my punt return days in college. But I don't have the same speed, so I got a little bit tired at the end.

The Saints' best offense was the pass-interference penalty. Green Bay, which left its cornerbacks in single, bump-and-run coverage most of the night, was penalized six times for pass interference or defensive holding for 119 yards. Eight of the Saints' 22 first downs came by penalties.

The lone offensive highlight was a 70-yard touchdown reception by rookie Devery Henderson in the fourth quarter that trimmed the Packers' lead to 19-14. Henderson caught a short pass from J.T. O'Sullivan.

The offensive line, playing without starting tackles Wayne Gandy and Victor Riley, was overmatched most of the evening. The front five struggled to protect the quarterback or clear running room. Five Saints backs combined to rush for 42 yards on 23 carries and a 1.8-yard average.

We came out, our minds made up about getting after the quarterback and stopping the run, said Packers defensive tackle Cletidus Hunt.

For the most part, the Saints' defense held its own against Brett Favre and the high-powered Packers offense. The first unit allowed only one Ryan Longwell field goal. The Packers missed two other scoring chances when Longwell shanked a 40-yard field goal attempt and Bubba Franks fumbled at the Saints' 19.

The Saints played conservatively on defense. They rarely blitzed, choosing to drop seven players into coverage and prevent big plays. The secondary had as much trouble holding on to the ball as the receivers. Jason Craft, Tebucky Jones and Colby Bockwoldt dropped easy interceptions.

The run defense was improved from the preseason opener against the Jets. The Saints held Green Bay to 98 yards on 30 carries.

I think it went well, defensive end Darren Howard said. Green Bay runs a different kind of offense with a different kind of positioning. We matched up well. They looked to run to the right side, and I think we held our ground.

The Packers' starting offense has not scored a touchdown in two preseason games.

It's the preseason, and I think this group will be able to get a touchdown, Packers coach Mike Sherman said. You want to get a touchdown every single time, but I think we'll be able to come away with a touchdown in the second half.

. . . . . . .

saintz08 08-22-2004 07:08 PM

Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'
 
From the Hasbeen file / Propaganda report :

To get his message across, he fosters teamwork while relying on intensity, a zeal for preparation and a dedication to the basics of blocking and tackling. In an NFL era where the makeup of a team can change dramatically each year because of free agency, Haslett\'s ability to rapidly create a winning atmosphere among those who were once football strangers ranks among his greatest strengths.


The reality :

For most of the evening, the Saints offense played like a bunch of cheeseheads. They dropped half a dozen passes, committed 10 penalties and four turnovers, failed to convert short-yardage opportunities and rarely blocked anyone.

Hasbeen been playing golf ????..... ;)

GumboBC 08-22-2004 08:23 PM

Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'
 
As hard as I\'ve been on Haslett, I just don\'t know what the hell the man can do. How do you brainwash Joe Horn into not dropping the ball? Do you cut Joe? What do you do? Somebody please tell me what Haslett can do about Joe Horn?

As far as penalties go. The first team hardly commited any penalties. That was much later in the game when that started occuring. And Green Bays starters had an enormous amout of penalties.

These offensive problems are being overblown IMO. The only thing that\'s not being overblown is the dropped passes by the receivers. The Green Bay game is not a good barometer to measure the Saints offense by. Do it if you must, but there were a LOT of starters that didn\'t even play. All of \'em on the offesnsive line. Not a good time to have that happen when the Packers\' defense was blitzing every play.

Brooks did a great job, IMO. He had guys all over him at the snap and he hit them right in the hands and they simply dropped the ball. And when there was nothing there, Brooks threw the ball away. Unlike Bouman and O\'Sullivan who both looked like arena league QB\'s. They both made a bunch of bone-headed decisions.

In the Jets game, Brooks didn\'t even play. Bouman sucked in that game, but other than that the offense didn\'t look that bad.

This next preseason game shoud tell us more than the first 2. That is providing Brooks plays.

I\'m not real concerned about the offense myself. But that\'s just me.

[Edited on 23/8/2004 by GumboBC]

saintz08 08-23-2004 12:02 AM

Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'
 
Quote:

As hard as I\'ve been on Haslett, I just don\'t know what the hell the man can do. How do you brainwash Joe Horn into not dropping the ball? Do you cut Joe? What do you do? Somebody please tell me what Haslett can do about Joe Horn?
The answer is focus ....

Find the reason Horn , Stallworth and a boat load of previous receivers loose focus . The answer might be the Bell Ringer . Ever heard the phrase \" The quarterback hung his receiver out to dry \" ??? Also known as the high hope pass , the pass came out high and the receiver hopes he lives through the catch ....

I love the comments about Jake Delhomme , like \" great quarterback , he throws a 2 yd pass and the receiver runs for 20 yards \" ... Yes sports fans for those who know little or nothing more then what you read on the back of a cracker jack box , that is called placing the ball in a position to allow the receiver to advance it . That 20 yard advance is called YAC , Yards after Catch and usually goes in a stat column long forgotten since Brooks stepped under center .

A few hundred Bell Ringer shots like Stallworth took in the Seattle game last year and the receiver begins to get his hands up to protect himself too fast and does not retain focus long enough to catch the ball . Quarterbacks get happy feet and receivers loose focus trying to figure out where the defender is .....To solve the problem , have the quarterback put some air under the ball and get the receiver into a clear running lane ... ;)

frankeefrank 08-23-2004 12:51 AM

Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'
 
Funny 08,
You bring up YAC but there has to be a catch first.
AB puts the ball where it needs to be 80% of the time...
It\'s the other 20 percent in which the receivers need to work some too.

Fro example,
That arvin Harrison TD they always show... The one hander against the Saints...
Good throw or good catch?
Or both?
Or just a good catch?


saintz08 08-23-2004 04:01 AM

Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'
 
Quote:

Funny 08,
You bring up YAC but there has to be a catch first.
AB puts the ball where it needs to be 80% of the time...
It\'s the other 20 percent in which the receivers need to work some too.
Sure there has to be a catch first and I am sure you are up for the chance to tell me who leads the N.F.C. in Y.A.C. yards .

By the way if you are gonna use the infamous dropped pass disclaimer to Brooks passing totals I am sure your up to tell me who was the reigning champ of dropped passes last year ... Hint hint , he was on a play off team .... ;)

saintfan 08-23-2004 11:26 AM

Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'
 
Oh you have GOT to be kidding, although I admit you probably serious. I saw Jake throw randomly, off his back foot time after time last year. He\'d just throw it up there and pray. His WR\'s bailed him out time and time again last year. That\'s not being biased against Jake, tha\'s tellin it like it is. The bias is in your denial.

Nobody, and I mean NOBODY \"hang a WR out to dry\" like one of the recognized best, and that\'s Brett Farve.

I guess the Jake Delhomme bandwagon is getting ready to pull out of the station and you\'re already on board eh?

saintz08 08-23-2004 12:16 PM

Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'
 
Quote:

I guess the Jake Delhomme bandwagon is getting ready to pull out of the station and you\'re already on board eh?
Is it leaving on a Friday or Saturday night ???

The Saints receivers dropped too many balls point hardly holds water when you compare it to the top 5 receivers in the N.F.L from 2003 .....

Holt - caught 64 % of passes thrown to him
Moss - caught 65 % of passes thrown to him
Boldin - caught 62 % of passes thrown to him
Johnson - caught 59 % of passes thrown to him
Mason - caught 72 % of passes thrown to him
Horn - caught 60 % of passes thrown to him

Horn was not the worst , nor was he first but that is just in comparison to the top 5 receivers on 2003 ..... ;)

CheramieIII 08-23-2004 06:54 PM

Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'
 
Hey SaintZ, I assume the percentage includes bad passes? Cuz I think the percentage should only be measured only catchable balls, that way you can tell how many passes were dropped by the receiver.

saintz08 08-23-2004 08:19 PM

Shaky Saints have 'a long way to go'
 
Quote:

Hey SaintZ, I assume the percentage includes bad passes?
Would assume so too .

But considering the quarterbacks throwing the ball to all the other receivers on the team had completion percentages of :

Bulger - 63.2 %
Culpepper - 65.0 %
Blake - 56.7 %
Kitna - 62.3 %
McNair 62.5 %
Brooks - 59.1 %

It seems to filter out and tell the real story .....

Holt - caught 64 % of passes thrown to him
Moss - caught 65 % of passes thrown to him
Boldin - caught 62 % of passes thrown to him
Johnson - caught 59 % of passes thrown to him
Mason - caught 72 % of passes thrown to him
Horn - caught 60 % of passes thrown to him

Maybe the story ends , the receivers are only as good as the balls they are thrown .... ;)

And Boldin is a ball hawk ......


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