|Last 3 Games||1-0||+1||1-0||0-1||23.0||13.0||419.0||(6.5)||1.0||17.0||10.0||367.0||(7.1)||2.0|
|Offense (All Games)||23.0||13.0||18.0||35:11||29-78||(2.7)||26-35||74.3%||341||(9.7)||64-419||(6.5)||(18.2)|
|Opponents Defensive Avg.||23||13||18||35:11||29-78||(2.7)||26-35||74.3%||341||(9.7)||64-419||(6.5)||(18.2)|
|Defense (All Games)||17.0||10.0||18.0||24:49||14-88||(6.3)||25-38||65.8%||279||(7.3)||52-367||(7.1)||(21.6)|
|Opponents Offensive Avg.||17||10||18||25:49||14-88||(6.3)||25-38||65.8%||279||(7.3)||52-367||(7.1)||(21.6)|
|Stats For (All Games)||1.0||0.0||1.0||1.0||13-6||46.2%||1-0||0.0%||1-23||(23)||4-7||(1.7)||6-57|
|Opponents Avg. Stats Against||1||0||1||1||13-6||46.2%||1-0||0.0%||1-23||(23)||7-4||(1.7)||6-57|
|Stats Against (All Games)||1.0||1.0||2.0|| ||11-3||27.3%||1-0||0.0%||0-0||(0)||2-21||(10.5)||2-19|
|Opponents Avg. Stats For||1||1||2|| ||11-3||27.3%||1-0||0.0%||0-0||(0)||21-2||(10.5)||2-19|
|Last 3 Games||0-1||-1.7||0-1||0-1||17.0||14.0||250.0||(4.5)||2.0||18.0||12.0||304.0||(4.5)||2.0|
|Offense (All Games)||17.0||14.0||12.0||27:38||25-65||(2.6)||15-31||48.4%||185||(6)||56-250||(4.5)||(14.7)|
|Opponents Defensive Avg.||15||13.5||10.5||27:49||24-60||(2.4)||17-35||48.6%||182||(5.2)||60-241||(4.1)||(16.1)|
|Defense (All Games)||18.0||12.0||22.0||32:22||29-90||(3.1)||24-39||61.5%||214||(5.5)||68-304||(4.5)||(16.9)|
|Opponents Offensive Avg.||14||7.5||18.5||33:11||30-110||(3.6)||20-37||52.7%||202||(5.4)||68-311||(4.6)||(22.2)|
|Stats For (All Games)||1.0||1.0||2.0||0.0||16-6||37.5%||0-0||0.0%||3-92||(30.7)||3-35||(11.7)||13-102|
|Opponents Avg. Stats Against||0.5||0.5||1||2||17-5||29.4%||0-0||0.0%||2-58||(29.2)||54-4||(11.9)||8-66|
|Stats Against (All Games)||1.0||1.0||2.0|| ||18-7||38.9%||0-0||0.0%||1-19||(19)||1-9||(9)||6-45|
|Opponents Avg. Stats For||2||1||3|| ||18-6||36.1%||0-0||0.0%||0-10||(19)||8-2||(5.3)||7-56|
|Average power rating of opponents played: NEW ORLEANS 25, TAMPA BAY 15|
|9/15/2013||@ TAMPA BAY|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|9/22/2013||ARIZONA|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|9/30/2013||MIAMI|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|10/6/2013||@ CHICAGO|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|10/13/2013||@ NEW ENGLAND|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|9/8/2013||@ NY JETS||17-18||L||-4||L||39.5||U||25-65||15-31-185||2||29-90||24-39-214||2|
|9/15/2013||NEW ORLEANS|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|9/22/2013||@ NEW ENGLAND|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|9/29/2013||ARIZONA|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|10/13/2013||PHILADELPHIA|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|NEW ORLEANS: The Saints are a pass-heavy offense, but they feature one of the NFL's most versatile and unique running games. They have a series of looks they can run out of, the most common of which is Mark Ingram behind fullback Jed Collins. They use a series of zone and man blocking schemes borrowed from other systems. Darren Sproles is on the field a lot, but primarily in spread formations from which the Saints almost always throw. Most of his touches will come on receptions. Pierre Thomas is the team's most versatile back.
The return of head coach Sean Payton should be a nice boost for Drew Brees and the passing game. This is a spread passing attack, with a lot of West Coast routes. Brees is most comfortable with Marques Colston, who does a lot of his work facing the line of scrimmage. They'll also use TE Jimmy Graham as basically a receiver 1A, moving him around in formations and having him work underneath or up the seam when the matchup is right. Slot receiver Lance Moore also did more work up the seam last year, though he only plays about 60 percent of snaps. Joe Morgan will take Devery Henderson's field-stretching role on the outside. The Saints are very pass-heavy in the red zone, throwing on a league-high 71.2 percent of their goal-to-go plays in 2012.
The Saints gave up 908 more yards than any other NFL team, setting a league record for futility with 7,042 total yards allowed. They also surrendered the second-most points (28.4 PPG). New defensive coordinator Rob Ryan inherits a defense that recorded just six sacks in the final six games. There are still productive veterans in ILBs Curtis Lofton and Jonathan Vilma to lead the front seven, but two newcomers must have a huge impact right away, former Steelers CB Keenan Lewis, and versatile rookie FS Kenny Vaccaro.|
|TAMPA BAY: Because the team was involved in so many back-and-forth, comeback affairs, Tampa was more pass-happy than head coach Greg Schiano would have liked. That should change this year, as they'll rely heavily on Doug Martin as the centerpiece of the offense. They'll continue to use a lot of zone blocking in front of Martin, and Erik Lorig will be on the field often as a lead blocker. They added ex-Bengal hybrid back Brian Leonard, one of Schiano's best players at Rutgers. He figures to take some passing down reps from Martin, but he won't get many carries. Rookie Mike James won't be used much either.
The Bucs brass is reportedly a little sour on Josh Freeman, and they may opt to take the ball out of his hands more. Most of what they'll do will be based off play-action and aimed at getting the big play. Vincent Jackson will continue to see a ton of passes thrown his way on the outside, with Mike Williams settled in as a complementary player. Martin will see more work in the passing game, both as a safety valve and on screens. The Bucs don't have a big role for the tight ends in this offense, but they don't have much talent at that position anyway. Tampa Bay would also like to get more run-heavy in the red zone, where Martin now takes pretty much all reps.
The Bucs boasted the NFL's No. 1 run defense (82.5 rush YPG allowed), but only because teams torched them through the air for a league-worst 297 passing YPG. Shutdown CB Darrelle Revis and hard-hitting FS Dashon Goldson will help fix the broken secondary, but the pass rush (26 sacks, T-3rd-worst in NFL) is still pretty weak, even if DE Adrian Clayborn returns 100 percent from last year's torn ACL. But there's nothing weak about non-stop WLB Lavonte David who recorded 20 TFL (3rd in NFL) as a rookie last year.|
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER PRO FOOTBALL PREVIEW (NEW ORLEANS-TAMPA BAY) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Saints-Buccaneers Preview* ===========================
Perhaps it's a coincidence that Drew Brees began his record-setting streak of games with a touchdown pass after his lone matchup against Darelle Revis.
Now these superstars will meet twice a season on a yearly basis.
Revis should face a stiff challenge in his home debut for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers against Brees and the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.
Brees threw for eight touchdowns and 684 yards with a 69.7 completion percentage while getting sacked once as New Orleans (1-0) swept Tampa Bay a year ago.
"He's an elite quarterback, not only in this time but in the history of the league," Buccaneers coach Greg Schiano said. "This guy is special. You're not going to stop him, no one does. Can you contain him? That's more of the challenge, that's what we need to do."
It's clear that Tampa Bay (0-1) upgraded its secondary in the offseason with Brees and fellow NFC South foe Matt Ryan of Atlanta in mind by adding Revis from the Jets and safety Dashon Goldson from San Francisco.
Revis said he felt no complications in last Sunday's 18-17 loss to the Jets in his first action since suffering a torn knee ligament Sept. 23 in his final game for New York.
"It felt good, getting back out there and doing what I love to do," Revis said. "I was just excited to be out there with my teammates, they've been anxious, I've been anxious. So it was a great feeling."
The only time Revis and Brees were on the field together was the Saints' 24-10 victory over the Jets on Oct. 4, 2009. Brees completed 20 of 32 passes with no touchdowns or interceptions before starting his record streak of 54 straight regular-season games with a TD pass in his next contest.
The New Orleans signal-caller realizes it won't be easy to put up gaudy numbers against Tampa Bay this week.
"Obviously, Revis and his reputation - he's one of the best corners in the league, and you've got two young corners on the other side too that play very well," Brees said. "So, all in all, it's an extremely solid secondary and one that you've got to be able to prepare for."
Brees started 2013 in strong fashion last Sunday by completing 26 of 35 passes for 357 yards with touchdowns to Marques Colston and tight end Jimmy Graham in a 23-17 home win over Atlanta. It marked coach Sean Payton's return to the sideline after sitting out 2012 due to the bounty scandal.
The Saints went to work in practice this week on improving a running game that produced 78 yards on 29 carries.
"It needs to be better," Payton said. "We were close in some areas and yet we still have to work on and clean up a number of things to improve it."
The Bucs were looking for improvement in the same area after Doug Martin carried 24 times for 65 yards and a touchdown in Week 1. Martin was limited to a career-low 16 yards the last time he faced the Saints in a 41-0 loss Dec. 16.
Tampa Bay knows that teams will continue to stack the line of scrimmage to stop Martin if Josh Freeman turns in efforts like last week, when he was 15 of 31 for 210 yards with one score and one interception.
"You have to make people pay when they're going to try to take away Doug Martin," Schiano said. "You can't always pound your head into a wall. You've got to make them pay."
New Orleans allowed a league-worst 6.3 yards per carry in Week 1 after ranking last in that category last season at 5.2.
The Bucs' running game also could benefit from having a healthy Carl Nicks on the offensive line, but the former Saints guard's status is unclear although he practiced Wednesday for the first time in a month. Nicks' return from toe surgery was delayed when he was diagnosed as having an MRSA infection during the preseason.
Nicks was cautious about returning, but added: "I'm going to do everything in my power to play."
The Saints are wary of Freeman, who totaled nine TDs and no interceptions in a five-start stretch against New Orleans before being picked off four times in the shutout loss last December.
"One of the things with Josh has always been his ability to extend plays," Payton said. "It's been tough for us."
Schiano and the Bucs are doing their best to move on from last week's loss in which Lavonte David's personal foul for a hit out of bounds on Geno Smith led to the Jets' game-winning field goal.
Tampa Bay was flagged a total of 13 times for 102 yards - both league highs in Week 1. Goldson and Mark Barron also drew penalties for big hits.
"We've got to be smart about it. The strike zone is decreasing in the National Football League, and we've got to make sure we stay within the rules," Schiano said.
|Last Updated: 9/2/2014 11:22:21 PM EST|