|Last 3 Games||1-2||-0.2||2-1||2-0||23.7||12.3||311.0||(4.7)||1.0||28.3||16.0||355.3||(5.3)||1.3|
|Offense (All Games)||22.7||11.4||18.7||27:43||34-140||(4.1)||19-33||56.8%||193||(5.8)||68-333||(4.9)||(14.7)|
|Opponents Defensive Avg.||20.1||9.5||18.8||30:59||27-98||(3.7)||22-37||59.8%||234||(6.3)||64-332||(5.2)||(16.5)|
|Offense Road Games||22.3||11.0||17.7||27:52||29-122||(4.2)||20-38||51.8%||191||(5)||67-313||(4.7)||(14)|
|Defense (All Games)||25.4||13.7||21.4||33:28||31-124||(4)||22-39||55.1%||257||(6.6)||70-380||(5.4)||(15)|
|Opponents Offensive Avg.||21.3||11.1||19.3||31:35||27-101||(3.8)||22-36||59.5%||231||(6.4)||63-333||(5.3)||(15.6)|
|Defense Road Games||28.3||16.0||19.3||32:08||33-131||(4)||17-31||53.2%||234||(7.5)||64-365||(5.7)||(12.9)|
|Stats For (All Games)||0.7||0.7||1.4||0.7||16-6||35.7%||1-0||33.3%||2-32||(20.4)||2-16||(8.8)||7-65|
|Opponents Avg. Stats Against||0.8||0.6||1.5||2.1||15-6||38.5%||1-0||29.2%||2-39||(23.6)||23-2||(9.3)||6-56|
|Stats For (Road Games)||0.7||0.0||0.7||1.0||18-6||34.0%||1-0||25.0%||2-35||(20.8)||2-17||(8.7)||7-65|
|Stats Against (All Games)||1.7||0.4||2.1|| ||16-6||37.7%||1-0||40.0%||3-64||(21.3)||4-46||(12.5)||8-67|
|Opponents Avg. Stats For||1.1||0.5||1.7|| ||15-6||38.1%||1-0||46.5%||2-51||(24.5)||24-2||(10.3)||6-55|
|Stats Against (Road Games)||1.3||0.3||1.7|| ||15-5||34.1%||1-0||0.0%||3-52||(19.5)||5-69||(14.9)||10-89|
|Last 3 Games||2-1||+1||2-1||2-1||30.3||16.0||391.0||(6.2)||1.0||21.7||11.3||380.3||(6.2)||2.0|
|Offense (All Games)||26.8||14.2||21.0||33:33||25-87||(3.5)||26-39||66.2%||311||(7.9)||65-398||(6.1)||(14.8)|
|Opponents Defensive Avg.||23.9||12.7||20.3||31:60||27-106||(3.9)||23-36||62.2%||255||(7)||64-362||(5.7)||(15.1)|
|Offense Home Games||30.7||16.0||22.7||34:50||26-83||(3.2)||28-40||70.8%||352||(8.8)||66-436||(6.6)||(14.2)|
|Defense (All Games)||17.2||9.7||18.8||26:27||22-114||(5.1)||20-34||59.7%||224||(6.5)||57-338||(5.9)||(19.7)|
|Opponents Offensive Avg.||22.2||12.4||19.4||29:14||23-91||(4)||23-38||61.1%||243||(6.3)||61-334||(5.4)||(15)|
|Defense Home Games||13.7||9.0||17.7||25:10||16-96||(5.9)||22-36||60.2%||219||(6.1)||52-315||(6)||(23)|
|Stats For (All Games)||0.8||0.3||1.2||0.8||14-6||42.2%||0-0||33.3%||1-29||(19.2)||2-21||(8.5)||5-39|
|Opponents Avg. Stats Against||1||0.7||1.8||2.1||14-6||40.9%||1-0||47.5%||2-40||(23.4)||15-2||(8.3)||6-54|
|Stats For (Home Games)||0.7||0.3||1.0||1.7||13-6||48.7%||0-0||0.0%||1-20||(19.7)||3-35||(10.4)||5-44|
|Stats Against (All Games)||1.3||0.7||2.0|| ||12-4||35.2%||1-0||20.0%||2-48||(26.2)||2-11||(6.1)||5-43|
|Opponents Avg. Stats For||1||0.6||1.6|| ||13-5||36.0%||1-0||40.0%||2-51||(24.5)||16-2||(8.4)||5-50|
|Stats Against (Home Games)||2.0||0.7||2.7|| ||11-4||33.3%||0-0||0.0%||2-52||(25.8)||2-14||(8.2)||3-21|
|Average power rating of opponents played: BUFFALO 21.9, NEW ORLEANS 19.3|
|9/22/2013||@ NY JETS||20-27||L||2.5||L||40.5||O||25-120||19-42-208||0||41-182||16-29-331||2|
|10/27/2013||@ NEW ORLEANS|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|11/3/2013||KANSAS CITY|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|11/10/2013||@ PITTSBURGH|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|11/17/2013||NY JETS|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|9/15/2013||@ TAMPA BAY||16-14||W||-3||L||48.5||U||20-75||26-46-296||2||33-160||9-22-113||2|
|10/13/2013||@ NEW ENGLAND||27-30||L||2.5||L||51||O||26-131||17-36-230||2||35-141||25-43-235||1|
|10/27/2013||BUFFALO|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|11/3/2013||@ NY JETS|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|11/10/2013||DALLAS|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|11/17/2013||SAN FRANCISCO|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|11/21/2013||@ ATLANTA|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|BUFFALO: Don't expect major changes to the running game under new head coach Doug Marrone's regime. O-Line coach Pat Morris has leaned toward zone blocking over his career. The Bills should continue to rely on a lot of inside zone plays, which were highly effective last year. They'll continue to utilize both of their talented backs, with C.J. Spiller getting the bulk of the work over Fred Jackson. Spiller has become more of a north-south runner, making him much more effective. They'll also bring back a fullback sometimes.
Marrone and new offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett were together at Syracuse, where they ran a tempo passing game that used a lot of no-huddle and pistol formations. If EJ Manuel isn't ready Week 1, Kevin Kolb will start and should get to make a lot of decisions pre-snap. Stevie Johnson is the clear-cut No. 1 receiver, and the kind of cerebral, instinctive player who should thrive in this offense. Running backs are also expected to be featured much more heavily than in recent seasons. Spiller showed an ability to pick up tough yards last year and will typically get the first crack near the goal line.
The Bills surrendered 35+ points six times last year, but new defensive coordinator Mike Pettine, the Jets DC in 2012, will try to capitalize on more forced turnovers than Dave Wannstedt's defense did last year (21 takeaways, T-9th-fewest in NFL). Pettine was criticized for running too conservative of a defense in New York, but has rolled out a hybrid 3-4 scheme in Buffalo. He has plenty of pass rushers in DEs Mario Williams and Mark Anderson, and the team also has two new starting OLBs in Manny Lawson and Jerry Hughes. The quality secondary could miss hard-hitting S George Wilson, but Buffalo gets to face six opponents with bottom-6 scoring offenses from last season.|
|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.|
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER PRO FOOTBALL PREVIEW (BUFFALO-NEW ORLEANS) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
(EDITS 15th graf)
*Bills-Saints Preview* ======================
By JEFF MEZYDLO STATS Senior Writer
The New Orleans Saints have had plenty of time to move on from their first loss of the season, which came in heartbreaking fashion.
Coming off their bye week, the Saints' focus shifts to trying to prevent the Buffalo Bills from moving back to .500 on Sunday at the Superdome.
Tom Brady hit Kenbrell Thompkins for a 17-yard touchdown with 5 seconds left to deal the Saints a 30-27 loss at New England on Oct. 13. While the memory is hard for New Orleans' players to forget, the Saints (5-1) are confident going forward.
"The overall mood and spirits were good," coach Sean Payton said.
"I like the work ethic, the competitive nature of this team. I like it a lot."
The NFC South leaders are sixth in the NFL with 397.7 total yards and 26.8 points per game. New Orleans ranks 28th with 3.4 yards per carry, but Drew Brees has completed a league-high 69 passes to his running backs.
The Saints are fourth with 17.2 points allowed per contest after giving up 28.4 in 2012.
Brees believes the lessons learned from the dramatic loss to the Patriots will make the team stronger because of the way they've handled the situation.
"At times, when you lose, especially a tough loss like that, you make more of an impact when you're encouraging and very positive," said Brees, who has eight touchdowns and one interception in the last three games.
"At times, human nature would tell you to do one thing when really you may need to just take a deep breath and do the other. I think after a loss, human nature would tell you to get all riled up and mad and angry and yell. I think cooler heads prevailed and Sean has a great feel for that, to say, `Man, you guys battled, you played your heart out. It didn't go our way this time but there's going to be many more like this. Let's be ready to win those.'"
Brees hopes Jimmy Graham can play Sunday after suffering a foot injury last week, when cornerback Aqib Talib and the Patriots held the star tight end without a catch for the first time in 46 games. Graham leads all tight ends with 593 receiving yards and posted four straight 100-yard games prior to facing New England.
"We know every week there's going to be a plan for Jimmy Graham and a plan for (Darren) Sproles and a plan for (Marques) Colston, and that's just opportunities for guys like (tight end) Ben Watson to have big days and these young receivers to continue to develop," Brees said. "If they're spending that much time worrying about you, then other guys can make them pay as well.
"That's football, that's the chess match that we play each Sunday."
New Orleans, which hasn't faced Buffalo since 2009, has outscored the Bills 70-20 while winning the last three meetings.
Buffalo (3-4) avoided a third straight loss with a 23-21 victory at Miami last Sunday. Fred Jackson shook off a knee injury to total 85 yards with a rushing TD while ex-Dolphin Dan Carpenter kicked a pair of fourth-quarter field goals, including the 31-yard winner with 33 seconds left, to rally Buffalo from a four-point deficit.
The Bills have had a lead in all but one game, and they haven't trailed by more than 14 points.
"I'm extremely proud," said first-year coach Doug Marrone, who was New Orleans' offensive coordinator under Payton from 2006-08. "We're fighting, fighting, fighting. And that's what we're going to keep doing. ... Granted, we're not happy with the record or where we're at, but we're working on changing that every single day."
Jackson has been the poster boy for Buffalo's resiliency, overcoming knee problems to gain 595 yards from scrimmage and a team-leading five touchdowns. Second on the club with 25 receptions, Jackson is confident he'll play Sunday despite his injuries.
"I expect to be out there. I'll do everything I can," he said.
"We've got a great opportunity in front of us right now. And I want to be a part of it. The confidence in this locker room is sky-high in here. We believe in ourselves. And there's nothing more powerful than a locker room that has confidence in itself."
Even with quarterback Thaddeus Lewis set to make his third straight start in place of the EJ Manuel, the Bills and Denver are the only teams to score at least 20 points in every game.
Lewis, who has made three career starts in two seasons, has done a serviceable job by completing 62.5 percent of his passes for 418 yards with two touchdowns and an interception the last two weeks.
Brees threw for just 172 yards without a TD or INT in the teams' last meeting four years ago at Buffalo, but teammate Pierre Thomas ran for 126 and two scores during New Orleans' 27-7 win.
Marrone is uncertain whether running back C.J. Spiller will play. The coach said Wednesday says he's considering sitting Spiller to give his sore left ankle time to heal and won't make a decision until later this week.
The dynamic back hasn't missed a game, but his playing time and production have been limited since he was hurt against Baltimore on Sept. 29.
|Last Updated: 10/2/2014 1:36:46 PM EST|