Saints Host Panthers – Inside The Numbers
The New Orleans Saints are back in action on Sunday afternoon, when they play host to the Carolina Panthers in an NFC South showdown.
Kickoff time at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, La. is scheduled for noon, and you can hear all the play-by-play action on ESPN 1420, as well as 97.3 The Dawg.
The game marks the first of four match-ups that the Saints will play against teams that are currently under .500 to end their 2014 regular season schedule.
The Saints, who snapped a three-game losing streak by defeating the Pittsburgh Steelers, 35-32, last Sunday, are currently to 5-7 on the season, which puts them in a first-place tie with the Atlanta Falcons atop the NFC South.
The Panthers, who fell to the Minnesota Vikings, 31-13, last Sunday, have lost six-consecutive games, and will come in at 3-8-1 on the year, which currently puts them in third place in the NFC South.
Carolina leads the all-time series, 20-19, with New Orleans outscoring the Panthers, 817-810.
The Saints won the last meeting, 28-10, back on October 30th.
Offensively, the Saints are averaging 26.9 points, 430.3 total yards, 303.9 passing yards, and 126.3 rushing yards-per-game.
New Orleans is led by quarterback Drew Brees, who has thrown for 3,748 yards and 27 touchdowns, running back Mark Ingram, who has accumulated 746 rushing yards with six touchdowns on 172 touches, and tight end Jimmy Graham, who has compiled 670 receiving yards, along with nine touchdowns, on 65 catches.
The Panthers, offensively, are averaging 19.0 points, 328.9 total yards, 225.8 passing yards, and 103.2 rushing yards a contest.
Carolina is paced by quarterback Cam Newton, who has passed for 2,586 yards and 13 touchdowns, running back Jonathan Stewart, who has rushed for 408 yards and two touchdowns, and Kelvin Benjamin, who has 57 receptions for 824 yards and eight touchdowns.
Defensively, the Saints are giving up an average of 390.5 yards-per-game, which ranks 31st in the league, while the Panthers are allowing 360.3, which ranks 17th.
The match-up marks the first of a stretch of four games in which the Saints will play three against members of the NFC South.