Saints Starters Look Ready for the Regular Season in Preseason Win
Two big stories in this one.
Look at it as a good news, bad news situation.
Let's start with the bad news. Injuries and penalties.
If there is one thing Coach Dennis Allen could be frustrated about with every level of the depth chart, it's sloppy play. Quite a few silly penalties ended up hurting the Saints, but most of them thankfully did not lead to anything seriously bad.
The injuries are a different issue. Multiple notable players ended up going out at some point or another. Marquez Callaway, Trevor Penning, Albert Huggins, Tre'Quan Smith, and Malcolm Roach all saw the inside of the dreaded blue tent.
It got to a point that people were begging Coach Allen to just burn the clock.
It will take some time before Saints fans get any answers about what injuries these players suffered, but the fact that there were this many injuries at all is bad enough.
There is quite a bit of good news though.
The Saints starters looked lethal on both sides of the ball. The offense looked smooth, with the Saints finally playing stars like Jameis Winston, Alvin Kamara, and Jarvis Landry. The first drive in which those starters played was beautiful and ended in a touchdown for veteran Mark Ingram.
And Ingram didn't stop there.
The starters on defense didn't disappoint either. Demario Davis welcomed Chase Daniels back to the dome the best way he knows how.
A sack to force a three-and-out.
By the end of the first quarter, the Saints were on pace for 44 first downs. Impressive work.
Behind the starters, a few preseason standouts did all they could to secure bubble roster spots or practice squad positions. Just to shout out some names, the Saints got good performances out of guys like Kirk Merritt, Lucas Krull, Nephi Sewell, and Justin Evans.
Believe it or not, Ian Book had an extremely impressive game. Aside from a couple of bad throws and two bad reads, the Notre Dame alum, who has been struggling this preseason, played really well, particularly with his legs. He also completed a good touchdown drive with a pass to Kirk Merritt.
Last thing worth mentioning is this absolutely bizarre play which would've been a touchdown had the refs not blown the whistle when they weren't supposed to.
The Saints open their season in Atlanta against the Falcons on September 11 at noon.