Saints Outpace Rams with Solid Offensive Performance
The Saints matched up against the defending Super Bowl champion LA Rams on Sunday. Both teams have been having rough season up to this point, sitting at 3-7 and 3-6 respectively, which meant both teams were looking to gain a little momentum for the back half of the season.
The Rams would have the ball first after the Saints deferred. The teams traded punts in the first few drives.
In the Saints second drive, they showed their first signs of life since the Raiders game. A good toss from Dalton to Juwan Johnson got the Saints a first down in the red zone.
After an incompletion on the next play, two straight sacks pushed Wil Lutz back to make it a 46 yard field goal. Lutz nailed the kick anyway and the Saints went up by 3.
For the Rams, it only took one play. A bomb from Matt Stafford to Tutu Atwell made the score 7-3.
The Saints were not able to match the Rams explosive play. Blake Gillikin was able to pin the Rams inside the 5 and give the Saints defense a big advantage. After a beautiful pass break-up by Alontae Taylor, the Saints got the ball back with excellent field position.
The Saints would start the second quarter with the ball.
The Saints started the second quarter with an efficient drive and got the ball to Juwan again for their first touchdown.
On the next drive, after giving up a 4th down conversion earlier in the drive, the Saints stuffed Cam Akers on another 4th down to get the ball back to their offense.
The Rams dissected the Saints on the next drive and scored easily. The Saints would go into the half down by 4.
The Saints came out of the half swinging and drove down the field to score a touchdown with Juice.
The Saints defense looked refreshed too, pummeling Matt Stafford and getting the ball back to their offense.
Stafford appeared to be injured on the play and would not return to the game.
Despite taking a bad sack on a trick play, Dalton managed to find Chris Olave, who smoked cornerback Jalen Ramsey for one of the best touchdowns of the season.
The Rams trotted Bryce Perkins out to lead their offense. His mobility proved to be a challenge for the Saints defense, and the Rams offense transitioned into being significantly more run-heavy.
The Saints continued their streak of starting quarters well, with a Shy Tuttle pass deflection to force a Rams field goal.
The Saints offense continued to move well. After Dalton took another sack, the Saints extended their lead to 10 with a Wil Lutz kick.
The Rams would be down two scores with 9 minutes left in the game. Without their starting quarterback, the Rams were relying on a heavy dose of the run game and short, easy completions. But they couldn't get it done against an energized Saints defense.
The Saints didn't do much but burn clock before sending the ball back to the Rams, and on the ensuing drive, two huge sacks forced the Rams to put from their own endzone.
The Saints offense, once again with excellent field position just needed one first down to be able to tick away the remaining time.
They didn't get the first down, and the Rams managed to steal a late field goal. They then tried to complete an onside kick and were unsuccessful.
Andy Dalton knelt down, and the game was over.