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Author: Ian Riise

Ranking the New Orleans Saints Position Groups at Midseason

NEW ORLEANS, LA – NOVEMBER 4: Tre’Quan Smith #10 celebrates with Alvin Kamara #41 of the New Orleans Saints against the Los Angeles Rams at the Mercedes Benz Superdome on November 4, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images) With a 7-1 record at the midpoint of the season, the New Orleans Saints are off to their best start since their 2009 championship season. Great team efforts and tactful coaching make it difficult to pick any team against them despite a difficult remaining schedule. However, some position groups need to perform better if the Saints are...

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New Orleans Saints Red Zone Success Key in Win Over Los Angeles Rams

NEW ORLEANS, LA – NOVEMBER 04: Benjamin Watson #82 of the New Orleans Saints catches a touchdown pass from quarterback Drew Brees #9 during the second quarter of the game against the Los Angeles Rams at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on November 4, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) In a highly anticipated matchup between the New Orleans Saints and Los Angeles Rams, it quickly became clear that every possession would matter. Both teams gained over 130 yards of offense in the first quarter, and a few plays into the second quarter the score was tied 14-14....

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Todd Gurley Presents Ultimate Challenge for New Orleans Saints Top-Ranked Run Defense

LOS ANGELES, CA – OCTOBER 28: Running back Todd Gurley #30 of the Los Angeles Rams breaks free in the fourth quarter against the Green Bay Packers at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on October 28, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images) With the NFL’s 23rd ranked defense in both points and total yards allowed, no one would dare call the New Orleans Saints defense a dominant unit. Their pass defense has taken a massive step backwards after growth in 2017, allowing a fifth-worst 300.0 passing yards per game thus far. However, these numbers don’t tell...

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Sheldon Rankins Development Into an Impact Player on Display Against Minnesota Vikings

NEW ORLEANS, LA – NOVEMBER 5: Sheldon Rankins #98 of the New Orleans Saints walks off the field and looks at the fans before a game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on November 5, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Saints defeated the Buccaneers 30-10. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) Ever since the New Orleans Saints selected defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins 12th overall in the 2016 NFL draft, he’s been compared to Aaron Donald, a 2014 first-round pick by the Los Angeles Rams. It was always an unfair comparison since few defensive tackles have ever made an immediate...

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New Orleans Saints vs Minnesota Vikings Outcome May be Determined by Run Game Success

BALTIMORE, MD – OCTOBER 21: Running Back Alvin Kamara #41 of the New Orleans Saints runs with the ball in the first quarter against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on October 21, 2018 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) The New Orleans Saints 2017 season began and ended with a loss to the Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium. The two losses were similar in several ways. Offensively, New Orleans started slow and struggled in third-down situations. On defense, they let Minnesota gain over 300 yards passing and exceed 400 total yards. The Saints and...

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How the New Orleans Saints Beat Baltimore Ravens at Their Own Game

BALTIMORE, MD – OCTOBER 21: Tight End Benjamin Watson #82 of the New Orleans Saints catches a touchdown in the second quarter against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on October 21, 2018 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) The New Orleans Saints executed an unfamiliar game plan in their gritty 24-23 win over the Baltimore Ravens. Offensively, it was their second-lowest yard and point total of the season. It wasn’t a spectacular defensive performance either, with 351 yards surrendered. But according to head coach Sean Payton, the game unfolded as he expected. “We didn’t think...

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Improving New Orleans Saints Defense Should Fare Well Against Baltimore Ravens

NEW ORLEANS, LA – OCTOBER 08: Alex Smith #11 of the Washington Redskins is pressured by Marcus Davenport #92 of the New Orleans Saints during the first half at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on October 8, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) The New Orleans Saints are coming off a four-game win streak as they head north to face the 4-2 Baltimore Ravens. A big reason for the Saints best start since 2013 has been the steady improvement of their defense. New Orleans has held their last two opponents under 20 points after surrendering an average...

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