The New Orleans Saints avoided an 0-2 start to their season narrowly, squeezing past the Cleveland Browns 21-18 on Sunday. The Browns challenged the Saints in almost every way, mentally and physically outplaying them for a good three quarters of football.
However, it’s the finish that matters in football.
Every week here at Full Press Coverage, I will be handing out three game balls to the top Saints performers who played well. This week, while there were a lot of negative aspects to look at, we are going to talk about the positives.
Game Ball One: QB Drew Brees
There seems to be one player that has single-handedly carried this team to victory week after week for twelve years. It’s still no different. Drew Brees put the team on his back for the second straight week, and played almost flawlessly. Brees completed 28 of his 35 pass attempts for 243 yards and 2 scores. He has yet to turn the football over this season, and that was crucial to this game.
Brees makes key decisions and does so rapidly and consistently. His arm strength is still there, as he can still stretch the field. He looks like he might still have a couple good years left in him.
Game Ball Two: DE Cameron Jordan
The Saints pass rush failed to get a single sack on Ryan Fitzpatrick against the Buccaneers week one. Cameron Jordan made sure that no sacks didn’t happen again. The Browns rookie left tackle out of West Georgia, Desmond Harrison, gave up five sacks against the Steelers in week one, and he gave up another two to Jordan.
Jordan played determined and convicted, adding another two tackles to go with his double sack day. Jordan breathed life into this defense, and got a pass rush going to harass Browns quarterback Tyrod Taylor.
Game Ball Three: RB Alvin Kamara
Game balls aren’t all about statistics or stars. Game balls are given to players who impacted the team in all positive ways throughout the game. Alvin Kamara may not have had an eye popping stat line, but he certainly made things happen throughout the game.
Kamara made critical catches on three separate occasions where he had to be a playmaker and make things happen to pick up first downs. His sheer determination and effort was impressive alone. Then, later in the game, he scored the two point conversion that gave the Saints a six point lead and ended up being crucial to the game.
Kamara ran for 46 yards, and added 6 receptions on 6 targets for 53 yards.
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