The New Orleans Saints enjoyed their first win of the 2012 season last night, pulling out a 31-24 win over the San Diego Chargers when truthfully all looked lost early in the second half. This is the kind of win we’ve been looking for, one that comes from some timely defensive plays and a little bit of offense. Highlight include:
1) Drew Brees broke the Johnny Unitas record for consecutive games with a touchdown pass on a 40-yard completion to Devery Henderson.
2) The Bree-Colston connection came out in full force as the duo combined for three touchdowns on the night.
3) The Saints defense, maligned and abused all season, came up big in the late stages of the game with two turnovers. The first came on a Roman Harper interception, courtesy of a tip by Malcolm Jenkins. The second may have been even better as the defensive lineman Martez Wilson sacked Philip Rivers and recovered the ensuing fumble.
The Saints now have two weeks to prepare for back to back road games and the feeling around the franchise has to be a little lighter. But there’s real work to be done here. On Oct 21st the Saints will travel to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in an important NFC South contest. Make no mistake, there’s very little room for New Orleans to lose any games, let alone divisional games, and the Buccaneers are ripe for the picking. From there, it’s on to Denver where two things have to happen. One, the Saints offense must be very productive against a very good Broncos defense. Two, the Saints defense has to get to Peyton manning and disrupt any flow he might develop.
If the Saints can get to 4-4 by the midway point of the season, or even 6-6 by twelve games in, they could get on a streak and make the playoffs. An NFC South Championship is probably already out of the question barring a total Atlanta collapse, but a playoff run is still within reach.