A San Francisco 49ers fans yell from the stands during the second quarter in the 49ers game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

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Garic: Saints fans - time to look in the mirror after 49ers loss

Kristian Garic
December 10, 2019 - 1:25 pm

Who Dat Nation, you can boo or hiss all you want, but I have to share what I’m thinking and feel.  I've just grown tired of hearing "the refs hate us" or "the refs lost the game" or "Saints season ticket holders, who sold their tickets, contributed to the loss.”  Stop for a minute. 

I get it.  Sunday's loss to the 49ers hurt a lot…in a lot of ways, but it wasn't because season ticket holders sold their seats, or because refs hate us.  How about simply acknowledging the Saints defense had no answers for San Francisco.  Period.

I believe in New Orleans we have a little PTSD from the “NOLA No Call” in the NFC Championship game.  That triggers a response in each of us…all of us.  The moment something goes wrong in a game we are quick to blame officials. 

Now, don't get me wrong...NFL officiating is awful across the board.  That wasn't the case Sunday.  There was one call that was questionable late in the game against safety Chauncey Gardner-Johnson.   One.  I will acknowledge that.  

Here’s the bottom line, the Saints defense committed two drive extending penalties for the 49ers that resulted in San Francisco taking the lead 45-40 over the Black & Gold.  The Saints gave up over 500 yards of offense to the 49ers.  San Francisco receivers were left wide open at times.  The Saints defense missed several tackles.  The 49ers converted 50% of their third down opportunities.  I could go on and on.  This loss is not on anyone other than Saints players and coaches.  When you score 46 points, you should never lose a game.  Give credit to the 49ers, they are a really good football team.  Be critical of the Saints for playing poorly on defense.  The game was out of character for that defense.  It happens.  It did.

Now to the rest of the story.  Officials don't have an agenda to hurt the Saints.  And, season ticket holders can do whatever they want with property they own (season tickets).  If I own a house, does that mean I shouldn't sell it to someone who won't take care of it as good as I do…or sell it for less to someone who might maintain it like me.  Or, should I get the market value?   I get the emotion of what happened Sunday, but it is maddening to me to see the amount time spent crafting silly arguments like the refs screwed the Saints or season ticket holders, who sold their seats, will cause us to lose home-field advantage. 

We need to hold the Saints accountable….just as Coach Sean Payton and his players are doing.  This team has and will continue to look in the mirror.  As fans, we should too.  The Who Dat Nation I know is way too smart to ignore the truth about why the Saints fell to the 49ers. ​

And, here’s the great news!  The season is far from over.  Sure, it's going to be a little bit harder to secure the number one seed in the NFC with three games left.  But, the Saints are already in the playoffs, and will host at least one game in the post-season.  Can’t we celebrate that…as the team looks to perform better every week?  Let’s face it, it could be a lot worse.  We could be living in Miami, Cincinnati, or Cleveland where they’re already talking about free agency and the draft. 

There is still plenty of football to be played by our New Orleans Saints.  Plenty to look forward to.  WHO DAT!

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