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Bobby & Deuce - 5 takeaways from Saints win vs. Bucs

Defensive dominance, Taysom's block, pursuit of the #1 seed. . .

Seth Dunlap
December 10, 2018 - 12:46 pm
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The New Orleans Saints defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 28-14 on Sunday afternoon to capture their second consecutive NFC South division title.  Here are five takeaways from that Saints win from Bobby Hebert & Deuce McAllister.

1. Taysom Hill's game changing punt block

Deuce: "It was a really nice job by the entire front for the Saints, but for Taysom Hill it was a nice job of him running a twist.  For them, Tampa Bay, they messed up the blocking assignment on the twist and Taysom Hill was able to run in and get the block.  The craziest part was, that ball went straight down so the Saints recovered there instead of towards the end zone.  That definitely changed the game.  It gave the offense a spark.  That was the turning point and the key that got them going, as far as the offense was concerned."

Bobby: "That was the kind of play they needed to spark the team at the time.  That play is going to go down as one of the significant plays of the season.  It could be in the top five in significance as far as winning back-to-back division titles in the last two years.  It was unbelievable."

2. Offensive struggles

Deuce:  "Spoiled.  I mean the fans are spoiled if you expect them to go out and score 40 points.  The other teams they're playing are NFL teams are well.  The (Saints) got in such a groove where they were scoring all the time.  Now, you see them scoring 20, 25 points and something is wrong?  The other teams are taking stuff away, and you're figuring out where you're trying to go to make stuff work."

Bobby:  "Jason Pierre Paul, he was making plays.  You want to know why?  Okay, come on.  The absence of Terron Armstead has been huge.  Right now he's in the conversation, and I think he is, the best offensive left tackle in the National Football League.  Running behind him, the Saints are so much better.  The Saints are also very inconsistent in the wide receiving corps.  Before it had been a three headed monster if you're talking Lance Moore, Marques Colston, and Devery Henderson.  I think that's something going forward we need to be more consistent.  We don't have a Jimmy Graham type tight end either.  We were on pace for a historic season, but it was almost like it was too good to be true.  We're still good, but it's a little less consistent."

3. Defensive dominance continues

Deuce: "If you've really followed this team, you know it's the defense.  I think it's 12 turnovers, 20 sacks, just in the last five weeks alone.  The adjustments they've been able to make at halftime or throughout the game (has) been really impressive.  It starts with Cam Jordan. He's drawing double teams and freeing other people up.  Sheldon Rankins has been really good.  Tyeler Davison is making it work inside.  Marcus Davenport is playing really, really well.  One place they've been hurt is the quarterback scramble, that's something they have to get cleaned up."

Bobby:  "Without a doubt, if our defense continues to play like they have the last five games we're going to win the Super Bowl.  In the playoffs if we hold the opponent to under 20 points, then shame on the Saints if they don't win.  Listen, I'm more encouraged by that than anything.  Since Sean Payton has been coach, when hold opponents to 20 or fewer points the Saints are 72-9. That is dominant."

4. Back-to-back NFC South division titles

Deuce:  "It's big in the sense that it shows you have a nice base, nice nucleus, with the organization.  After the three 7-9 seasons the change of brining Jeff Ireland in, you're starting to see it pay off.  Especially with some of those draft picks, some of those guys are playing outstanding.  Those guys are really paying off.  They can continue to hopefully build on it."

Bobby:  "That is really big because every season truly is a new season.  Back when I was playing in 1991 that was our first division title in franchise history.  We were 11-5.   The next year we were 12-4 and we were a wild card team.  The point is, it's hard to go back-to-back.  It shows you the consistenty.  Now, we're on to bigger better things.  First things first though, we won the division.  Also, congrats to Gayle Benson for winning in a division title in her first year as owner."

5. Importance of getting homefield advantage in the playoffs

Deuce:  "It's important, but it doesn't guarantee yourself a Super Bowl.  It only guarnatees you'll host throughout the NFC playoffs.  The one and two seeds, they do get byes, but it's not the end of the world if they don't get the one seed.  They need to go out these last few weeks and clinch, but it's not the end of the world if they don't clinch (the number one seed)."

Bobby:  "Look at what happened last year with Philadelphia.  They got the home games and won the Super Bowl.  Look at what happened (Sunday) night in Chicago. They were dominant at home.  But more important is getting the bye so you can be fresh.  But there's no doubt it's important.  It think getting the one or two seed is imperative for having success in the playoffs."

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