The last meeting (December 21, 2008) between these two teams was one to remember. Records were set for both clubs as the Saints 42-7 routing of the Lions solidified Detroit’s place as the first 0-15 team in league history.
New Orleans tied a team record with 32 first downs, never punting. The Saints had the best success on third down of any team since 1991 and broke the team record with their 50th TD of the year, finishing the game with 53.
Next Meeting: Sunday, September 13th, 2009
Location: Louisiana Superdome
Series Leader: The Saints evened the series at Detroit last season bringing the all time record to 9-9-1 between the two clubs.
Offensive Keys To Success: There is not much that the Saints need to change offensively heading into this next game. After all New Orleans totaled 532 total yards of offense, 351 yards through the air, and another 181 yards on the ground. In a display of just how dangerous this offense can be the team totaled 6 touchdowns on the day, running in 4 by 4 different Saints. Drew Brees then pitched in two touchdowns of his own by connecting with receiver Marques Colston twice on successive drives in the third quarter. If it’s not broke don’t fix it!
Defensive Keys To Success: The Saints defense actually played a pretty decent game against Detroit last season, a rarity amongst what was a consistently bad squad. New Orleans only gave up 255 yards of offense to the Lions and one lone touchdown to rookie runner Kevin Smith. Lions quarterback Dan Orlovsky was picked of twice by the unit completing only 10 of 23 passes before being benched in the fourth quarter.The Saints must do a better job stopping the run and containing Smith. Smith ran all over them posting 111 yards on 24carries, averaging 4.6 yards a carry. Orlovsky will no longer be the starting quarterback as it appears the Lions first round pick Matthew Stafford will be the starter heading into the 2009 season. It’s not clear how good Stafford will be but I don’t expect him to post big numbers as long as the Saints shut down his top receiving weapon in Calvin Johnson.
Game Stats From Last Meeting: http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/boxscore?gameId=281221008
Prediction: Just like the last meeting I expect the Saints to handle the Lions pretty easily at home, 34-6.
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