Momentum Swings Kill
Let’s see if we get this right. There were several points in the game where the Saints were in position to potentially do something, but then disaster struck.
Before: The Saints were at the Panthers 28-yard line with a 3rd & 8
After: Drew Brees is sacked by Greg Hardy for an 11-yard loss, forcing the Saints to opt for a punt, which would only net 19 yards due to the Thomas Morstead touchback.
Before: The Saints were at their own 36-yard line with a 3rd & 6
After: Thomas Davis interception of Brees directly leads to the next play being a 43-yard dash by Deangelo Williams for a Panthers touchdown, putting them up 7-6.
Before: The Saints were driving during the opening kickoff of the 2nd half, and had a 1st & 10 at the Panthers 26-yard line
After: Zac Strief is called for a horrible unneccessary roughness penalty, which would take the Saints out of field goal range, and the ensuing fake field goal attempt would be turnover on downs.
It’s common to see things happen like this, but you can’t help but wonder what might have happened if these points weren’t left off the board.