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Keys to the Game: Saints vs. Panthers

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X-Factor

Dec 15, 2013; St. Louis, MO, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees (9) looks to pass as St. Louis Rams defensive end Chris Long (91) defends during the second half at the Edward Jones Dome. The Rams defeated the Saints 27-16. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

I’m not changing the fact that Drew Brees will be the biggest reason the Saints win or lose here. Just to echo what I said the last week in my Keys to the Game:

"Let’s also point out that in the three losses on the road, Brees has thrown half of his interceptions (4) this season, and the Saints have had five turnovers total (Brees fumble in Seattle) in losses."

Last week was no exception, as Brees had two interceptions and a lost fumble. Arguably, you can place a ton of blame on Charles Brown, but ultimately the quarterback is the most scrutinized position in football. Like a true leader, Brees took responsibility for a ton of woes from last week.

There may be a few things to remember on Brees against the Panthers, specifically in his road game performances with the Saints.

  • 2012 (L 35-27): 31/49, 325 yards, TD, 2INT
  • 2011 (W 30-27): 32/45, 359 yards, 2TD, 1INT
  • 2010 (W 24-3): 27/43, 253 yards, 2TD, 1INT
  • 2009: DID NOT PLAY 
  • 2008 (L 30-7): 21/39, 231 yards, INT
  • 2007 (W 31-6): 24/36, 260 yards, 3TD, INT
  • 2006 (L 31-21): 4/5, 46 yards

It’s tough to think that Brees will not attempt another 40+ attempts in this game, even if the weather gets bad, but perhaps the TD:INT ratio is something to think about. I mean to think, this is a first ballot future hall of fame quarterback who hasn’t had 3TDs or more against one of his nemesis since 2007.

Simply put, Brees has to have an almost perfect outing.

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