The 2015 New Orleans Saints have become the most penalized team in the Sean Payton era.
While we automatically flock to Brandon Browner being the main culprit of the Saints super flag fest this season, the reality is that this year’s squad has surpassed all earlier ones under Sean Payton. The team’s 12 penalties on Sunday tied a season high that occurred in consecutive weeks against the New York Giants and Indianapolis Colts.
Thanks to NFL Penalties, we take a look at some stats when it comes to those cursed yellow flags we have grown to hate.
Flag summary by season (Since 2009)
- 2009 – 118 total flags, 107 accepted (938 yards) – 10th overall
- 2010 – 117 total flags, 95 accepted (918 yards) – T-19th overall
- 2011 – 113 total flags, 102 accepted (869 yards) – T-19th overall
- 2012 – 112 total flags, 100 accepted (876 yards) – 22nd overall
- 2013 – 118 total flags, 110 accepted (976 yards) – T-9th overall
- 2014 – 101 total flags, 80 accepted (670 yards) – 31st overall
- 2015 – 128 total flags, 115 accepted (999 yards) – 3rd overall
2006-2008 weren’t even in the same ballpark, as the New Orleans Saints tallied 79, 68, and 86 penalties in each of those seasons. The 3rd overall ranking is only behind the Buffalo Bills (124 accepted for 1,086 yards) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (125 accepted for 1,027 yards).
Top 5 offenders
- Brandon Browner, CB (20-203, 2 declined)
- Delvin Breaux, CB (9-73, 1 declined)
- Zach Strief, RT (8-50)
- Kyle Wilson, CB (7-82)
- Bobby Richardson, DE (5-35)
- Defensive back (49-487)
- Offensive line (20-135)
- Defensive line (9-65)
- Linebacker (8-90)
- Wide receiver (7-56)
Top 5 categories
- Defensive holding (18-83)
- False start (18-90)
- Offensive holding (13-130)
- Defensive pass interference (8-141)
- 15-yard face mask (6-79)
The New Orleans Saints now average 10 flags per game this season, and 38 of the team’s penalties are pre-snap errors. Further breakdown of the team’s 115 penalties shows 52 at home and 63 on the road. On the flip side, the team has been the beneficiary of 92 total penalties for 708 yards.
With three games to go for the black and gold, you can most assuredly guarantee that the penalties will keep coming. Such is the growing pains experienced with so much turnover on the roster, especially a host of rookies.
One final thing to keep an eye on for the Saints upcoming matchup is that the Detroit Lions are one of the least penalized teams in the league at 83 total.