It was déjà vu for Saints fans on Thursday night in their preseason opener against the Cleveland Browns. Another game lost in the final moments due to a single crucial mistake.
For those who missed it, DeShone Kizer threw a beautiful 45 yard bomb on 4th down to take the lead with 1:52 left in the game.
And granted, it is only a pre-season game. But it’s just another example of the Saints as a team not knowing how to win games.
You could hang all the blame on Damian Swann, the corner who got (badly) beat for the winning score. But why would we put him on an island on 4th down with a one point lead?
This team clearly has a penchant for disastrous losses, as evidenced by last year’s last-minute losses to the Raiders, Giants and the Broncos.
And while 3 losses might not seem all that significant,10-6 looks very different to 7-9.
So with all of these horrendous Saints gaffes in mind, it begs the question of whether or not the Saints should be more conservative in these crucial situations.
I understand that it must be hard for a defensive coordinator not to play the run, or at least go after the quarterback on 4th and short.
But with the Saints’ well-documented struggles on defense, the team has to provide insurance against the types of big plays that continue to lose games.
They can’t sell-out on the blitz if it’s going to mean they lose another game in the final minutes.
And yeah yeah, hindsight is 20/20 and all that. But foresight is pretty useful too. Applying knowledge from past events to estimate the outcome of a future event is essential to the learning process.
And if the Saints don’t use their foresight, they will never learn.