All that said, in our best seasons our offense didn’t put us in harm’s way. Last season the offense put undue pressure on the defense. Turnovers in critical situations and turnovers in poor field position often led to easy points for the opposition.
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Case in point – in 2 consecutive weeks, we faced the two teams from the previous year’s Super Bowl, the Carolina Panthers and the Denver Broncos. We scored a total of 43 points in those 2 games. Not out of the realm of possibility, seeing as these were 2 very good defenses. And people will remember the big special teams gaffes being so important. A blocked field goal attempt returned for big yardage against Carolina. A blocked PAT attempt returned for two points causing the loss against Denver. But do we remember the whole game?
Against Denver, early in the 2nd quarter, the Saints threw their second interception of the game at their own 39-yard line. That led to an easy Denver 3 points. Two fourth quarter fumbles deep in our own territory and a possession of -5 yards and a punt. That put Denver basically at midfield and led to 13 Denver points. It was this writer’s opinion that the offensive miscues and short fields put the Saints defense back on the field much sooner than they’d like. And on roller skates since Denver had momentum. Offense lost that game, not defense.
At Carolina on a short week, we took the ball to open the game 7 yards in the first 5 plays and fumbled. That led to a chip shot field goal. We later threw an interception on our own 34-yard line which led to a FG and a blocked FG which led to a TD on a very short field. We can hang the blocked FG on the special teams, but this game was decided by 3 points and we gave away 3 points to open the game.