New Orleans Saints: Previewing team’s Week 12 matchup vs. Broncos

Demario Davis #56 of the New Orleans Saints (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Demario Davis #56 of the New Orleans Saints (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) /

Broncos Offense vs Saints Defense

Over the past three weeks, the Saints have allowed a grand total of 25 points combined.

In other words, they have been exceptional defensively, which is something you wouldn’t have expected to hear early on when they were an absolute mess.

All of a sudden, New Orleans ranks 4th in yards/play allowed, 9th in yards/pass attempt, and 2nd in yards/rush attempt. They’re clicking on all cylinders, and it’s not as though they’ve faced easy offenses in this hot stretch; the Bucs, 49ers, and Falcons are all extremely talented.

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The Saints have gotten tremendous production from their pass rush. They sacked Tom Brady and Matt Ryan eight times each, and it’s not just one pass rusher; Cameron Jordan, David Onyemata, Trey Hendrickson, and Marcus Davenport are all playing at a high level.

Right now, Drew Lock has one of the highest times to throw at 2.92 seconds, according to NFL Next Gen Stats. 

Thus, similarly to against the Falcons, New Orleans will have plenty of opportunities to disrupt the opposing quarterback, especially against an offensive line that has dealt with injuries at right tackle, right guard, and also is starting a rookie center in Lloyd Cushenberry.

These are matchups the Saints will need to exploit.

Overall, with receivers Jerry Jeudy and Tim Patrick, as well a fast tight end in Noah Fant, you’d expect the Broncos to move the ball consistently through the air. Rather, they rank just 25th in passing yards/attempt, as they have yet to get consistent play from the quarterback position.

As long as New Orleans’ secondary, which should get Marshon Lattimore back, continues to play up to its capabilities, this shouldn’t be one of their more difficult tests.

Also helping the Saints is Denver’s offensive approach:

Drew Lock hasn’t played well, yet he certainly hasn’t been put in a situation to succeed. If Denver continues to run the ball against a rush defense that has been excellent this season, that will force Lock into obvious passing situations.

If that is the case, New Orleans’ success accumulating sacks should continue. With that in mind, perhaps they can continue Drew Lock’s six-game streak with an interception.