Jordan capped off his seventh Pro Bowl year with 12.5 sacks, 69 combined tackles, 13 tackles for loss, 22 quarterback hits, and six passes defended.
His sack counts started raining in after he missed Week 14 due to COVID-19, which was a strange coincidence at the time. Could Jordan have gotten that much stronger after contracting the virus?
Unfortunately, this is no Spiderman situation. Jordan’s dominance in the final stretch of the season stemmed from the NOLA Saints getting two key players back in the lineup: Marcus Davenport and David Onyemata.
New Orleans Saints’ Cam Jordan partially credits teammates for his sack production
If Jordan was struggling to sack the quarterback early in the year, it was because he was being double or triple-teamed by opposing offenses. Jordan was the Saints’ only reliable defensive end during one stretch of the season when Davenport missed time due to a chest injury and Onyemata was serving a six-game suspension for violating the NFL’s performance-enhancing drug policy.
From Week 2 to Week 5, when neither Davenport nor Onyemata played, Jordan recorded zero sacks.
He notched his first of the season in Week 7 — which happened to be Davenport’s first game back from injury as well.
With Davenport and Onyemata now steady in the rotation, Jordan got more one-on-one matchups and he showed the league what he was capable of all season. He just needed the right teammates to back him up.
The Saints still have rookie talent Payton Turner to develop on the edge, and maybe Turner could one day fill Jordan’s shoes.
That day won’t come for a while, though.
Jordan and his tight-knit unit of defensive ends will pick up right where they left off for next season, when they should all be at full strength and ready to wreak havoc all year round.