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Week 3 Saints Vs Chiefs Halftime Observations
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Blog posted 9/23/2012 by SaintsTailgate

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We went into this game knowing pretty much what the Chiefs would throw at us, and a week to prepare for it. The bottom line is that game films are your worst enemy, when they show all your weaknesses the next team shows up and exploits them all over again. Colston is out for the game, and "you-know-who" has a case of the "dropsy’s". The other defenses know to double-team Jimmy and will be on him like dirty on rice, so the question is did we learn anything from the last two losses we had?.

The Chiefs are already rolling using McCluster to set up the pass and they won’t stop running until we force them to. In the past two games we didn't have much success in that area and expect Kansas City to make us honest today. Today we're seeing more balls run out of the endzone than we have in both entire games, with a notable difference. Thomas Morstead rarely allows runback attempts but at least the Saints aren't paying dearly for them. It appears that the players on bhoth sides are getting rusty at getting past the 20 on the return. 2 of the first 3 runbacks never made it back to the 20 yard line, and the average yards per return is poor.

We started off the second quarter ahead 10-3; that was a welcome change from playing catchup ball, but it only counts if we hang on to the lead and increase it. For whatever reason our offense didn’t start off this season creating back to back late scoring drives to pull ahead in a losing game, and that helped us end up with the two losses. Until we get that old black magic back we’re better off getting the lead early, running a balanced offence and holding on to it.

The Chiefs tried a delayed blitz about 3 minutes into the 2nd quarter that had Drew Brees eating dirt; they’ll be pulling that the rest of the game. Here’s another area the game films hurt us, and the Saints Oline still isn’t getting the job done. Drew already had a Chiefs player land on his sore ankle in the last hit, and you have to wonder how much of this punishment he can take.

On a side note it took the ref’s 21 minutes to make their first holding call against the Chiefs, on the Chief’s first drive Dexter McCluster had up-field blocking that was herding the Saints defender ahead of Dexter’s run while hanging on to the top corner of the jersey so the defender couldn’t get separation. I'm afraid a precident is being set of too much focus on the ball itself and not enough away from it.

Clear offensive pass interference by Brandon Flowers went completely un-noticed, so in this case I have to wonder just where the hell the ref's are looking. Once again a Saints first down got shot all to hell in a handbasket, and our next punt's not far away. Offensive holding by the Chiefs Oline during a pass play was the next one the ref’s missed. Missed calls by the ref’s helped contribute to two back to back drives that only netted 15 yards total, and even a lead doesn't make me feel that secure.

I’ve been waiting for a pattern to develop of the receivers hanging on to the ball after all the drops we had the first two weeks, and so far so good. JUst guessing I would say we have seen twice the number of clean catches by ratio that we've hadf the past two weeks. Another good sign is that Pierre Thomas is once again making explosive plays as well as doing some fine blocking when it’s needed. Our last drive of the first half is in progress and Thomas is paving the way for another score if we can just avoid mistakes. Drew’s accuracy is better so far, and so is his decision making process.

Bingo, Pierre Thomas for the TD! KC’s defense is starting to fade, but they may come back in the 2nd half. As the ref’s check the replay we’ll have to wait to see where we are at the end of the half. TD reversed, 3rd & 8. Sweet Jesus, a big defensive play & it FG time. Wide right, and the Chiefs get a huge break and we first lose 6 points, then 3 and turn over the ball empty handed.

We sure can’t keep missing as many tackles as we did in the 1st half. At this point it’s still our game to win, and our game to lose. In the second half the players need to settle down and be consistent, and we can come out of this one with a win at home.

Great plays on the QB in the last Chief’s possession give’s Junior Galette a turnover, and it’s off to the locker room with a lead, but is it enough? The Saints didn't make much of a statement in the first half, and I doubt they convinced the Chiefs that "resistance is futile".

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