Drew Brees isn't worried about the Saints' conspicuously heavy reliance on the passing game during a season-opening loss.
On one hand Royce Freeman Color Rush Jersey , the result begs the question of how much the four-game suspension of running back Mark Ingram is affecting New Orleans' ability to gain advantages in time of possession from running the ball. At the same time, one game does not make a trend and it's hard to be overly critical of an approach that produced 475 yards and 40 points.
If not for a couple of lost fumbles 鈥?including one on a running play that was returned for a Tampa Bay touchdown 鈥?the Saints might have pulled out their high-scoring affair with the Bucs instead of losing by eight .
Brees explained that two factors led to the Saints passing 45 times and running only 13. One was that they liked their matchups in the passing game. They also fell behind by multiple scores in the second half, which all but forces the team playing catch-up to throw more.
“That's just kind of the way that game went,” Brees said after practice on Wednesday. “The next thing I'd say is, ‘Were we efficient?’ And I'd say we were. So there's going to be games where it's lopsided in one way or the other.
”There are going to be games where we're probably running the ball more than passing it,“ Brees continued. ”And I'll ask the same question: ‘Are we efficient?’ So, if we are, if we're moving the ball, if we're scoring points, then I'd say obviously that was the right plan."
Last season, with Ingram and fellow running back Alvin Kamara operating as a Pro Bowl tandem Adidas Jake Guentzel Jersey , the Saints ranked fifth in the NFL in rushing with 129 yards per game. When their defense played well, they were able to build leads and then control the clock. That recipe helped produce an 11-win regular season and one playoff victory before they fell in the divisional round at Minnesota on the last play of the game.
While New Orleans had only 43 yards rushing last Sunday, a bright spot was the effectiveness of two running plays from within 5 yards of the end zone. Kamara scored both times. He also ran for a 2-point conversion, showing that the Saints' offensive line could get the push it needed in those situations.
Still, even Kamara had most of his production 鈥?112 yards 鈥?as a receiver. Meanwhile, Michael Thomas set a franchise single-game record with 16 receptions for 180 yards and a score.
When asked if playing from behind was the main reason for the Saints' lack of balance on offense, coach Sean Payton said, “Not just that. We also wanted to throw it when we began to see how we were getting defended.”
Against Cleveland, Payton added, “We'll look closely at the best way we think we have to move the football in this game and understand the type of defense we're playing is quite a bit different than what we just saw.”
While the Buccaneers did not generate a relentless pass rush on Brees, who was sacked only once Jim Kelly Jersey , the Browns come in with a blitz-heavy scheme and defensive end Myles Garrett. Garrett is an emerging star who had two sacks against Pittsburgh in Week 1 and who has at least one sack in each of his past three games.
Two other factors on the Saints' injury report are worth watching this week as they pertain to pass-protection against Garrett and the receiving game. Saints left tackle Terron Armstead (knee) and left guard Andrus Peat (ankle) were listed as limited in practice on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Thomas (illness) and fellow receiver Ted Ginn Jr. (knee) both missed practice. Ginn was among the Saints' top three receivers in Week 1 with five catches for 68 yards, including a 28-yard touchdown.
Browns coach Hugh Jackson said he sees little reason to doubt the Saints' ability to move the ball on the ground.
“A lot of teams are not able to throw the ball as much as they did with the success that they did” against Tampa Bay, Jackson said. “You look up when it's all said and done, and they have 40 points on the board. That's a credit to them, a credit to Drew and the rest of their offense.
”I just think they got behind,“ Jackson continued. ”We've all been in those situations where sometimes the game plan goes out the door; you do what you need to do to try to win the game.
“At the end of the day, I think they're going to still be able to run the football. They have really good runners. They've got blockers. They don't want to be as one-dimensional, but if they are going to be, they do have the right quarterback to do that.”
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Although the palatial Inglewood NFL stadium is still nearly two years from completion, the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers are ready to fill it up.
The Rams will begin season ticket sales in about two weeks for more than 50 Authentic Sam Darnold Jersey ,000 seats in the under-construction stadium at Hollywood Park, the club announced Thursday. The Chargers will put general season tickets on sale in the first week of October.
The Rams began selling the new stadium’s higher-end club seats in March, and chief operating officer Kevin Demoff said they’re moving briskly ahead of the stadium’s 2020 opening. The other 70 percent of the seating goes on sale shortly for its debut season, with the cheapest seats for Rams games starting at $60 per game with a $1,000 seat license.
Current season ticket holders get the first shot at seats in Los Angeles’ first new football-specific stadium in nearly 100 years. Every seat in the arena is likely to be sold as a season ticket with a seat license fee for Rams games, and the most expensive seats in the new sale are going for $200 apiece with a $15,000 seat license.
So while single-game sales for the Rams are likely to be limited to standing-room-only tickets, the team is still eager to fill its seats with passionate fans — preferably fans who are already season ticket holders in the Coliseum.
“That was the most important thing for us, that we don’t lose the home-field advantage,” Demoff said. “Between the roof and the building being sunk 100 feet in the ground, this building should be loud. This should be a building full of Rams fans DeShone Kizer Jersey , and you’ll be able to hear it.”
The stadium construction is proceeding briskly, according to Demoff, with some 2,500 workers currently on site and the total progress past the halfway mark to completion. Installation of the massive roof was going on last month while the Rams were playing a preseason game up at the Coliseum against the Houston Texans.
The rest of the 298-acre complex will take longer to finish, and much of it won’t be open until after the stadium debuts. That’s largely because much of the land that will house the complex’s large shopping center, offices and a hotel has been used as storage space for the stadium’s construction materials.
Demoff is optimistic everything will be operational by the time Inglewood hosts the Super Bowl on Feb. 6, 2022.
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