New Orleans Saints Winners and Losers vs. the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jonathan PeraltaContributor IIIOctober 22, 2012

TAMPA, FL - OCTOBER 21: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New Orleans Saints line up during a game  at Raymond James Stadium on October 21, 2012 in Tampa, Florida.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Before I begin—wow. Drew Brees is just...incredible.

He's a machine, for lack of a better word, continuing his stellar play. No. 9 got the New Orleans Saints offense on a roll and led the team to its second win of the season against division rivals Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

It was quite the game. You have Jonathan Vilma coming back for his first game of the season, you have a division rival, and you had the New Orleans Saints down 14-0 in an instant. What started off to look like a long day turned out to be something opposite. Of course,the Saints defense was frustrating, but, again, they had a bend-not-break mentality at the end when it counted.

It was a big game, and a big win. A win is a win, but let's just take a look at a few winners and losers from Sunday's game against the Bucs.


Hero: Malcolm Jenkins

A play that could have gone awry was saved by safety Malcolm Jenkins. He saved a touchdown by tracking down and tackling wide receiver Vincent Jackson on a 95-yard reception. Yes, it was a long pass play that shouldn't have happened, but the Bucs came out with zero points on that drive.


Loser: The Saints Defense 

The Saints defense continues to have problems. They did an excellent job of making the Tampa Bay Bucs offense look good in the first half. Yes, they prevented the Bucs from scoring when it counted and were able to preserve the win, but they allowed the Buccaneers to gain a total of 513 yards.

Bucs quarterback Josh Freeman threw for a career-high 420 yards. Josh Freeman! The game had to come down to a heart-stopping last play where Freeman marched the Bucs down from their own 19-yard-line to the Saints' nine.

The defense was able to to hold off the Bucs, but it was too close for comfort.


Hero: Drew Brees

The Saints needed this win big time. They had to come off their bye and get this win in order to make some sort of run for the playoffs. Drew Brees led the Saints to their second win of the season.

Whoever drafted Drew Brees in their fantasy football squad was loving No. 9 on Sunday. He threw for 377 yards and four touchdowns, completed passes to seven different players, and led the Saints to a come-from-behind victory. Not shocking. Brees has been carrying this team for years, and he has done it again.


Loser: Saints Secondary

Yes, the defense was already mentioned, but the Saints secondary made Bucs quarterback Josh Freeman look like, well, Drew Brees. Freeman ended up with 420 yards passing and threw three touchdowns.

Oh, and, the secondary got burnt to a crisp by wide receiver Vincent Jackson all day. The wideout finished the game with seven receptions for 216 yards and a touchdown.


Heroes: Lance Moore and Devery Henderson

As always, the wide receivers played a huge part in the Saints' offensive success and Drew Brees' success. But when you think of big time Saints' playmakers, you think Marques Colston and tight end Jimmy Graham.

Not this time. On Sunday, wideouts Lance Moore and Devery Henderson played huge roles on the offense.

Lance Moore finished the game with nine receptions for 121 yards. Devery Henderson finished the day with three receptions, but gained 75 yards, averaging 25 yards per catch.


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