Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos cruised past the New Orleans Saints. The Saints laid a giant egg on Sunday night against the Denver Broncos. In a very important game that would have put them in a better position to make a run for the playoffs, they blew a chance to try to regain control of their season. They were beaten on both offense and defense, losing 34-14.
The same old story with the defense continued in this Week 8 matchup, as they gave up 529 yards of offense to the Broncos. The defense looked lost, they looked helpless. There was no pressure on Peyton Manning, he had enough time to sit back in the pocket and pick apart the Saints' secondary. Manning threw for 305 yards and three touchdowns. The other 223 yards came on the ground as the Broncos ran around and through the Saints.
The Saints offense forgot to show up for tonight's game. A plethora of dropped passes, a non-existent run game and a not-so-perfect Drew Brees ruined any chance the Saints had of coming back.
Let's take a look at some winners and losers from the loss against the Broncos.
Winner: Thomas Morstead
Yes, the punter. With the type of punishment the Saints took tonight, not much good was seen. Morstead had a robot-leg tonight, averaging 52 yards per punt, consistently putting the Broncos in bad field position. Now if only the defense was capable of taking advantage of that.
Loser: Patrick Robinson
Did Robinson forgot how to play his position? He got burnt for most of the game. Demaryius Thomas burned him, as did Eric Decker for a one-yard touchdown grab.
Robinson was beaten badly twice in the first half, and both times led to a Broncos score. Thomas badly beat Robinson on a 41-yard reception in the first quarter, and another time for 34 yards. It was not Robinson's night, but again, it hasn't been all season long.
Winner: Akiem Nicks
There wasn't much positive coming out of the defensive side of the ball in Sunday night's loss, but rookie third-round pick Akiem Nicks had a nice game.
A key play Nicks made, that led to a turnover and a Saints touchdown, was when he laid a good hit on running back Willis McGahee that jarred the ball loose.
Loser: Drew Brees
With 22-of-42 for 213 yards, two touchdowns, an interception and two fumbles, Drew Brees was not himself. He could not bail out the New Orleans Saints this time around.
What was supposed to be a shootout between two great quarterbacks turned out to be one sided as Peyton Manning out-dueled Brees. Brees had an off night, overthrowing his receivers, and was unable to get the Saints offense going.
Loser: Saints offense
Dropped passes continued to plague the Saints receiving corp on Sunday night. There were at least three key dropped passes, one by Jimmy Graham, the others by Lance Moore and Devery Henderson.
The Saints, who are good at converting on third downs (second best in the NFL with 48 percent), were only able to convert 1-of-12 on third downs tonight.
The run game had a couple of good moments but were inconsistent and almost non-existent once again.
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