Unfortunately, I am not going to be able to get a full preview for today’s game done, due to an overload with work, so here are some cliff notes:
Total offense: 2nd (435.0 yards per game)
Scoring: 6th (27.9 points per game)
Pass offense: 3rd (304.8 YPG)
Rush offense: 6th (130.2 YPG)
Brees: 313 YPG (3rd) / 18 TDs (9th) / 10 INTs (2nd) / 68.4% completions
Ingram: 91.8 YPG (3rd) / 6 TDs / 4.8 yards per carry
Graham: 56 receptions / 66.0 YPG / 7 TDs
Total defense: 19th (366.0 YPG)
Scoring: 22nd (25.0 points per game)
Pass defense: 24th (259.2 YPG)
Rush defense: 11th (106.8 YPG)
Lofton: 82 tackles (8th) / 5 tackles for loss
Vaccaro: 46 tackles / 3 passes defended / 1 INT
Lewis: 11 passes defended (T-5th) / 1 INT
White: 6 passes defended / 2 INTs
Galette: 6.0 sacks
Jordan: 5.0 sacks
Total offense: 20th (339.8 YPG)
Scoring: T-18th (21.0 points per game)
Pass offense: 20th (222.3 YPG)
Rush offense: 12th (117.4 YPG)
Dalton: 210.0 YPG / 8 TDs / 9 INTs / 60.9% completions
Hill: 404 yards / 5 TDs / 4.7 yards per carry (Last two games as starter: 104.5 YPG / 2 TDs)
Sanu: 41 receptions / 72.0 YPG / 4 TDs
Green: 23 receptions / 62.5 YPG / 3 TDs
Total defense: 30th (391.9 YPG)
Scoring: T-18th (23.4 points per game)
Pass defense: 20th (248.9 YPG)
Rush defense: 31st (143.0)
Nelson: 61 tackles / 6 passes defended / 2 INTs
Iloka: 8 passes defended / 3 INTs
Jones: 9 passes defended / 1 INT
Dunlap: 4.5 sacks
Atkins: 1.5 sacks
Saints – Thomas (O), Robinson (O), Baker (O), Meachem (Q), Lewis (Q), Lofton (Q), Hawthorne (P)
Bengals – Bernard (O), A. Smith (D), Burfict (O), Newman (Q)
Player to Watch:
My one player to watch is Mark Ingram. He’s been dominant in the past three games as the lead back and he’ll carry the load again. Cincinnati is allowing 143 yards per game on the ground, so it’s one of the best matchups he can get. He’s run for 100 yards in three straight games, the first Saints RB to do that since Deuce McAllister in 2006. I’d expect him to make it four straight.
– The Saints have lost four games by three points or less and led within the final two minutes of each one. They could just as easily be 8-1, but reality is 4-5.
– Andre Smith being doubtful is huge. He’s one of the best left tackles in the league, so if he’s out, Cam Jordan and Junior Galette could have a big upper hand.
– While Geno Atkins is probably the heart and soul of Cincy’s defense, Vontaze Burfict isn’t far behind and he will not play. That’s a big absence for their linebacking core, which is why they are the 30th ranked run defense in the league.
– If Keenan Lewis doesn’t play, expect a lot of one on one coverage on Mohamed Sanu, while Rob Ryan gives safety help to whoever covers A.J. Green.
I think the Saints match up well against this team. Cincinnati will need a lot of production from Andy Dalton to have a chance and it’s been hard to trust him this year.
Saints – 31
Bengals – 26
As always, Who Dat?!
Follow David Billiot Jr on Twitter @DCBilliotJr