They responded questions. They glimpsed highlights. They relived the distress that have been processed, cataloged, lodged away — after which, on a micro stage, did so once more on Sunday. With about six mins left in the second one quarter, Trey Hendrickson stripped the ball from Rams quarterback Jared Goff on the Saints’ 19-yard line. Cam Jordan scooped it up and ran it again for a landing — or so he concept.
The play have been blown useless as an incompletion, and so although the Saints had been granted ownership after video evaluation reversed the decision to a fumble, they got the ball at their very own 13, the place Jordan recovered the ball. As a substitute of taking the lead, they became the ball over on downs, and the Rams, capitalizing on a brief discipline, kicked a discipline target to head up, 6-Three, at halftime.
“The issues we will regulate as coaches are the issues that I simply alluded to,” mentioned Payton, referencing the Saints’ 11 consequences, deficient operating sport (20 carries, 57 yards) and power allowed. “After we get deficient officiating or an terrible name like that, we will’t regulate that.”
It used to be Jordan who hinted of an officiating bias in opposition to the Saints after the N.F.C. championship sport loss, acknowledging the staff’s combative courting with the league that dates to Bountygate, when contributors of the staff’s training team of workers had been decided to have rewarded avid gamers who injured warring parties. Jordan once more derided the officers on Sunday, evaluating them to Foot Locker workers (who put on black-and-white striped shirts) and pronouncing he by no means heard the whistle.
“I’m positive the N.F.L. will pop out with every other remark about it,” Jordan mentioned.
The non-call that afternoon final 12 months in New Orleans used to be so egregious that — with the enter of Payton, a member of the league’s festival committee — the foundations had been modified for this season, with coaches authorised to problem an reputable’s judgment when cross interference isn’t referred to as. (Alternatively tempted he may were on Sunday, Payton didn’t problem the primary cross play.) Via including a subjective part to replay, that experiment has created issues whilst fixing others, but it surely a minimum of seeks to right kind a unsuitable.
There’s no mechanism in position to opposite what came about on Sunday, or in Week 1 when the Saints performed Houston and must have had 15 further seconds as they moved quickly to check out to attain ahead of halftime. Wil Lutz overlooked an extended field-goal try, however redeemed himself through making an extended one, the 58-yard sport winner, as time expired.
With Teddy Bridgewater useless in the back of that suffering line in aid of Brees on Sunday, going 17 of 30 for 165 yards, Lutz provided the Saints’ offense, kicking 3 discipline targets. The primary two stored the rating shut, at 6-6, halfway into the 3rd quarter. The 3rd got here after Todd Gurley and Brandin Chefs scored touchdowns on consecutive drives, taking a 20-6 lead that New Orleans by no means threatened.
Around the previous 22 months, the Rams and the Saints have performed 4 occasions — the Rams successful 3 — setting up a contention between two productive offenses coached through cutting edge masterminds named Sean. The Rams would like their trainer, Sean McVay, and quarterback, Goff, to replicate the good fortune and longevity of Payton and Brees in New Orleans. The Saints, having gained a Tremendous Bowl and been disadvantaged of a possibility at a 2nd, need excellent information about their big name quarterback and a blank sport already.