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Saints – Buccaneers (10-20): The defense makes (a big) difference

New Orleans Saints (1-1) – Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-0): 10-20

The first half is mainly decided by defensive formations and penalties (8 whistles). The score changed very little (3-0 at the break) and the offensive squads happily exchanged punts after series that are struggling to develop. The third attempts are rarely converted, the passes do not often succeed, the two teams remain in expectation.

Both teams hit rock bottom when the slap box is out, Mike Evans and Marshon Lattimore are out for starting a fight and a general crowd. But if the Florida offense flounders, the defense creates five loss balls and gives Tom Brady the opportunity to find the fault. Jameis Winston’s mistakes have crucified his team.

Defenses have control of the game

The Saints offer a balanced game combining small quick passes and ground game with Mark Ingram (RB, 60 yards) and Taysom Hill (TE, 14 yards). A kind of worst case because Jameis Winston (QB, 25/40, 236 yards, 1 TD, 3 INT) does not find the rhythm on deep actions (0/2). It is however enough to take 3 points at the start of the match and control the clock, but not to widen the gap. On the defensive side, the Louisianans contain Leonard Fournette (RB, 65 yards) and prevents Tampa Bay from developing productive series. The squad even stops the desires of the Floridians on the fourth attempt during their only foray into the red zone.

Deprived of Chris Godwin and Julio Jones, the Buccaneers are therefore still forced to challenge the dangerous defense of New Orleans in the air to advance. Unfortunately, in difficulty on the offensive line, Tampa Bay concludes its first series with a fumble lost on a disagreement between Tom Brady (QB,) and his center. The passes do not succeed, the yellow handkerchiefs fly, and TB12 gets very angry on the bench.

Jameis Winston loses his footing

The second period resumes on the same basis. The lines concede few yards in the race, the passes twirl around without finding a taker, the whistles sound, the game is laborious. Yet the Buccaneers cling and in pain manage to pick up the score (3-3).

The defense then takes the match on its own. She rips the leather off Ingram as New Orleans strikes at the entrance to the red zone. Carl Nassib (DL) recovers, before Jamel Dean (CB, 5 TKL, 2 INT) twice intercepts Winston who wanted to test the depth again. Brady takes advantage of these opportunities to alert Breshad Perriman (WR, 45 yards, 1 TD) in the paint and finally take the lead (3-10) before Ryan Succop (PK, 2/2) widens the gap (3 -13). The final nail is driven by Mike Edwards (S, 3 TKL, 1 INT, 1 TD) who cuts (and relaunches) a forced pass for the third time in a few minutes (3-20).

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Anecdotally, the Saints cross the field and offer a touchdown to Michael Thomas (WR, 65 yards, 1 TD), but the game is already out of reach (10-20). Especially since in the final seconds Chris Olave (WR, 80 yards) releases the leather which is covered by Carlton Davis (CB, 9 TKL, 1 FR). A nightmare second half for New Orleans.

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