October 29, 2009

More Saints notes going into first divisional match on Monday Night Football

  • Congratulate Saints free safety Darren Sharper for being named NFC Defensive Player of the Month. In three games, Sharper intercepted three passes for two touchdowns.

  • Though its hardly the only thing the refs screwed up in Miami, Sharper's 11th career interception return for a touchdown was a badly blown call, according to this article with a damning picture. Line judge Ron Marinucci had a perfect view of the play, which should have been ruled a touchback, and just blew it. It was almost as believable as this, which awarded the Dolphins a first down on a pass that was obviously dropped.

  • Sharper is one interception return touchdown away from tying Rod Woodson for the league career record.

  • QB Drew Brees has suffered nine sacks this season, but five of them came against the Dolphins. LT Jermon Bushrod struggled at times and was protected by tight ends and chip-blocking runningbacks. For as much as the Saints' defense gave the NFL an example on how to shut down the Wildcat offense, the Dolphins might have given the NFL an example on how to drop Drew Brees.

    Bushrod had problems with the Dolphins' Joey Porter last week and will have another big challenge from the Falcons' John Abraham on prime time TV.

  • The Falcons have signed free agent RB Aaron Stecker, who played five years with the Saints, most recently six games in 2008. The Falcons are a bit dinged up at runningback and fullback, and Stecker, 33, will provide good depth. It doesn't hurt that Falcons play Stecker's old team Monday night, and could use some of his insight.

  • WR Marques Colston leads the NFL in one very significant category: on passes of 20+ yards, Colston has caught 4 of 6 passes, 67%. That's tied with Denver WR Jabar Gaffney for best in the NFL.

  • Former Saints coach Jim Haslett's Florida Tuskers of the UFL are talking some serious smack pointed at the winless Buccaneers. The Tuskers undefeated in the UFL's inaugural season. The Bucs are getting challenged, from an ex-Buc RB for the Tuskers insisting they could beat Tampa Bay to Haslett himself taking potshots at personnel moves. Ouch.

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