NFC Wild Card: Saints Snap Counts and Observations

The Saints got their first postseason win against the Bears after two previously failed attempts. Here's a closer look at the snap counts and observations from the game.
Author:
Publish date:

The Saints are marching on to the Divisional Playoff Round after taking care of the Bears 21-9 on Sunday afternoon. It was a game that was a bit nerve-racking for many, but New Orleans overcame some sluggish offensive play and was complimented well by a strong defensive effort to get the win. We take a further look at the snap counts and playing time percentages, as we wrap a bow on this game. 

Offense

  • Andrus Peat, Ryan Ramczyk, Cesar Ruiz, Erik McCoy, Terron Armstead - 84 (100%)
    It was a mixed bag from the interior offensive line, as Brees was sacked just once, but was also under duress on a good bit of his dropbacks. New Orleans ended up finishing with 123 rushing yards, but most of that came in the second half. The offensive line will have to be better against the Bucs, but were average at best on the day.
  • Drew Brees - 79 (94%)
    Brees had a decent game, finishing 28-of-39 for 265 yards and 2 touchdowns, good for a 107.3 rating. There were some moments you could tell the offense couldn't get set properly pre-snap, but looked more effective in the second half. The Saints offense finished 11-of-17 on 3rd Down, which is pretty stellar.
  • Alvin Kamara - 59 (70%)
    After not knowing whether he'd play or not early on in the week, Kamara played in this game and looked like he didn't miss a beat. The Bears had a pretty good answer for him early, but he's a guy you simply can't contain. AK41 had 99 yards rushing on 23 attempts and a score, adding 17 yards on 2 catches in the receiving department.
  • Michael Thomas - 56 (67%)
    Getting Thomas back was a great thing for the Saints, as he picked up right where he left off. He got involved early, which was a key thing for New Orleans. Thomas was targeted 7 times and caught 5 balls for 73 yards and a score. The 38-yard hookup from Brees was one of the best plays of his season, making a great adjustment on the pass.
  • Emmanuel Sanders - 55 (65%)
    Sanders was relatively quiet on the day, being targeted 3 times and only catching 2 passes for 3 yards. He'll likely see more involvement against the Bucs, but this wasn't one of his good games whatsoever.
  • Lil'Jordan Humphrey - 45 (54%)
    Humphrey was used a lot in run blocking on the day, but did run some routes. He had one of the best plays of game taking a 3rd Down pass from Brees for a first down after gaining 14. It was a good adjustment on the Brees pass and even better individual effort from him. With Tre'Quan Smith likely returning, it'll be interesting if Humphrey gets to play. He's definitely improving.
  • Jared Cook - 40 (48%)
    Cook caught 4 passes for 40 yards after being targeted 7 times. There were some struggles early between him and Brees, but they connected on some good plays.
  • Adam Trautman - 31 (37%)
    Just one catch for 4 yards in Trautman's playoff debut. He was targeted 3 times. 
  • Deonte Harris - 24 (29%)
    The return of Harris proved to be a big impact for the Saints, as he finished with 7 catches for 83 yards, securing all of his targets. Harris was instrumental in converting some 3rd Down plays, and helped the return game coming back. If the Saints can get all of their receivers going at the right time, then this will be a nightmare for opposing defenses.
  • Josh Hill, Marquez Callaway - 23 (27%)
  • Taysom Hill - 21 (25%)
    Hill lost a fumble that was originally ruled an interception on a play that he will undoubtedly want to have back. He had the deep post and another conversion to Trautman, but didn't pull the trigger fast enough. He finished with 4 rushes for 15 yards and 2 catches for 5 yards. 
  • Latavius Murray - 19 (23%)
    Murray left the game early with what was deemed a thigh injury. However, he carried the ball 4 times for 9 yards and had 2 catches for 11 yards before leaving. Undoubtedly one of the game's biggest plays saw him block Khalil Mack and fall to the ground, but hung in there with Brees to get a catch and take it into the end zone. It was reminiscent of the Vikings game on Christmas. His status will be one to monitor as the week progresses.
  • James Hurst - 16 (19%)
  • Michael Burton - 13 (15%)
    Burton had 2 catches for 15 yards on 2 targets. Fullbacks everywhere, rejoice.

Defense

  • Alex Anzalone, Malcolm Jenkins, Janoris Jenkins, Demario Davis, Marshon Lattimore, Marcus Williams - 50 (100%)
    For starters, it was a good sign seeing Anzalone play a good game. He didn't have much in the tackle depart (2 stops), but he practically aced the first big test without Kwon Alexander. Malcolm Jenkins had a scoop and score taken off the board, finishing with a QB hit and 3 tackles (2 solo, 1 assisted). Janoris Jenkins played pretty well, having 5 solo stops and a big pass defense. Lattimore had 2 pass breakups and 2 solo stops, and overall the secondary was key for holding the Bears to just 150 yards with 2 minutes to go and keeping them from getting 3rd Down pickups (0-of-9 until the final drive).
  • C.J. Gardner-Johnson - 49 (98%)
    I have no idea what Ceedy Duce says to people on the field, but he's becoming the biggest instigator in the league. He got Anthony Miller ejected after throwing a punch. Any time you have a coach making it a point if emphasis to his players about the importance of keeping your cool around someone like Gardner-Johnson, then you know you've made it. He led the Saints on the day with 8 tackles (6 solo, 2 assisted).
  • Cam Jordan, Marcus Davenport - 32 (64%)
    No sack production from either of these guys, but Jordan did finish with 5 solo tackles on the day. Davenport had 2 total tackles (1 solo, 1 assisted). Getting Trey Hendrickson back will be big for this team.
  • Carl Granderson - 30 (60%)
  • David Onyemata - 24 (48%)
  • Sheldon Rankins - 22 (44%)
    Rankins got a big sack, the team's only one, and had 2 solo stops to go along with 2 QB hits and a tackle for loss. Seeing him heat up at the right time is a great thing.
  • Malcom Brown - 21 (42%)
  • P.J. Williams - 20 (40%)
  • Shy Tuttle - 13 (26%)
  • Kaden Elliss - 6 (12%)
  • Zack Baun - 1 (2%)

Special Teams (Top Reps)

  • Kaden Elliss, Justin Hardee, Craig Robertson - 18
  • J.T. Gray - 17
  • Dwayne Washington - 16
  • Zack Baun, Chase Hansen - 12