The Saints Need Cam Jordan to Deliver Sacks

The New Orleans defense will remain an average unit, unless Cam Jordan can help lead them out of their sack woes.
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Cam Jordan is a leader for the New Orleans Saints.

Cam Jordan embodies the DNA of being a Saint and resident of New Orleans.

Cam Jordan has the energy, passion, and eccentricity we love and respect.

Albeit, where are Cam Jordan and his sacks?

New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan (94)

New Orleans is 30th in sacks (6), 4th in QB knockdowns (21), 13th in blitzes (48), 13th in missed tackles (25), 14th in pressures (41), and 18th in QB hurries (14) for 2021.

Middle-of-the-road defensive numbers and serving a 2-2 record.

Tanoh Kpassagnon has two sacks. Then again, Marcus Davenport, Payton Turner, Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, and Bradley Roby each notched one sack.

Cameron Jordan has not sacked a quarterback.  0 sacks in 4 contests.

He's been very close on multiple occasions, but for this defense, that's not close enough.

He has missed on Aaron Rodgers, Sam Darnold, Mac Jones, and Daniel Jones.

Why?

New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan (94)

IS IT JUST THE DOUBLE TEAMS?

While I watch and re-watch the Saints video, you can see Jordan closing in on the opposing quarterbacks and at times affecting them. Unfortunately, he's been a step behind recording a sack or just able to get the QB hit.

Currently, Jordan is in his 11th NFL season and has aged well at 32.

Last season, Jordan referred to his drop in production as due to the double teams he received from offensive linemen.

Still, Trey Hendrickson and his 13.5 sacks flourished while subbing for the injured Marcus Davenport for most of the season. 

Hendrickson is in a similar role with Cincinnati and has six tackles, 2.5 sacks, 6 QB Hits, 1 TFL, and one forced fumble through four games.

Jordan's 2021 has given New Orleans 14 tackles, 6 QB Hits, and 2 TFLs.

So that we are fair to Jordan, compare his, Hendrickson, and Davenport's production from the 2020 season in New Orleans.

  • Jordan: 7.5 sacks, 16 QB Hits, 11 TFL, 1 Forced Fumble (16 Games)
  • Hendrickson: 13.5 sacks, 25 QB Hits, 12 TFL, 1 Forced Fumble (15 Games)
  • Davenport: 1.5 sacks, 8 QB Hits, 3 TFL, 0 Forced Fumbles (11 Games)

If double teams are the issue, then how are other pass rushers handling the scheme.

The reigning Defensive Player of the Year, Aaron Donald, 29, at one point was drawing double teams at a 70.5% rate in 2020. He was able to record 13.5 sacks, and 28 QB Hits from the defensive tackle position.

New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan (94)

CAM JORDAN'S IMPORTANCE

Whenever we include numbers or decide to throw out numbers, one fact remains in New Orleans. Cam Jordan's production is integral for the success of the Saints' defense.

Some fans have mentioned retirement or "time to move on" from Jordan.  Besides the venting, what fan can deliver a player with the consistency and reliability of Cam Jordan?

You don't send a player with 11 seasons, 94.5 sacks, and 190 QB Hits out to pasture, right?  Nonetheless, you can ask the edge rusher to increase his productivity.

New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan (94) signs a fans picture

I get it. His leadership is there.  His wisdom on the game remains.  Although this may be true,  his speed, agility, quickness, and strength are not the same as a couple of years ago.

You can sense that Cam realizes the difference. If you listen to Cam's interviews about the current defensive linemen, he often talks of his age, and amusingly, his height.  These are signs.

He is the elder statesman and is well respected in New Orleans and across the NFL.

If New Orleans would like to return to the postseason, doing it without Cam Jordan would be — not impossible — but challenging.

New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan (94)

IT'S TIME FOR CAM TO BE CAM

In other words, if the Saints cannot locate how to dial-up Cam Jordan's efficacy, New Orleans will have a problem.

It's time for Cam Jordan to register the numbers for the remainder of 2021. If not, the New Orleans defense will continue to be average.

Can Cam turn it around?

We shall see.


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