The Saints Complete a Fourth Quarter Comeback To Beat The Falcons
NFL football is officially back, Saints fans. The Saints kicked off their highly anticipated season against their division rival, the Altlanta Falcons. Both teams went through some major changes in the off-season. The Falcons saw their long-time franchise QB, Matt Ryan, make his way to Indianapolis. Without Ryan, Marcus Mariota would take over the role of starting signal caller.
The Saints didn't see a change at QB, but they will see a new head coach. With Sean Peyton's retirement, Dennis Allen was set to make his head coaching debut. The Saints also added some new and exciting pieces on both sides of the ball with Jarvis Landry and Tyrann Mathieu. The Saints are seen by many experts as trending in the right direction while the Falcons are looked at as being in a rebuilding year. With that, let’s take a look at how the game went.
The Falcons would start the game with the ball and put together a decent-looking drive that went into Saints’ territory. The Saints’ defense would stiffen and hold the Falcons to a field goal. The Saints' first offensive possession didn’t go over very well as they were forced to punt after a quick three and out. The defense would respond by forcing a three and out of their own and giving the ball right back to their offense.
It was Taysom time on the Saint’s second offensive possession of the game as he would have a huge 57-yard run to get the Saints in the red zone. Hill would finish the drive with a 13-yard touchdown run to give the Saints a 7-3 lead.
The Saints’ defense continued the team’s momentum as Pete Werner would force the first Saints turnover of the game with a Peanut Tillman-style punch to force a fumble.
This would set the Saints up deep in Falcon’s territory. Jameis Winston and the offense couldn’t get much going after the turnover and would have to settle for a 44-yard field goal that would bounce off the left upright. The Saints would come up with nothing after the turnover.
The second quarter began in the middle of a promising Falcons drive. The drive would feature a huge dose of the extremely versatile Cordarrelle Patterson. Patterson would finish the drive with an 8-yard rushing touchdown to put the Falcons up 10-7.
Both teams would exchange a couple of punts before Atlanta would add another three to the scoreboard with a 50-yard field goal to extend their lead to 13-7. The Saint’s offensive continued to struggle as a sack on Winston would give Atlanta the ball back with time to kick another field goal to extend their lead to 16-7 at the break.
The Saints would begin the second with the ball and put together a decent drive into Falcons territory. The drive would eventually stall leading to a Will Lutz 49-yard field goal to cut the lead to 16-10.
The Falcons would pick up right where they left off in the first half with the penalty-added drive that put Atlanta inside the five. Marcus Mariota would do the rest with a QB sneak and the subsequent extra point would make it 23-10.
The ensuing Saints’ possession would end after Mark Ingram would fumble setting up the Falcons in Saints territory. Atlanta was threatening again, but Marcus Maye would knock the ball loose from Mariota and Mathieu would recover.
The Saints still couldn’t get anything going offensively as Winston and Thomas just looked out of sync. The quarter would come to a close with the Falcons leading 23-10
The fourth quarter would begin with the Falcons in the red zone again. The Saints' defense would stiffen up and force a 27-yard field goal attempt. The Falcons would add on another three points to increase their lead to 26-10.
The Saints seemed to find something on the very next drive as Winston would heat up. He would hit four different targets on the drive and ended the drive with a touchdown pass to Michael Thomas for his first score of the season. The Saints would go for two and convert with a completion to Chris Olave. The score made it a one-possession game in the fourth, making the score 26-18.
The Saints’ defense would force a punt giving the ball back to Winston and this offense. Michael Thomas and Winston looked completely in sync in the fourth as they continued to move the ball through the air. It was Thomas who would finish the drive in the end zone again. The Saints would go for two again, but would not be successful. The Saints would cut the lead to 26-24.
The Saints would get the ball back with 48 seconds remaining and the Saints down by two. Winston marched the offense in Falcons territory and set them up for a 51-yard field goal to give the Saints the lead with 19 seconds remaining.
Atlanta would have a chance for a 63-yard field goal attempt, but it was blocked. The Saints seal the fourth-quarter comeback and escape Atlanta with a one-point win.
It was a slow start but a win in the end. Saints move to 1-0 on the season.