Wednesday, October 28, 2020

New Orleans Saints Week 8 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2020 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the New Orleans Saints rank in terms of average, best and worst:

  • Average ranking: 9.8 (9th)
  • Best ranking: 8th (Multiple)
  • Worst ranking: 12th (CBS Sports)

Below you will find a Week 8 roundup for the Saints in our consensus 2020 NFL Power Rankings.

The Athletic -- Rank: 9

That was an infrastructure win against Carolina. Sean Payton's play-calling was outstanding. Drew Brees was accurate and efficient. Alvin Kamara caught all eight of his targets and totaled 148 yards from scrimmage. The Saints were playing without Michael Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders and lost left tackle Terron Armstead in the first half. Yet they still produced 26 first downs and 415 yards. The defense ranks 29th and still has a lot of work to do. But New Orleans has to be thrilled to be 4-2, given how turbulent its season has been so far.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 12

They found a way against the Panthers, even with a limited offense. That's the sign of a good team. The defense showed some improvement too.

USA Today -- Rank: 9

Wil Lutz has converted the most kicks in 2020 (11 FGs and 21 PATs) without a miss, just ahead of Miami's Jason Sanders (15 FGs, 13 PATs).

ESPN -- Rank: 9

Who needs to step up: The secondary

It wouldn't be fair to single out just one player in the Saints' secondary, since every one of them has taken turns with busted coverages or pass interference penalties -- which have become New Orleans' most nagging problem all season. The Saints have now allowed six passes of 48-plus yards in their past four games. And they have just one interception since Week 1. They need cornerbacks Marshon Lattimore and Janoris Jenkins to live up to their potential as one of the league's best CB duos, and they need a lot more consistency from the talented safety trio of Marcus Williams, Malcolm Jenkins and C.J. Gardner-Johnson. -- Mike Triplett -- Rank: 10

Playing without his top two receivers, Drew Brees led the Saints to their most efficient offensive performance of the season in a 27-24 win over the Panthers. The veteran passer accounted for three touchdowns and threw for 287 yards, connecting with eight different receivers in a classic Brees clinic of efficiency. Reserve wideout Marquez Callaway made the most of his opportunity, finishing with eight catches for 75 yards in an impact performance that should warrant continued playing time, even when Michael Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders return. And what else can be said about Alvin Kamara, who didn't crack the end zone but now has five straight games with more than 100 yards from scrimmage? He has been the rock for the Saints all season, the team's unquestioned MVP.

Previous update: New Orleans Saints Week 7 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

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