Tuesday, October 3, 2023

New Orleans Saints Week 5 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2023 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Below you will find a Week 5 roundup for the New Orleans Saints in our consensus 2023 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 18

Biggest issue on defense: Tackling

Saints coach Dennis Allen said the loss to the Buccaneers was "one of their worst tackling games," which allowed the Bucs to make some big plays to seal the victory. And after sacking the opposing quarterback seven times in the first two games, the defense has gotten to the quarterback only two times since. The Saints' defense was solid through their first 2.5 games, but they've made just enough mistakes in the past six quarters to where they can't overcome the offense's shortcomings. -- Katherine Terrell

NFL.com -- Rank: 18

That's now seven straight games where the offense has scored 20 or fewer points. This one comes with an asterisk in that it involved Derek Carr playing at less than full strength. Carr missed some throws, for sure, but how many came as a result of his sore shoulder? That's hard to tell. The Saints were struggling offensively before Carr got hurt. The defense is pretty terrific, but how long can it hold teams down without some help? The Saints have only five touchdowns in four games; only one team, Cincinnati with four, has fewer. One of those TDs was a Rashid Shaheed punt return, so they're averaging one offensive touchdown per game. Somehow, some way, it must be fixed.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 19

The offense just didn't do enough against Tampa Bay. Derek Carr's shoulder injury clearly was an issue.

USA Today -- Rank: 20

How did RB Alvin Kamara catch 13 passes in his 2023 debut — 13 — and gain 33 yards? Even crazier when you consider one of those receptions went for 10 yards.

The Athletic -- Rank: 19

The Saints guaranteed Derek Carr $100 million in the offseason. They are tied for 25th in scoring (15.5 points per game) four games into the season. Coach Dennis Allen is now 17-40 all-time. New Orleans has the fourth-oldest roster in the NFL (per PFF) and is projected to be an NFL-worst $89 million over the salary cap next season. Other than that, everything is fine.

FOX -- Rank: 20

Should Derek Carr have been playing against Tampa? It didn't look like it, as he was under pressure all day and didn't look comfortable throwing the ball downfield. It's got to be frustrating to be the Saints. This is a really solid defense, but watching their offense is about as fun as watching paint dry.

Yahoo! -- Rank: 16

Alvin Kamara was back, and maybe it was a bad thing. He ended up with one of the weirdest lines you'll ever see: 14 targets, 13 catches, 33 yards. That's horrible. Derek Carr's shoulder injury probably led to him throwing short most of the game, but force-feeding Kamara low-value touches in the passing game could have been part of the plan, too. That has to change.

PFT -- Rank: 22

Where have you gone, Drew Brees?

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