Sunday, September 20, 2020

New Orleans Saints Week 2 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: 3.6 (3rd)
  • Best ranking: 3rd (Multiple)
  • Worst ranking: 5th (The Athletic)

Below you will find a Week 2 roundup for the Saints in our consensus 2020 NFL Power Rankings.

The Athletic -- Rank: 5

What we learned: Their offensive struggles are concerning. The Saints beat the Buccaneers and are still a really good team. But in some ways, this felt like the stretch last season where they leaned on defense and special teams with Teddy Bridgewater at quarterback. The Saints ranked 23rd in EPA per snap on offense in Week 1. Sean Payton called it one of the worst days hes ever had as a play-caller. Alvin Kamara had 16 yards on 12 carries, and Michael Thomas suffered an ankle injury. This Saints team is still among the best in the NFC, but its identity could be different than previous years.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 3

They showed the Bucs they are still the team to beat in the NFC South. The defense was outstanding against Tom Brady.

USA Today -- Rank: 3

Glass half-full -- they won with almost nothing from (injured) WR Michael Thomas. Glass half-empty -- it might be that way for a while.

ESPN -- Rank: 3

Best rookie debut: DT Malcolm Roach
Slim pickings here, since first-round pick Cesar Ruiz was out with an ankle injury and third-rounder Zack Baun was inactive after missing time in training camp with an injury. But Roach, an undrafted rookie from Texas, deserves to be singled out for his solid debut -- which included a tackle for loss. He played 23 snaps, which was three more than starting nose tackle Malcolm Brown, while the Saints held Tampa Bay to 86 rushing yards on 26 carries and sacked Tom Brady three times. -- Mike Triplett -- Rank: 4

The offense wasn't quite ready to roll in Week 1, but teams as complete as this don't put all their eggs in one basket. The Saints forced Tom Brady and the Bucs into three turnovers (including a Janoris Jenkins pick-six) and a blocked kick, providing cover for Drew Brees and Co. in a relatively easy win at the Superdome. Brees threw for just 160 yards, and New Orleans' typically prolific offense was held to 271 total yards. After the game, Sean Payton called it "as bad a game as I've had as a play caller ... it was awful." These are rich teams' problems -- lamenting all the failures and shortcomings in the afterglow of a double-digit victory.

Previous update: New Orleans Saints Week 1 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

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