The Paper Wall

Now and then, there are some games you simply try to forget..

this was sure as Hell one of them.

Hi, I'm Darth Raider, Lord of the Sith, Master of all Evil. I'm here to tell you the truth. After witnessing a game like that, it sure does state the obvious doesn't it?

To put it simply? We're not moving forward.

Last year, we had the following problems: A) Our Running game couldn't get going B) Our Offensive Line had a negative impact on our team C) We had Defensive issues across every position.

Yup, here we go again in 2013.

The biggest problem you ask? The Offensive Line injuries and lack of talent will affect us from now until the end of the year (can you say paper wall issues?) . I think the loss of Jared Veldheer hurt us more than fans originally thought. Alex Barron (his replacement) got pushed around like a rag doll in cross town traffic. Solutions? I have no idea. What's worse? The Oakland Raiders not having an idea as well!

After asking about if Oakland would bring in new talent after witnessing our starting Left Tackle injury, Reggie McKenzie stated:

"We’re not looking to just bring in bodies. Veldheer’s a real player and real players aren’t just hanging around out there.’’

Well HELL! Isn't that your job Reggie?!?!? To find real players?!?!

It's also frustrating to know we could not cover blitzes to save our life. Stefan Wisniewski seems to be a good , overall talent.. but last Friday he did not do his job in informing other players when a Blitz was coming. 7 Sacks is just horrible, in general. When I think of the rest of the line: Nix, Brisiel and Barnes? My bumpy head starts to hurt.

One of the biggest concerns also is we are lacking the push necessary to get our supposed #1 strength up and running. What has happened to our run game? Do we need to put pictures on Milk Cartons?

At least the passing game was ok (Matt Flynn: 124 yards, 1 TD) but we still have a long ways to go to becoming a competitive team.

Defense? What Defense? Tracy Porter got burnt like wood in a bonfire.. several times. Drew Brees was taking anything he wanted from our pathetic Defense (202 yards in one half). At one point, the former Pro Bowler was in the pocket for TEN SECONDS. Stacy McGee was also seen getting blocked with one arm. SMH!

Needless to say, we have work to do on our pass rushing and pass defending.

Sure, I know it was a high powered Offense but damn..get your shit together, team!


NEW ORLEANS -- Drew Brees will need some unproven receivers to emerge this year, and could not help but be encouraged by way rookie Kenny Stills and second-year pro Nick Toon came through against the Raiders.

Brees passed for 202 yards and a touchdown while leading five scoring drives, and the Saints survived a sloppy second half for a 28-20 preseason victory over the Oakland Raiders on Friday night.

Toon, a fourth-round pick in 2012 who spent his rookie season on injured reserve, started for Marques Colston, who has been getting extra rest because of an offseason foot injury. Stills started at wideout for the second straight game and hauled in Brees' lone scoring strike from 16 yards out.

Brees completed 78 percent of his passes (14 of 18), including a 56-yarder to Toon, setting up Mark Ingram's 2-yard TD run."We asked them to do a lot. They were having to think a lot on the move," Brees said. "They did a great job adjusting to that and played with a lot of confidence."

On his long catch, Toon beat former Saints cornerback Tracy Porter, who later left the game with a right groin injury. Raiders coach Dennis Allen said that was one of eight injuries -- three of them potentially serious -- for Oakland. In addition to Porter, Allen was particularly concerned about offensive tackle John Wetzel's knee injury and tight end David Ausberry's shoulder injury.

New Orleans' new defense under coordinator Rob Ryan thrived, sacking Matt Flynn five times in the first half.

"Some of it was different looks, some of it was guys getting beat and some of it was we have to recognize the pressure, find the hot receivers and get the ball out," Allen said, noting that Flynn twice did not see receivers open for potentially big plays. "I can't point to one individual aspect and say that was the issue."

"The difference between moving the ball and not moving the ball is just so small," Flynn said. "There are just some things we have to clean up. We know we can do a lot better."The Saints (2-0) led 23-0 before the Raiders (1-1) scored on Flynn's lone TD pass, an 18-yarder toDenarius Moore, late in the first half. Flynn was 12 of 16 for 124 yards.

The Saints finished with seven sacks. One by linebacker Ramon Humber, who was credited with nine tackles, including a fourth-down stop. The Saints also registered a safety in the fourth quarter when linebacker Will Herring and numerous teammates swarmed running back Jamize Olawale.

Brees, who played most of the first half, was pleased with New Orleans' ball control, and the fact that the Saints never punted in the first half, but not with settling for Garrett Hartley's field goals of 53, 31 and 30 yards.

"I wish we could have had more points," Brees said. "So there's still work to do."

Stills caught four passes for 64 yards, making challenging grabs along the sideline twice, once on his TD.

second-string quarterback Terrelle Pryor completed one of five passes for 9 yards. He also rushed four times for 15 yards.Flynn was back in the stadium where he won a national title with LSU in January 2008. It also was a homecoming of sorts for Allen, a former Saints defensive assistant under Payton for five years.

What helped the Raiders make a game of it was poor ball security by New Orleans. Second-year running back Travaris Cadet fumbled twice, resulting in one turnover. Oakland's second touchdown came when defensive end Ryan Robinson recovered Seneca Wallace's fumble, which was forced by David Bass on the 1.

Eddy Carmona's 46-yard field goal, which pulled Oakland to 23-17 at the end of the third quarter, was set up by Omar Gaither's interception of Seneca Wallace's tipped pass.

"I know it was a preseason game, but we did everything in the second half to allow them a chance to get back in the game," Payton said. "That frustrated me."

Wallace, competing with Luke McCown to back up Brees, was three of six passing for 32 yards in five scoreless series.

Notes: Allen said other Raiders injuries were: RB Darren McFadden (shoulder), LB Kevin Burnett (knee), CB Joselio Hanson (shoulder), DL Brandon Bair(hamstring) and Carmona (neck, leg). ... The game was the last called by retiring public address announcer Jerry Romig, who has handled those duties since 1969. The 83-year-old signed off by announcing the final score and added, "It's been fun. Good night. Love you." He will be succeeded by his son, Mark, in the regular-season opener against Atlanta.

Alright Team, let's pray for a better showing in Oakland next week against the almighty Bears! Keep it Silver and Black!

-Darth Raider

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