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John DeShazier: Takeaways from Coach Sean Payton's Friday teleconference

Turnovers costly in past two losses

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A few takes from New Orleans SaintsCoach Sean Payton'sFriday teleconference:

  1. The Saints have committed six of their 15 turnovers this season in the last two games, four against Denver last Sunday and two against Carolina on Thursday night. Those are among the areas that stood out in the aftermath of Thursday's 23-20 loss to Carolina at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C. "The turnovers set us back early," Payton said. "We've had six now in two games and it's been something early, for a good portion of the season, we've been good with, and I would say has helped us in regards to winning games. Six offensively in the last two weeks is not good, and you're going to lose. I think defensively, we handled the short fields and the sudden-change stops really well. (Defensive tackle) Nick Fairleyjumped off the film a little bit and you see his play, not only in the passing game but in the running game. I think in the kicking game, there's a handful of things that come up in that game. The penalties late in the game on two punt returns, where we're going to try to get it in midfield situations – we've got them backed up – and when you get a penalty on a punt-return unit it's magnified."
  1. Payton said that special team coordinator Greg McMahondoes not shoulder the brunt of responsibility for the errors that the unit has committed this season. "It falls on me. It starts with the head coach. We've got to make sure we're giving our guys the best plan possible. It's got to become a way for us to win games. It's easy right now to just single out one specific individual. The turnovers are the most troubling. I think it's difficult to just point at one specific area."
  1. Payton said he believes running back Mark Ingramis going to be OK. "I don't know that he was put in the (concussion) protocol and I don't know the final diagnosis was that. But I think he's going to be OK, he's going to be fine."
  1. The confidence remains in rookie kicker Wil Lutz. "He's a tough competitor. When you watch the play on tape from last night, the kick is a little lower than you'd like, but coming off that field and talking to (the media) last night, it felt like it was a real low get-off, and watching the tape from the end zone copy, the protection has got to be a little bit better in that strong side B gap. (Offensive tackle) Andrus(Peat) is doing real well there, so I think the job for everyone else is to paint the clean picture. We have the right kicker. I don't see it being as low on film today. It still needs to get up a little quicker, but that unit has got to do all their things right and watch the kicker then do his thing right."
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