The New Orleans Saints take on the Seattle Seahawks on the road in Week 7 of the 2021 NFL season.
Seattle, Wash. – Whatever it takes.
Survive and advance.
Find a way.
Whichever cliché feels best, use it, because all apply to the 2021 New Orleans Saints through six games. The latest exhibit submitted was their 13-10 victory over the Seahawks on Monday night at Lumen Field, which raised the Saints' record to 4-2 and marked yet another game in which New Orleans married together some standout defense, just enough offense and adequate special teams in order to post a win.
OFFENSE: Truthfully, the overall numbers should have been better. New Orleans' 222 passing yards could have been nearer to, or above, 300 if not for a couple of deep throws that probably should have been completions rather than incompletions. But the Saints were 2 of 13 on third down (2 for 2 on fourth down helped), and they didn't convert touchdowns on three of four trips inside the red zone. Often, those numbers accompany a losing effort, so the fact that the Saints were able to overcome them and win says a little about the resiliency they did show. One particularly standout drive – 19 plays, 86 yards, lasting 10:16 – would have been a slice of perfection had it resulted in a touchdown, instead of Brian Johnson's 21-yard field goal. There's cleanup work to be done, and it'll begin with receivers catching the passes that are there to be caught.
DEFENSE: The Saints gave up an 84-yard touchdown pass on their fifth defensive play. On the other 54 plays, they allowed 135 yards and rolled up a season-high five sacks. Seattle never advanced to the red zone, was 3 of 12 on third down and came up empty on its only fourth-down attempt. Frankly, other than the touchdown play, New Orleans was as dominant defensively as it has been in any game this season. The defense held when it needed to; Seattle missed field goal attempts of 44 and 53 yards, but those attempts would have been shorter – and had a better chance to be successful – if the Saints' defense hadn't bowed up and stopped the drives when it did. The run defense continues to lead the way (90 yards allowed on 28 attempts), but it was a solid overall effort that helped New Orleans win its third road game this season.
SPECIAL TEAMS: When the weather conditions are factored in, it was an outstanding day overall for the units. Johnson kicked 21- and 33-yard field goals, Blake Gillikin continued to show he's one of the league's best punters (47.5-yard average gross, 44.3 net) and Ty Montgomery had a 33-yard kickoff return that showed some pop. Add in the fact that virtually nothing was surrendered on returns (19 yards on two punt returns, and a 17.7-yard average on three kickoff returns) and the special team units were more than solid.