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New Orleans Saints play clean offense, disruptive defense in victory over Giants

Two red zone touchdowns, seven sacks highlight 24-6 win

All the necessary things to do to win a game in somewhat convincing fashion, the New Orleans Saints (7-7) did on Sunday in a 24-6 victory over the Giants (5-9). And, most significantly, the Saints' two-game winning streak kept them stride for stride with Tampa Bay in the NFC South Division, and kept their destiny in their hands entering a short-week trip to play the Rams in Los Angeles on Thursday night.

OFFENSE: The Saints didn't crack 300 yards of offense, finishing with 296. But they were 2 for 2 in the red zone, converted six of 12 third-down chances, maintained possession for 33:27 and didn't commit a turnover. If you can get numbers like that from your offense, the odds of winning increase exponentially. New Orleans ran it well enough (28 carries for 87 yards), quarterback Derek Carr produced one of his most efficient games of the season (23 of 28 for 218 yards and three touchdowns, with no interceptions), and the offensive line did its work in the run game and pass protection (one sack allowed). All in all, a more-than-solid offering.

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DEFENSE: For the second consecutive week, the Saints' defense kept an opponent out of the end zone and only gave up a pair of field goals. Regardless of opponent, that's not easy to do in the NFL and it obviously has been a welcome shift for a defense that needed to string together a couple of good games. The Saints didn't force a turnover, but they harassed Giants quarterback Tommy DeVito and sacked him seven times (three by defensive end Tanoh Kpassagnon, two by rookie defensive tackle Bryan Bresee and one each by linebacker Demario Davis and defensive end Carl Granderson) while limiting the Giants to 133 net passing yards. And New Orleans got it together in the run game, too, holding New York to 60 rushing yards on 16 carries. Getting off the field on third down possibly was what the team did best, with 14 stops on 16 third-down chances.

SPECIAL TEAMS: Overall, not a bad job. But in the totality of it all, we have to include J.T. Gray's running into the kicker penalty on fourth-and-1 in the first quarter, which kept the Giant offense on the field and led to a 56-yard field goal for the games' opening points. Other than that, having Rashid Shaheed back to return punts (three, for an 11.7-yard average) was good and the punt cover team was more than fine (15 yards on two returns). Blake Grupe made a 50-yard field goal, which is always a plus.

Check out the game action shots from the New Orleans Saints game against the New York Giants in Week 15 of the 2023 NFL season.

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