Sat, 13 Aug 2022

New Orleans Saints 2021 Season Recap

New Orleans Saints
13 Jan 2022, 05:11 GMT+10

Game-by-game review of the Saints 2021 NFL season New Orleans Saints

Ultimately, the New Orleans Saints finished the 2021 NFL season with a 9-8 record and didn't qualify for the playoffs despite winning four of their last five games and going to the wire before being eliminated by San Francisco's overtime win against the Rams. However, external occurrences - Hurricane Ida, Covid-19, injuries, suspension - forged to produce a team that won't soon be forgotten by Saints fans, one that scaled wall after wall during the first 17-game season in NFL history. Here's a week-by-week breakdown of each game during the Saints 2021 season:

NFL Week 1 2021 | Saints 38, Packers 3 | Saints record: 1-0 New Orleans Saints vs. Green Bay Packers Game Recap: Sean Payton, Saints players did it for Louisiana

The New Orleans Saints began their 2021 season with a home game that was played in Jacksonville. Hurricane Ida ripped through Louisiana before the Saints could even begin the season, which marked the beginning of an extended time away from New Orleans for the team. Despite the adversity, New Orleans pulled off an incredible win versus Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers.

New Orleans Saints vs. Green Bay Packers Game Stats to Note: Jacksonville's TIAA Bank Field became the seventh site at which the Saints have hosted a home game, joining Tulane Stadium (23-32-1), the Caesers Superdome (185-167), Giants Stadium (0-1), San Antonio's Alamodome (1-2), Baton Rouge's Tiger Stadium (0-4), and London's Wembley Stadium (1-0), and the fifth site the Saints have won a home game. With zero interceptions, Jameis Winston became the first quarterback in NFL history to throw five touchdown passes with no interceptions in his first career start with a new team in a season-opener. Overall, Winston became the 7th quarterback with five touchdown passes and no interceptions in a season opener, and first since Baltimore QB Lamar Jackson did so at Miami on September 8, 2019. Winston recorded five touchdown passes for the second time in his career. Winston finished 19-of-29 for 246 yards and five touchdowns as a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on November 22, 2015, at Philadelphia. The Saints scored their first touchdown of the game completing a 15-play, 76-yard drive, and second touchdown of the game completing a 15-play, 80-yard drive. Those drives marked the first time since September 17, 2000, that any NFL team recorded two consecutive touchdown drives of at least 15 plays when Minnesota recorded touchdown drives of 17 plays and 18 plays against New England. New Orleans Saints vs. Green Bay Packers Game Highlights and Photos: Saints vs. Packers Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 1 New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston's best throws from 5-TD game Saints vs. Packers Game Action Photos | 2021 NFL Week 1 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: New Orleans Saints leaned on resilience to carry them through 2021 season New Orleans Saints will pick 18th in 2022 NFL draft New Orleans Saints 2022 opponents finalized Week 1 vs. GB Jameis Winston New Orleans Saints * Week 1 Stats: 14/20, 148 yds, 5 TDs

NFL Week 2 2021 | Saints 7, Panthers 26 | Saints record: 1-1 New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers Game Recap: Carolina Panthers defeat New Orleans Saints 26-7 in Week 2 NFC South matchup

After playing an awful first half of football against the Carolina Panthers, the New Orleans Saints rallied but came up short in a 26-7 loss Sunday, Sept. 19 at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte.

The Saints played the game with eight members of their coaching back in Texas because of Covid protocols. The coaches who misssed the game: Ryan Nielsen (assistant head coach/defensive line), Brian Young (pass rush specialist), Jim Chaney (offensive analyst), Declan Doyle (offensive assistant), Phil Galiano (assistant special teams), Curtis Johnson (senior offensive assistant/wide receivers), Dan Roushar (run game coordinator/tight ends) and Joel Thomas (running backs). New Orleans also had to play without a number of key players including defensive lineman Marcus Davenport, Tanoh Kpassagnon, David Onyemata; linebackers Kwon Alexander, Pete Werner, Chase Hansen; and defensive backs Marshon Lattimore, C.J. Gardner-Johnson.

New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers Game Stats to Note: The Saints, who trailed 17-0 at halftime, forced a Sam Darnold turnover and then scored on an 8-yard run by quarterback Jameis Winston at the start of the fourth quarter to make it 17-7. But Carolina put the game away on an 11-yard scoring run by star back Christian McCaffrey. The Panthers dominated the first quarter, out-gaining the Saints 159-15 with eight first downs to the Saints' one, and finished the half with 274 yards to the Saints' 65. Carolina dominated the time of possession in the half, 20:55 to 9:05, and ended the half with 15 first downs while the Saints had just three. Winston, who threw for five touchdowns in the 38-3 Week 1 win over the Green Bay Packers, struggled against Carolina, throwing two interceptions while being sacked four times. He finished 11 of 22 for 111 yards. Star running back Alvin Kamara had a tough outing as well, carrying the ball eight times for five yards while catching four passes for 25 yards. New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers Game Highlights and Photos: Saints Top Plays at Carolina Panthers | 2021 NFL Week 2 Highlights Panthers vs. Saints Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 2 Photos: Game Action | Saints at Panthers NFL Week 2 2021 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 2 at CAR Jameis Winston New Orleans Saints * Week 2 Stats: 11/22, 111 yds, 1 TOT TD, 1 INT

NFL Week 3 2021 | Saints 28, Patriots 13 | Saints record: 2-1 New Orleans Saints at New England Patriots Game Recap: New Orleans Saints ride defense to 28-13 victory over New England Patriots

Veteran defensive back Malcolm Jenkins had a 34-yard pick-six in the third quarter off Pats rookie quarterback Mac Jones to give New Orleans a commanding two-score lead and backup quarterback Taysom Hill put the game away with a 4-yard touchdown run with 2:37 to play. Hill's score ended a 13-play, 75-yard drive that ate up 6:45 off the clock.

New Orleans Saints at New England Patriots Game Stats to Note: The win improves New Orleans' all-time regular-season record against the Patriots to 5-10. It also improves its record at Foxborough, Mass. to 4-5. With New Orleans never having won a contest at Gillette Stadium in two tries prior to Sunday, the win on the third attempt marks the 57th facility for the franchise to win a game. The Saints currently have a streak of 307 regular-season games without having been shut out, dating to a 26-20 win at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 6, 2002, at Raymond James Stadium, the longest-running streak in the NFL. Quarterback Jameis Winston made his third start as a Saint on Sunday, completing 13-of-21 passes for 128 yards and two scores. In his only start against New England on Oct. 5, 2017, as a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, he completed 26 of 46 passes for 334 yards, one touchdown, and zero interceptions. The win Sunday marks the 18th team Winston has defeated in his career as a starter. Safety Malcolm Jenkins intercepted Mac Jones' first pass attempt of the second half and returned it for a touchdown, Jenkins' seventh career interception returned for a score. Jenkins' five pick-sixes since 2014 ranks first among NFL safeties and tied for second-most in that time period with Janoris Jenkins. New Orleans Saints at New England Patriots Game Highlights and Photos: Patriots vs. Saints Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 3 Photos: Game Action | Saints at Patriots Week 3 2021 Highlights: Saints Top Plays at Patriots | 2021 NFL Week 3 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 3 at NE Alvin Kamara New Orleans Saints * Week 3 Stats: 24 rushes, 118 TOT yds, 1 TD NFL Week 4 2021 | Saints 21, Giants 27 | Saints record: 2-2 New Orleans Saints vs. New York Giants Game Recap: Consecutive New Orleans Saints slip-ups on special teams and defense helped Giants seize momentum

In nine seconds, the Giants trimmed a two-score game to a one-score game and when they added the two-point conversion on a run by Daniel Jones, the one-score game became a field goal game at 21-18. The Saints didn't score again; they punted after advancing to their 46-yard line, and the Giants took the momentum they'd seized and rode it to victory. New York tied the score on an 11-play, 59-yard drive that resulted in a 48-yard field goal with 31 seconds left in regulation. And after New York won the coin toss in overtime, Saquon Barkley capped the only possession of the extra period - a nine-play, 75-yard touchdown drive - with a 6-yard run to end it.

New Orleans Saints vs. New York Giants Game Stats to Note: The Saints currently have a streak of 308 regular-season games without having been shut out, dating to a 26-20 win at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 6, 2002, at Raymond James Stadium, the longest-running streak in the NFL. Quarterback Taysom Hill made his presence felt on the opening possession of the second half, when he broke seven tackles from eight yards out for the score, giving the Saints a 14-7 lead. Hill scored two rushing touchdowns, the third time Hill has scored at least two rushing touchdowns in the same game. Running back Alvin Kamara surpassed the century mark on the ground with 120 rushing yards on 26 attempts. It's Kamara's fourth career 100-yard rushing game, his second against the New York Giants (9/30/18 at New York Giants). Safety Marcus Williams intercepted Giants quarterback Daniel Jones to end the first half. Williams now has 15 interceptions in his career, tied for eighth in club record books with Ernie Jackson and Brett Maxie. New Orleans Saints vs. New York Giants Game Highlights and Photos: Saints vs. Giants on-field highlights | 2021 NFL Week 4 Photos: Game Action | Saints vs. Giants Week 4 2021 Calls of the Game: Saints vs. Giants - Oct. 3, 2021 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 4 vs. NYG Jameis Winston New Orleans Saints * Week 4 Stats: 17/23, 226 yds, 1 TD Week 4 vs. NYG Alvin Kamara New Orleans Saints * Week 4 Stats: 26 ATT, 120 yds NFL Week 5 2021 | Saints 33, Washington 22 | Saints record: 3-2 New Orleans Saints vs. Washington Football Team Game Recap: Successful Hail Mary helped propel New Orleans Saints past Washington on Sunday

When quarterback Jameis Winston took the shotgun snap, the pass rush flushed him to the right but once he planted his feet, Winston uncorked a deep rainbow for the end zone, instead of a line drive for the sideline. And receiver Marquez Callaway was the pot of gold at the end of it. Callaway positioned himself in front of several Washington defenders, perfectly timed his leap and cradled the football in both hands as time expired in the first half. And with that lightning strike, the Saints scored the final 13 points of the first half, took a 20-13 lead and never relinquished that momentum as they posted a 33-22 victory at FedEx Field in Landover, Md.

New Orleans Saints vs. Washington Football Team Game Stats to Note: The New Orleans Saints defeated the Washington Football Team 33-22 on Sunday, Oct. 10 improving their record to 3-2. Sunday's win at Washington marks the franchise's 400th victory (regular season and postseason combined). The win gives Coach Sean Payton a 4-3 record against the Washington Football Team, 2-2 at FedEx Field. Payton now owns a winning record against 20 of the 31 NFL opponents. Dating to their days as NFC South opponents with the Saints and Carolina Panthers, Payton now has a 10-6 record against Washington Football Team Coach Ron Rivera and a 1-0 postseason mark. Rivera is now the first coach that Payton owns double-digit regular season victories against. Wide receiver/return specialist Deonte Harris caught a career-long 72-yard touchdown pass from Winston in the first quarter. Harris had 99 all-purpose yard Sunday, increasing his total to 2,440 all-purpose yards in his brief career. Harris now needs only 60 more all-purpose yards to reach 2,500. Linebacker Pete Werner led the team with 13 tackles (eight solo) Sunday, which also set a career high. Werner is the first Saints rookie defender since linebacker Stephone Anthony (11/29/15 and 12/6/15) to have double-digit stops in back-to-back contests. New Orleans Saints vs. Washington Football Team Game Highlights and Photos: Saints at Washington Football Team Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 5 Photos: Game Action | Saints at Washington Week 5 2021 Best radio calls from Saints at Washington | 2021 NFL Week 5 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 5 at WFT Jameis Winston New Orleans Saints * Week 5 Stats: 15/30, 279 yds, 4 TDS, 1 INT

Week 5 at WFT Alvin Kamara New Orleans Saints * Week 5 Stats: 16 ATT, 122 TOT YDS, 2 TOT TD

Week 5 at WFT Marquez Callaway New Orleans Saints * Week 5 Stats: 4 REC, 85 YDS, 2 TDS

NFL Week 7 2021 | Saints 13, Seahawks 10 | Saints record: 4-2 New Orleans Saints at Seattle Seahawks Game Recap: New Orleans Saints fight through elements and Seahawks en route to victory Monday night

"Whichever cliche 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."

New Orleans Saints at Seattle Seahawks Game Stats to Note: Saints improve their all-time regular season record against the Seahawks to 9-6 and get their third consecutive win against the Seahawks dating to a 25-20 overtime win at home on Oct. 30, 2016. The Saints improve their record on "Monday Night Football" to 24-22, 17-8 under Coach Sean Payton. Payton's overall record on prime time to 35-16. Both New Orleans' and his record improves against Seattle in prime time to 2-1. The New Orleans defense surrendered only 219 yards and 10 points and had a season-high five sacks. It marked the third time since Payton became head coach in 2006, that New Orleans surrendered 10 or fewer points and had at least five sacks, occurring vs. Atlanta in 2020 and on Sept. 25, 2006 in a 23-3 win over the Falcons to celebrate the reopening of the Superdome. The Saints have a streak of 310 regular season games without having been shut out, dating to a 26-20 win at Tampa Bay on Sept. 6, 2002, at Raymond James Stadium, the longest running streak in the NFL New Orleans Saints at Seattle Seahawks Game Highlights and Photos: Saints at Seattle Seahawks Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 7 Jameis Winston, Demario Davis on-field interview after week 7 win over Seattle Seahawks Photos: Game Action | Saints at Seahawks Week 7 2021 Calls of the Game: Saints at Seahawks - Oct. 25, 2021 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 7 at SEA Jameis Winston New Orleans Saints * Week 7 Stats: 19/35, 222 YDS, 1 TD

Week 7 at SEA Alvin Kamara New Orleans Saints * Week 7 Stats: 20 ATT, 179 TOT YDS, 1 TOT TD

NFL Week 8 2021 | Saints 36, Buccaneers 27 | Saints record: 5-2 New Orleans Saints vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Game Recap: Quarterback Trevor Siemian steps in, steps up for New Orleans Saints in victory over Buccaneers

Nothing seems to phase the New Orleans Saints because, literally, the team has experienced pretty close to everything there is to experience this season. So it seemed almost natural that New Orleans (5-2) was able to shake off the second-quarter injury of starting quarterback Jameis Winston, and go on to post a 36-27 victory over Tampa Bay on Sunday at the Caesars Superdome.

New Orleans Saints vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Game Stats to Note: It marks the first time that the Saints have defeated the defending Super Bowl champions since the 2018 season when they defeated the Philadelphia Eagles in the regular season and the postseason. The win improves their all-time regular-season record against the Buccaneers to 38-21 and gives them their sixth consecutive regular-season win against them dating back to a 28-14 win at Raymond James Stadium on Dec. 9, 2018, which would tie them for the longest current regular-season winning streak against an opponent to the current streak against Chicago (Sept.18, 2011-present). With the win Sunday, Payton has 157 career victories (regular season and postseason combined), tied for 21st with Pittsburgh's Mike Tomlin. Seattle's Pete Carroll is the coach ahead of Payton and Tomlin in 20th place with 159 career victories. Quarterback Jameis Winston, who was the first overall pick by the Buccaneers in 2015 and played for them from 2015-19, made his first career start against his former team Sunday before exiting the game due to a knee injury. Winston completed 6-of-10 passes for 56 yards with one touchdown, a 108.8 passer rating and carried four times for 40 yards. Trevor Siemian replaced Winston in the second quarter and completed 16 of 29 passes for 159 yards and a touchdown. Siemian's last regular season game action came as a member of the New York Jets on Sept. 16, 2019. New Orleans Saints vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Game Highlights and Photos: Saints vs Tampa Bay Bucs Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 8 Photos: Game Action | Saints vs Buccaneers Week 8 2021 Calls of the Game: Saints vs Buccaneers - Oct. 31, 2021 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 8 vs. TB Trevor Siemian New Orleans Saints * Week 8 Stats: 16/29, 159 YDS, 1 TD

NFL Week 9 2021 | Saints 25, Falcons 27 | Saints record: 5-3 New Orleans Saints vs. Atlanta Falcons Game Recap: Atlanta Falcons defeat New Orleans Saints 27-25 on last-second field goal | NFL Week 9

The Saints' defense, the strength of the team this season, gave up several chunk plays to Atlanta, including a 49-yard completion, a 39-yard completion and a 34-yard completion. The back-breaker was Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan hitting running back Cordarrelle Patterson down the right sideline for 64 yards putting the Falcons in position for the winning 29-yard kick by Younghoo Koo. Penalties were another issue as the Saints had 10 accepted for 74 yards.

New Orleans Saints vs. Atlanta Falcons Game Stats to Note: The Saints extended their streak to 312 regular season games without having been shut out, dating to a 26-20 win at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 6, 2002 at Raymond James Stadium. This is the longest running streak for not being shutout in the NFL. Tackle Terron Armstead played in his 100th career game (regular season/postseason combined) as New Orleans gained 376 total net yards, the team's second-highest total of the season Linebacker Demario Davis finished with six tackles (four solo). Davis now has 399 tackles as a Saint in his fourth season with the Black and Gold, needing one more stop to reach 400 for his Saints career. After returning three punts for 50 yards (16.7 avg.) on Sunday, wide receiver/return specialist Deonte Harris has 654 career punt return yards, surpassing Rich Mauti to move into seventh in club record books. Harris led the team with a career-high six receptions with 52 yards, also bringing back two kickoffs for 51 yards (27.5 avg.). New Orleans Saints vs. Atlanta Falcons Game Highlights and Photos: Saints vs. Falcons Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 9 Photos: Game Action | Saints vs Falcons Week 9 2021 Calls of the Game: Saints vs Falcons - Nov. 7, 2021 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 9 vs. ATL Alvin Kamara New Orleans Saints * Week 9 Stats: 13 ATT, 104 TOT YDS, 1 TOT TD NFL Week 10 2021 | Saints 21, Titans 37 | Saints record: 5-4 New Orleans Saints at Tennessee Titans Game Recap: Fumbled kickoff return helped raise hurdle between New Orleans Saints and victory against Titans

"Quick change" is a phrase New Orleans Saints players hear, a situation that Saints coaches try to prepare them for, a situation that can occur at any moment during the course of a game. The Saints (5-4) had the worst kind of quick change Sunday in their 23-21 loss to the Titans at Nissan Stadium in Nashville, Tenn. And it was a swing that went a long way toward the team being in position to lose its second consecutive game.

New Orleans Saints at Tennessee Titans Game Stats to Note: Having never missed a game, defensive end Cameron Jordan played in his 169th career contest Sunday, moving into a tie with guard Jahri Evans for 11th place on the club's all-time games played list. Jordan posted a season-high five solo tackles vs. Tennessee. Running back Mark Ingram II rushed the ball 14 times for 47 yards and scored his first touchdown for the Saints this season. Ingram also caught four balls for 61 yards. Ingram now has 6,124 career rushing yards as a Saint and is now the team's all-time leading rusher. Ingram surpassed Deuce McAllister for first place on the club's all-time rushing yardage list. Ingram also took sole possession of third all-time in Saints history after surpassing Deuce McAllister with 56 touchdowns. Ingram's 7,829 total yards from scrimmage as a Saint rank fourth in club record books. With 108 yards from scrimmage, Ingram surpassed McAllister to move into third in Saints history all-purpose yards. Ingram played in his 109th career game as a Saint, moving into a tie for 36th place in club records with linebacker Dave Lafary and cornerback Fred Thomas. Linebacker Demario Davis now has 405 tackles as a Saint in his fourth season with the Black and Gold after recording six total tackles (five solo) against Tennessee. Wide receiver/return specialist Deonte Harris caught three passes for 84 yards Sunday, while also recording 110 kick return yards and just four punt return yards for 198 all-purpose yards. With the four punt return yards, Harris has now moved into sixth in club record books for punt return yards, bringing his total to 658 career punt return yards, surpassing Mel Gray. New Orleans Saints at Tennessee Titans Game Highlights and Photos: Saints at Titans Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 10 Photos: Game Action | Saints at Titans Week 10 2021 Calls of the Game: Saints at Titans - Nov. 14, 2021 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 10 at TEN Mark Ingram II New Orleans Saints * Week 10 Stats: 14 ATT, 4 REC, 108 TOT YDS, 1 TD Week 10 at TEN Trevor Siemian New Orleans Saints * Week 10 Stats: 19/34, 298 YDS, 2 TDs

NFL Week 11 2021 | Saints 29, Eagles 40 | Saints record: 5-5 New Orleans Saints at Philadelphia Eagles Game Recap: New Orleans Saints suffer thorough defeat to Philadelphia Eagles

The offense was stagnant, the defense was porous against the run and special teams couldn't break a big play, and even missed another point-after attempt. All in all, it was a recipe for a third consecutive loss for the Saints (5-5), who have a short week to recover in time for their Thanksgiving night game against Buffalo in the Caesars Superdome.

New Orleans Saints at Philadelphia Eagles Game Stats to Note: The Saints improve their streak of 313 regular-season games without having been shut out, dating to a 26-20 win at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 6, 2002, at Raymond James Stadium. Defensive end Marcus Davenport had 10 total tackles, 1 tackle for loss, and 1.5 sacks. Now with a team-high in sacks with 5.5, he needs just .5 next game to tie his career-high of six set in 2019. Defensive end Cameron Jordan accounted for 3 total tackles, one sack, and one pass deflection. Jordan now has 98.5 career sacks, taking sole possession of 38th all-time in the NFL record books surpassing Joey Porter with 98. Eagles signal-caller Jalen Hurts is the 38th player Jordan has sacked in his career. Jordan played in his 170th career contest Sunday, having never missed a game, moving into a tie with defensive lineman Derland Moore for 10th place on the club's all-time games played list. Wide receiver/return specialist Deonte Harris had two catches for 11 yards and 101 total all-purpose yards. Harris now has 687 career punt return yards, moving past Darren Sproles into fifth place in club record books. Harris now has 1,119 all-purpose yards in 2021, setting a career-high, surpassing his total of 1,018 in his rookie season in 2019 when he was selected to the Pro Bowl. New Orleans Saints at Philadelphia Eagles Game Highlights and Photos: Saints at Eagles Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 11 Photos: Game Action | Saints at Eagles Week 11 2021 Calls of the Game: Saints at Eagles - Nov. 21, 2021 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 11 at PHI Adam Trautman New Orleans Saints * Week 11 Stats: 5 REC, 58 YDS, 1 TD NFL Week 12 2021 | Saints 6, Bills 31 | Saints record: 5-6 New Orleans Saints vs. Buffalo Bills Game Recap: Buffalo Bills defeat New Orleans Saints 31-6 | NFL Week 12

On the night that legendary New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees said goodbye to Saints fans, the New Orleans offense had one of its least effective games as the Buffalo Bills cruised to a 31-6 victory on Thanksgiving night at the Caesars Superdome.

New Orleans Saints vs. Buffalo Bills Game Stats to Note: The Saints extended their streak to 315 regular-season games without having been shut out, dating to a 26-20 win at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 6, 2002, at Raymond James Stadium, the longest-running streak in the NFL. Running back Dwayne Washington had one special teams tackle. Washington now has five special teams tackles this season, setting a career-high. Defensive end Cameron Jordan played in his 171st career contest. Having never missed a game, Jordan moved into a tie with defensive lineman Wayne Martin (1989-99) for ninth place on the club's all-time games played list. Wide receiver Lil'Jordan Humphrey led the team in receiving yardage with three catches for 47 yards, both career-highs. New Orleans Saints vs. Buffalo Bills Game Highlights and Photos: Saints vs Bills Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 12 Photos: Game Action | Saints vs Bills Week 12 2021 Drew Brees returns to the Caesars Superdome | 2021 NFL Week 12 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 12 vs. BUF Kwon Alexander New Orleans Saints * Week 12 Stats: 4 TKL, 1 INT, 1 PD Week 12 vs. BUF Nick Vannett New Orleans Saints * Week 12 Stats: 1 REC, 11 YDS, 1 TD NFL Week 13 2021 | Saints 17, Cowboys 27 | Saints record: 5-7 New Orleans Saints vs. Dallas Cowboys Game Recap: Not enough offense for New Orleans Saints in loss to Dallas Cowboys

For certain, the New Orleans Saints were a livelier team on Thursday night in the Caesars Superdome than they'd appeared to be a week earlier. But the result - a 27-17 loss to Dallas, instead of a 31-6 loss to Buffalo - remained the same as it has for five consecutive games for the Saints (5-7), who couldn't pair enough offense with their defense to end the losing streak.

New Orleans Saints vs. Dallas Cowboys Game Stats to Note: The loss to the Cowboys drops Payton's record to 7-4 against Dallas defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, who served as interim head coach Thursday night in place of Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy due to Covid-19 protocols. The Saints extend their streak to 316 regular season games without having been shut out, dating to a 26-20 win at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on September 6, 2002 at Raymond James Stadium, the longest running streak in the NFL. Quarterback Taysom Hill completed 26-of-40 passes for 238 yards and a 70-yard touchdown to receiver Deonte Harris. With 11 carries for 101 yards, Hill became the third Saints quarterback to have 1,000 career rushing yards, joining Archie Manning and Aaron Brooks. Hill became the second Saints quarterback to rush for 100 yards in a game since Brooks ran for 108 yards at San Francisco on Dec. 10, 2000. Wide receiver/return specialist Deonte Harris entered the contest with 699 career punt return yards, fifth in club record books. Harris recorded 37 punt return yards Thursday increasing his career total to 736, moving past Reggie Bush into fourth in club record books. Harris also recorded four catches for 96 yards including a 70-yard touchdown reception. Harris now has 72- and 70-yard touchdown grabs on the season. New Orleans Saints vs. Dallas Cowboys Game Highlights and Photos: Saints vs Cowboys Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 13 Photos: Game Action | Saints vs Cowboys Week 13 2021 Calls of the Game: Saints vs. Cowboys - Dec. 2, 2021 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 13 vs. DAL Deonte Harris New Orleans Saints * Week 13 Stats: 4 REC, 96 YDS, 1 TD NFL Week 14 2021 | Saints 30, Jets 9 | Saints record: 6-7 New Orleans Saints at New York Jets Game Recap: Strong practice week carried over to game day for New Orleans Saints against Jets

New Orleans Saints Coach Sean Payton had a good feeling about what he saw in practice last week leading up to the game against the Jets at MetLife Stadium, and that feeling played out on Sunday in a 30-9 victory for the Saints in East Rutherford, N.J.

New Orleans Saints at New York Jets Game Stats to Note: The Saints' win improves their all-time record against the Jets to 8-6 and gives them a two-game winning streak against New York. Sunday's victory also gives the Saints a 5-3 record against the Jets on the road and their first win against the Jets in their second try at MetLife Stadium. Sunday's victory gives New Orleans a 2-1 record against AFC East opponents in 2021. The Saints' final meeting against the division's teams will be on Dec. 27, when New Orleans hosts the Miami Dolphins on "Monday Night Football." Sunday's win over the Jets gives Payton a 1-0 record against Jets Coach Robert Saleh. Payton now has a winning record against 63 of the 87 head coaches he's faced in his head coaching career. Saleh is the 73rd head coach that Payton has defeated. The Saints extended their streak to 317 consecutive regular-season games without having been shut out. The streak dates to a 26-20 win at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 6, 2002, at Raymond James Stadium. This is the longest-running streak in the NFL. New Orleans Saints vs. New York Jets Game Highlights and Photos: Saints at Jets Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 14 Photos: Game Action | Saints at Jets NFL Week 14 2021 Calls of the Game: Saints at Jets - Dec. 12, 2021 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 14 at NYJ Taysom Hill New Orleans Saints * Week 14 Stats: 15/21, 248 TOT YDS, 2 TOT TDS

Week 14 at NYJ Alvin Kamara New Orleans Saints * Week 14 Stats: 27 ATT, 145 TOT YDS, 1 TD

NFL Week 15 2021 | Saints 9, Buccaneers 0 | Saints record: 7-7 New Orleans Saints at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Game Recap: New Orleans Saints dominate Tampa Bay Buccaneers 9-0

The New Orleans Saints, minus their iconic head coach and their two star offensive tackles, relied on exceptional defense to beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 9-0 on Sunday, Dec. 19 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa.

Defensive end Cameron Jordan, who missed the first game of his career last week because of a positive Covid-19 test, had a massive game, sacking Tampa quarterback Tom Brady twice and forcing a Brady fumble in the third quarter that was recovered by Marshon Lattimore, Marcus Davenport and David Onyemata also had sacks and the Saints defense dominated the league's top offense. Defensive back C.J. Gardner-Johnson had the second turnover with an interception late in the fourth quarter which allowed the Saints to seal the win, the Saints' fourth straight in the regular season against the Brady-led Bucs.

New Orleans Saints at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Game Stats to Note: The New Orleans Saints shut out the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 9-0, their first shutout since a 20-0 win over next week's opponent, the Miami Dolphins in London's Wembley Stadium on Oct. 1, 2017. It was the 15th shutout in team history The Saints improve their regular-season record against the Buccaneers to 39-21 and give them their third consecutive regular-season series sweep of Tampa Bay. It marks only the third time that the club swept a division opponent in the regular-season series three straight times, having done so against the Los Angeles Rams as members of the NFC West from 1990-92 and with Tampa Bay from 2012-14. This win gives them their fourth consecutive road win against the Buccaneers and an 18-9 road record overall at Tampa Bay. The Saints held Tom Brady scoreless at halftime for only the 15th time in his career. The last time it happened he defeated Atlanta in Week 15, 2020. The only other time it happened was against the Saints, the Bucs lost 38-3 in Week 9, 2020, the largest losing deficit of Brady's career. Defensive end Cameron Jordan recorded six solo tackles, two tackles for loss, two sacks, and a forced fumble, which was recovered by cornerback Marshon Lattimore. Jordan has now surpassed the century mark joining Rickey Jackson as the only players to have 100 plus sacks with the Saints. They are the third pair of players to each top 100 plus sacks with the same team, joining a couple of legendary duos such as Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis from Colts, as well as Lawrence Taylor and Michael Strahan from the New York Giants. Jordan now takes sole possession of 37th all-time in sack leaders surpassing Hall of Fame linebacker Andre Tippett. New Orleans Saints at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Game Highlights and Photos: Saints at Buccaneers Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 15 Photos: Game Action #2 | Saints at Buccaneers NFL Week 15 2021 Cam Jordan forced fumble | Expert Analysis Week 15 New Orleans Saints Player of the Game: Week 15 at TB Cameron Jordan New Orleans Saints * Week 15 Stats: 5 TKL, 2 SK, 2 TFL, 1 FF Week 15 at TB Marquez Callaway New Orleans Saints * Week 15 Stats: 6 REC, 112 YDS NFL Week 16 2021 | Saints 3, Dolphins 20 | Saints record: 7-8 New Orleans Saints vs. Miami Dolphins Game Recap: Miami Dolphins beat New Orleans Saints 20-3 on 'Monday Night Football' | NFL Week 16

With 22 players out because of Covid-19 and the team starting its fourth quarterback of the season, the New Orleans Saints offense couldn't get on track against a rugged Miami defense and the Dolphins rolled to a 20-3 victory Monday, Dec. 27 at the Caesars Superdome.

Rookie quarterback Ian Book, a fourth-round pick out of Notre Dame who was starting after veteran quarterbacks Taysom Hill and Trevor Siemian landed on the Covid-19 list, had his second pass attempt tipped at the line of scrimmage and then intercepted and returned 28 yards for a Miami touchdown. That score and a 48-yard field goal by Jason Sanders allowed the Dolphins to take a 10-3 halftime lead. Miami put the game away when quarterback Tua Tagovailoa threw a 1-yard shuffle pass to receiver Jaylen Waddle for a touchdown in the third quarter. Waddle dominated the game with 10 catches for 92 yards. Miami added a 34-yard Sanders field goal in the fourth quarter.

New Orleans Saints vs. Miami Dolphins Game Stats to Note: The Saints extended their streak to 319 regular season games without having been shut out, dating to a 26-20 win at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 6, 2002 at Raymond James Stadium, the longest running streak in the NFL. Rookie quarterback Ian Book made his first career start Monday, finishing 12 of 20 for 135 yards and two interceptions. Book became the first Saints rookie to start a game at signal-caller since Danny Wuerffel on Oct. 19, 1997 vs. Carolina. Linebacker Pete Werner made his first start at middle linebacker in place of Demario Davis and led the Saints defense with 10 tackles. Werner also tied a career high for solo tackles with eight, a mark set earlier this season at Washington (10/10/21). The loss gives New Orleans a 1-1 record on "Monday Night Football" in their two appearances in 2021, a 24-23 record overall, and gives the Saints an 18-16 home record all-time on "Monday Night Football." Monday's loss gives the Saints a 1-1 mark against the Dolphins on "Monday Night Football." New Orleans Saints vs. Miami Dolphins Game Highlights and Photos: Saints vs Dolphins Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 16 Photos: Game Action | Saints vs Dolphins Week 16 2021 Calls of the Game: Saints vs Dolphins - Dec. 27, 2021 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 16 vs. MIA Lil'Jordan Humphrey New Orleans Saints * Week 16 stats: 3 REC, 70 YDS

NFL Week 17 2021 | Saints 18, Panthers 10 | Saints record: 8-8 New Orleans Saints vs. Carolina Panthers Game Recap: New Orleans Saints beat Carolina Panthers 18-10, stay in mix for playoffs

The New Orleans Saints offense and defense got off to a sluggish start Sunday, Jan. 2 vs. the Carolina Panthers at the Caesars Superdome but both units turned it on in the second half to secure an 18-10 win, keeping the team's playoff hopes alive going into the season finale at Atlanta.

The Saints fell behind 10-3 to Carolina (5-11) but the defense stiffened and kicker Brett Maher made three more field goals for New Orleans to lead 12-10 after three quarters. The Saints scored their first touchdown since Week 14 when quarterback Taysom Hill hit running back Alvin Kamara with a 12-yard scoring pass. Maher's extra-point attempt bounced off the upright.

New Orleans Saints vs. Carolina Panthers Game Stats to Note: The Saints extended their streak to 320 regular-season games without having been shut out, dating to a 26-20 win at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 6, 2002 at Raymond James Stadium, the longest running streak in the NFL. Defensive back C.J. Gardner-Johnson recorded his third interception of the season to seal the win Sunday, tying him for the team lead in picks with Marshon Lattimore and P.J. Williams. Linebacker Demario Davis became the first Saint to reach 100 total tackles in four consecutive seasons since safety Roman Harper (2008-12). Davis recorded five tackles Sunday. Quarterback Taysom Hill notched 45 rushing yards Sunday bringing his season total to 356, surpassing Saints legend Archie Manning's 351 yards in 1972 for third place in franchise record books. Hill completed 17-of-28 passes for 222 yards and one score. New Orleans Saints vs. Carolina Panthers Game Content Quick Links: Saints vs Panthers Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 17 Photos: Game Action | Saints vs Panthers Week 17 2021 Calls of the Game: Saints vs Panthers - Jan. 2, 2022 New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 17 vs. CAR Cameron Jordan New Orleans Saints * Week 17 Stats: 6 TKL, 3.5 SK, 3 TFL, 3 QH Week 17 vs. CAR Taysom Hill New Orleans Saints * Week 17 Stats: 17/28, 267 TOT YDS, 1 TD

NFL Week 18 2021 | Saints 30, Falcons 20 | Saints record: 9-8 New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons Game Recap: New Orleans Saints beat Atlanta Falcons 30-20 but denied spot in playoffs

The New Orleans Saints did their part in Atlanta - thrashing the Falcons 30-20 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sunday, Jan. 9.

But when the Los Angeles Rams blew a 17-point lead and lost to the San Francisco 49ers 27-24 in overtime, it kept the Saints out of the playoffs for the first time since the 2016 season.

The Saints end the 2021 season with a 9-8 record and winners of four of their final five games. Sunday's game was another example of what the team had to fight through all season - losing a star player to injury.

New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons Game Stats to Note: The Saints extended their streak to 321 regular-season games without having been shut out, dating to a 26-20 win at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 6, 2002 at Raymond James Stadium, the longest running streak in the NFL. With the win, New Orleans closes out the 2021 season at 9-8, making the Saints only the second current team to have at least five consecutive winning seasons, joining the Kansas City Chiefs (2013-). Running back Alvin Kamara finished with 146 rushing yards on a career-high 30 carries. Kamara now has 4,238 career rushing yards, surpassing Dalton Hilliard (1986-93) for fourth place in club record books. Sunday was Kamara's sixth career game with at least 100 rushing yards and his third such game of 2021 with 120 rushing yards each against the New York Giants in Week 4 and New York Jets in Week 14. Kamara has 603 career rushing yards vs. the Falcons, his most against any opponent. Rookie cornerback Paulson Adebo became only the fifth Saints rookie to record at least three interceptions in his rookie season after his second-quarter pick of Matt Ryan. Adebo joins cornerback Robert Massey (1989), safety Sammy Knight (1997), cornerback Marshon Lattimore (2017) and safety Marcus Williams (2017). Adebo finished with five tackles (three solo) and two pass breakups to go with the interception. New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons Game Highlights and Photos: Saints at Falcons Game Highlights | 2021 NFL Week 18 Photos: Game Action | Saints at Falcons Week 18 2021 Alvin Kamara's best plays from 162-yard game Week 18 | Saints-Falcons Highlights New Orleans Saints Players of the Game: Week 18 @ ATL WR Tre'Quan Smith New Orleans Saints * Week 18 Stats: 5 REC, 76 YDS, 1 TD

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