Two of the longest-tenured coaches in the league face one another in Week 3 of the NFL regular season. Sean Payton leads the New Orleans Saints on the road once again. Waiting is Bill Belichick and the rebuilt New England Patriots. Both teams enter this contest with a 1-1 record. Neither will want to slip under .500 for the season. Look for this to be a hard-fought contest. This will be the fourth time that the Saints and Patriots have met under these head coaches. The history could detail how the Saints and Patriots game will unfold in Week 3 this season.
Saints And Patriots in the Sean Payton Era
Under Sean Payton, the Saints have played the Patriots three previous times. Currently, the Patriots are winning this matchup with an overall record of 2-1. In these games, the Saints and Patriots have scored almost an identical number of points. The Saints have put up 85 points on the Patriots, while the Patriots have scored 83 against the Saints. Turnover-wise, the Patriots have committed four turnovers in these games while the Saints have coughed it up three times. Two of the three games were blowouts for both teams while the other was a nail-biter, coming down to the last play. If history holds, this year’s game could be close. This is how the previous games went and what it could mean for this year’s matchup.
Both the Patriots and Saints have a blowout against the other team. In 2009, the Saints and Patriots played on Monday Night Football in New Orleans. By halftime, the game was 24-10 in favor of the Saints. The final score was 38-17, keeping the Saints perfect on the season at 11-0. The Patriots offense had three turnovers in the game and their defense surrendered 480 total yards of offense to Drew Brees and the Saints. This was one of the games in the 2009 season that showed the Saints as being a real threat in the NFL. And, of course, the Saints would cap this season with a Super Bowl win.
Almost the exact opposite happened during the 2017 season. The New England Patriots were up 30-13 by halftime and won the game by a score of 36-20. There were no turnovers in this game for either team. The issue with the Saints was that they allowed the Patriots to put up 555 yards of offense. The final score does not show just how uneven this game was. The Saints put up a late touchdown to bring them within 16. The Saints had 429 yards of offense but Drew Brees was not at his best and completed only 60 percent of his passes against the Belichick defense.
History Could Indicate a Close Game
So far the games between the Saints and Patriots have gone blowout, nail-biter, blowout. This could indicate that it is time for another close game between the two teams. In 2013, the Patriots needed a last-second Tom Brady touchdown to win the game. Both teams had over 130 yards of rushing. And the Saints finished the game with 361 yards of total offense while the Patriots had 376. The Saints lost the turnover battle though as they had two and the Patriots had one. This year’s matchup could also come down to the wire just like this one.
This game will mean a lot to both teams. The Saints will be trying to keep pace in the NFC South with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Carolina Panthers and the Patriots will be trying to keep pace with the Buffalo Bills in the AFC East. Neither Sean Payton nor Bill Belichick will give an inch though. Expect to see one of the best-coached games so far this season and a battle that could be determined by the turnover battle.