Pete Carmichael is Not the Solution for New Orleans Saints Offense

Pete Carmichael Saints Offense

The New Orleans Saints seems to have played it incredibly safe trying to rebuild this off-season. After promoting Dennis Allen from defensive coordinator to head coach, the Saints also decided to keep Pete Carmichael on board for the offense. Allen’s success with the Saints defense in recent history proves he deserves a shot at a head coaching job. The effectiveness of defensive-minded head coaches can be debated, but Allen’s recent record speaks for itself. The issue with the Saints the last two seasons was not the defense but the offense. Sean Payton and Pete Carmichael were not able to give the offense direction. With the Saints keeping Carmichael, it seems as if it will be status quo for the offensive side of the ball. Anticipating a lack of significant change, a Sean Payton-light offense will not be the solution for the Saints offense.

Pete Carmichael is Not the Solution for New Orleans Saints Offense

No one knew that Sean Payton was going to call it quits at the end of last season. If he was, the Saints likely would have had a succession plan in place. After Payton’s announcement, the Saints scrambled to schedule interviews around the league. This was done well after several teams had already begun their search for a new head coach. The timing likely hurt the Saints ability to hire, as several teams had already picked out who they were hiring. Dennis Allen taking over as head coach was a likely outcome, as several teams were interested in Allen already. With this promotion though, the Saints were in need of finding someone to run an offense. Instead of shaking things up though, the Saints kept the job in-house as well.

Pete Carmichael now takes over the offense. Carmichael has worked under Sean Payton for the last 13 years. He very seldom called plays, as it was widely known that this was Payton’s offense. As great as Payton was with offense though, the Saints still struggled in recent seasons. This was an offense that Sean Payton himself was not able to get to a Super Bowl in the last 10 years. It is uncertain that Carmichael will be able to do what Payton could not. With his experience, expect a Sean Payton-like approach to the offense, but that is clearly not the answer in New Orleans.

Saints Offense Under Pete Carmichael

There was only one season that Pete Carmichael was asked to do more for the Saints offense. During Sean Payton’s suspension year, Carmichael was asked to call plays and run the offense. The Saints finished this season with just seven wins on the season. Offensively, the Saints statistics were good though as they scored the third-most points in the NFL during the season. Drew Brees had one of his worst seasons though. Brees had his worst completion percentage of his Saints career with Carmichael at just 63%. Brees also threw the second-most interceptions of his Saints career during the 2012 season. Carmichael leading the offense has not been seen much, but hope is hard to find with the statistics currently known.

Status Quo Could Hurt Offense

It would be difficult for any team to replace an offensive mastermind like Sean Payton. The Saints were not prepared for Payton’s sudden retirement and that could have some consequence on the lack of staffing changes within the organization. Dennis Allen gets a deserved shot at being the head coach, but the offense could have used this opportunity for reinvention. Instead, the Saints kept the status quo and seem to be going with a Sean Payton-light approach to offense. With Payton himself not able to get this team to a Super Bowl, it is hard to imagine those simply running his system would have the ability.

Main Photo: Embed from Getty Images