The New Orleans Saints look to improve their red-zone defense
By Bob Garcia
As the season gets tougher, the Saints are making adjustments to move up in the rankings
The New Orleans Saints look to improve their defensive play in the red zone against the Chicago Bears this weekend. They have allowed opposing teams to score touchdowns on 19 of 22 trips inside their 20-yard line this season, and it’s time to put a stop to it.
“It’s not one specific thing,” New Orleans coach Sean Payton said. “Obviously, we’re trying to force field goals, that’s both in the running game and the passing game. If you go all the way back to the start of the season, at the 2-yard line and (Tampa Bay quarterback) Tom Brady runs a quarterback sneak, that’s not a good thing.
So, it begins with defending tight quarters more aggressively. We’ve had a couple calls, that’s not the discussion.” He continued, “The discussion is being able to play the defense called, contest the throws and understand what we’re trying to take away and fit properly. That’s the key and I think that will be important in this game, just as (will be) the third down matchup.”
The Saints played much better red-zone defense last season and hope they can turn things around against the Bears. This season Chicago has struggled in the red zone and has only two rushing touchdowns this season, which should make things easier for the Saints.
“It’s something that we have to continue to work at,” defensive tackle Malcom Brown said. “We come here every week and we see the numbers like everybody else. We’ve just got to work at it every week to try to get better at it. Just try to transfer that stuff (in practice) to the game.”