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Monday, December 9, 2013
Saints’ Week 14 snap counts

By Mike Triplett

A look at the New Orleans Saints' snap counts from Sunday night's 31-13 victory over the Carolina Panthers:

OFFENSE (65 snaps)

Quarterback – Drew Brees 65
Tight end – Jimmy Graham 47, Benjamin Watson 27, Josh Hill 1
Wide receiver – Marques Colston 51, Kenny Stills 40, Lance Moore 28, Robert Meachem 19
Running back – Pierre Thomas 37, Darren Sproles 15, Mark Ingram 15, Khiry Robinson 3
Fullback – Jed Collins 31
Offensive tackle – Zach Strief 65, Charles Brown 65, Bryce Harris 8
Guard – Jahri Evans 65, Ben Grubbs 65, Tim Lelito 1
Center – Brian De La Puente 65
Safety (on kneel-downs) – Malcolm Jenkins 2

Thoughts: Watching live, I felt like Moore was playing more than he had in recent weeks. But that wasn't the case. In fact, Moore (28 snaps) and Stills (40 snaps) both wound up hitting the exact number of their average snap count from the previous six weeks -- which I outlined in an extensive breakdown of Moore's playing time on Sunday morning. Moore just wound up getting more early targets, finishing with three catches for 40 yards. … Strief's injured ankle obviously held up well. He played every snap and appeared to hold up well. … Sproles' snap count continues to be low every week. I know he also returns punts, and he gets used more when the Saints are in their hurry-up, two-minute offense. But I wonder if coach Sean Payton isn't intentionally trying to keep him fresh for later in the season like he did with Reggie Bush in 2009. … Hill played only one snap before leaving the game with a hamstring injury. The severity is unknown.

DEFENSE (63 snaps)

Safety – Malcolm Jenkins 63, Kenny Vaccaro 63, Roman Harper 47, Isa Abdul-Quddus 12
Cornerback – Keenan Lewis 63, Corey White 60,
Inside linebacker – Curtis Lofton 63, David Hawthorne 51, Will Herring 5
Outside linebacker – Junior Galette 62, Parys Haralson 17
Defensive end – Cameron Jordan 59, Akiem Hicks 45, Tom Johnson 19,
Defensive tackle – John Jenkins 39, Tyrunn Walker 18, Brodrick Bunkley 7

Thoughts: The Saints went with their most traditional lineup for much of this game, with four down linemen, two true linebackers, two cornerbacks and three safeties. They did start out in the 3-4 with Haralson on one edge. But they didn't use the five-linebacker packages they had used against both San Francisco (successfully) and Seattle (unsuccessfully). Not sure if that would have been the game plan all along against Carolina -- or if defensive coordinator Rob Ryan decided to go back to his base package after some new tricks backfired against the Seahawks. … Speaking of sticking with the base, the Saints clearly decided to lean heavily on both Galette and Jordan, playing them almost every snap. Good move. That's an especially high snap count for Galette, who had three sacks in the game. … Bunkley was limited by a back injury during the game, and the severity of the injury is unknown.