Sunday, October 18, 2009
Rapid Reaction: Saints 48, Giants 27
By Dan Graziano
Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley
NEW ORLEANS -- If the Giants are the best team in the NFC East, it's time to reevaluate what we think of the division. In what was billed as a measuring stick game for both teams, the Giants didn't even belong on the same field as the Saints.
From the opening drive, Saints quarterback Drew Brees served notice that he would shred what we believed to be one of the best defenses in the league. Once Brees located where Giants safety C.C. Brown was lining up, he went to town. I've never seen a defensive back have a worse game. Early on, Brees found Lance Moore for big gains. He then started dialing up Marques Colston, who's emerged as one of the best receivers in the game.
The worst part was that Tom Coughlin and offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride somehow let themselves get lured into a track meet with the Saints. Instead of trying to slow things down with the running game, Gilbride tried to match Brees throw for throw. On this day, that was a huge miscalculation.
Saints coach Sean Payton softened up the Giants' defense with the downfield passing game and then he gashed them with the running game. The Giants better hope they just saw the best team in the league. Otherwise, they have a ton of work to do.
Brees was 23-of-30 for 369 yards and four touchdowns. Payton mercifully removed him from the game in the fourth quarter. The Giants actually had a brief chance to stay in this game late in the first half, but Eli Manning fumbled after being sacked by safety Roman Harper. The Saints quickly scored to make it 34-17 at halftime -- and didn't look back.
Giants backup David Carr tacked on a late touchdown pass to Hakeem Nicks to make the score look a little better. But there's no dressing up this performance. The Giants were dominated at every turn.