New Orleans Saints offense is facing injury woes entering visit to New York Jets
On Sunday, the 5-7 New Orleans Saints will have the privilege of facing the 3-9 New York Jets’ league-worst defense. Unfortunately for New Orleans, many of the offense’s key contributors will either play injured or miss the game entirely.
In October, starting quarterback Jameis Winston tore his ACL, leaving a major hole at the most important position in the sport. In his absence, Trevor Siemian (four starts) and Taysom Hill (one start) have started the last five games for New Orleans. The Saints are 0-5 without Winston after starting the year at 5-2 with him under center.
To make things worse, Hill injured his throwing hand in last week’s loss to Dallas. He played through it, finishing the game with four interceptions, but his health remains a major question mark heading into the game against the Jets. Hill is expected to start but is still dealing with the effects of his injury.
It hasn’t only been the quarterback position that has hindered the Saints from finding themselves in the win column.
Star wide receiver and former NFL Offensive Player of the Year Michael Thomas hasn’t played all season, Pro Bowl guard Andrus Peat is on injured reserve, running back Alvin Kamara hasn’t played since Week 9, and maybe most importantly, star tackles Terron Armstead and Ryan Ramczyk have both missed extended periods of time all season.
Luckily for New Orleans, Kamara and Armstead should both return this week. However, Ramczyk will likely remain out.
Adding more issues, running backs Mark Ingram and Ty Montgomery tested positive for COVID-19 late in the week, meaning they’ll both likely be out on Sunday.
In what is already seen as one of the weakest wide receiver rooms in the league, continuity has not been a friend to the group this season. Wide receiver/return specialist Deonte Harris will miss this week’s game due to a three-game suspension for a DUI. Also, Kenny Stills was released on Tuesday and Lil’Jordan Humphrey was added to the injury report on Thursday.
Starting tight end Adam Trautman will also miss Sunday’s game vs. the Jets.
To summarize, on Sunday the Saints will be without their QB1 (Winston), RB2 (Ingram), RB3 (Montgomery), WR1 (Thomas), WR3 (Harris), TE1 (Trautman), LG1 (Peat), and RT1 (Ramczyk) – all with a banged-up Hill starting at quarterback.
The Saints will face a struggling Jets defense this weekend, but with all of the instability on the offensive side of the ball, scoring could be an uphill battle.
As for the Jets, head coach Robert Saleh and defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich have to take full advantage of playing such an injury-riddled offense. The number one priority needs to be stopping Pro Bowl running back Alvin Kamara, as he’s far and away the team’s best weapon at the moment.
Kamara ranks fifth among running backs with 38.8 receiving yards per game this season. He is likely comping at the bit to take on a New York defense that has given up 62.8 receiving yards per game to running backs, ranking second-worst in the NFL.
Keeping Kamara’s aerial prowess in check will be the key for the Jets, especially considering that Hill’s injury might lead to more short passes for the elite running back.
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