Aug 9, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints Saintsations cheerleaders perform during the second half of a preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
With the Raiders in New Orleans to take on the Saints for Week Two of their 2013 NFL Preseason, we reached out to editor Chris Roling of WhoDatDish.com to discuss the Saints roster this season as well as what to expect when the Silver and Black invade the Superdome tonight. Here is our interview
JBB: How long do you expect the Saints first team to be on the field?
Chris: Two series at a maximum for the offense, with the exception being at left tackle. Charles Brown and the others fighting for the starting spot at the position with Jermon Bushord gone are going to see a consistent rotation. The defense is a different story as the coaching staff is still trying to figure out who works where. The players had a lot of issues with the scheme last week so expect to see the starters longer than the offensive starters.JBB: The Saints play in a different conference than the Raiders. What are some key things Raider Nation should watch for on Friday.
Despite the different conferences the Saints are actually pretty similar to two teams in the AFC West. The Saints this year are trying to better balance the high-flying passing attack with a good dose of power running, similar to what the Denver Broncos
do with Peyton Manning. New Orleans is also similar to Kansas City in that it tries to get the ball out to play-making backs in space. The Saints offensively are actually very good practice for the Raiders in terms of prep for both the Broncos and Chiefs, especially the latter with Andy Reid in town.
JBB: Dennis Allen had a successful run in New Orleans with Sean Payton as an assistant. Do you think he can capture success in the NFL as a head coach?
Chris: Yes. Allen is a strong leader who inherited a bad situation, but things are finally on the mend. Like a young quarterback, it is best to wait 2-3 years to see how things develop with a coach. Allen knows what he is doing and is receiving a fair chance at keeping the position. The pieces are beginning to fall in place and I like what I see, but it’s clearly a process that is going to take an extended period of time.
JBB: With the starters taking a backseat to depth players, who are your players on the Saints to watch outside of the first string?
Chirs: Wide receiver Andy Tanner is a fun one to watch. He had a monster preseason last year before going down with an injury. He was explosive last week and could actually push a guy like Nick Toon for a roster spot. Rookie Terron Armstead, otherwise known as the athletic freak, will be one to keep an eye on at left tackle. Defensive tackle/Defensive end Tyrunn Walker exploded on to the scene last week as well, showcasing an ability to put unorthodox pressure on the quarterback as a down lineman in a 3-4. He now has a shot at making the roster if he can keep it up.
JBB: Lastly we couldn’t let you leave us without a prediction. Who is taking the bragging rights in the Big Easy?
Preseason mostly comes down to depth, so I’d have to give the nod to the Saints in that regard. The Saints have some quality depth at important positions, especially on the offense line, at wide receiver, running back and even quarterback. For that reason alone, this one really shouldn’t be all that close.
Raiders 13, Saints 30
Give Chris a read at WhoDatDish.com for more New Orleans Saints news and analysis.