The Saints return to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome wasn't exactly how they would have liked it to be as the Jacksonville Jaguars scored with 13 seconds left to pick up a 27-24 preseason win. Jags quarterback Jordan Palmer connected with Kevin Elliot on an 11-yard touchdown pass for the win.
Quarterback play earlier in the game was both a good and bad story line. Jacksonville quarterback Blaine Gabbert moved the football up and down the field with ease on the Saints first string defense finishing the night 13 of 16 for 112 yards to go along with two touchdowns. Gabbert's play help the Jaguars jump out to a 17-3 lead.
Saints quarterback Drew Brees and the first string offense eventually got going after getting just a field goal in the first quarter. The only other possession in the quarter was a three and out. Brees was sacked and fumbled the ball over to the Jaguars on the first Saints offensive play in the second quarter. Next time on the field Brees lead the offense on a 9 play, 85 yard drive that took 4:54 off the clock resulting in an eight yard Devery Henderson touchdown pass. That drive would end the night for Brees as he finished 10 of 13 for 133 yards.
Assistant head coach Joe Vitt wasn't happy following the game with how Jacksonville moved the ball so well against his defense, "I'm disappointed with the way the defense tackled to start the game," Vitt said. "The overall tackling in the first half was very, very disappointing."
Seeing Brees take a hit that resulted in a fumble didn't sit well with Vitt either, "We need to do a better job protecting Drew. We have a lot of coaching to do, and things to clean up. I am ready to get it done this week."
The Saints had three players come out of the game Friday night due to injury with two of them appearing to be severe. Linebacker Chris Chamberlain had to be helped off the field in the second quarter after his left knee seem to give out while trying to tackle Jacksonville running back Montell Owens.
Saints linebacker Ezra Butler tweeting last night "Everybody keep @Chambo57 in yalls prayers...Thank ya...Much love..." Punter Thomas Morestead was among other players retweeting the sentiment.
Saturday morning Chamberlain himself tweeted "Thanks for the prayers, about to get an MRI. Hoping for good news. Will keep you posted #WHODATNATION."
Receiver Andy Tanner also went down in the second quarter suffering a left ankle injury. Tanner was blocking for running back Travaris Cadet who ran into the back of Tanner's leg.
"Andy Tanner's injury just break your heart. Absolutely breaks your heart," Saints quarterback Drew Brees said following the game about the wide out's injury. The team has not given details as to the extent of the injury.
Tanner was having a solid training camp pushing for a roster spot. The wide receiver spot suddenly is very thin for the Saints. Nick Toon is expected to return to practice this week but has already missed three preseason games thanks to a foot injury. Adrian Arrington had surgery this week to repair a meniscus in his knee and the team has yet to give a time table on his return. Aside from Marques Colston, Lance Moore, and Devery Henderson, the team has Courtney Roby and Joe Morgan that are likely good enough to see action if the season were to start now. Marques Clark, Kevin Hardy, and Derek Moye are the other receivers listed on the roster.
Safety Isa Abdul-Quddus appeared to suffer a head injury as he looked woozy coming off the field. Quddus did not return to the game.