New Orleans Saints vs St. Louis Rams
Friday August 8, 2014 Edwards Jones Dome in St. Louis
Series history: The Saints have only played two other teams more (Atlanta 87 times) and San Francisco (73) than they have taken on the Rams. The Rams lead the all-time series 40-31 including last season’s 27-16 win over New Orleans
Last time: December 13, 2013 the Rams beat the Saints 27-16 at the Edwards Jones Dome in St. Louis. Sean Payton has posted a 16-13 overall record in pre-season games as head coach of the New Orleans Saints.
Noteworthy: The Saints posted a 3-1 mark in the 2013 pre-season with three straight wins over Kansas City, Oakland and Houston. The Black and Gold fell 24-21 to Miami in the final preseason game a year ago.
What to watch: How many starters will play and for how long? It’s the first pre-season game so history tells us that the starting players won’t see much action in this contest. Other than a series or two I would not expect much from the stars of Black and Gold. However that gives the possible stars of the future to give us all a good look-see.
RB battle: RBs Mark Ingram and Pierre Thomas are more complete backs than the rest of the group of RBs right now, but Khiry Robinson and Travaris Cadet have both got explosive first steps, and these RBs get the hard yards. Robinson looks to be a player that can earn more touches this season by having a good pre-season showing. And Cadet can be used in a variety of ways on offense and special teams. Derrick Strozier and Timothy Flanders should both see some action in the Rams game too.
WR separation: Coslton, Cooks, Stills - these guys are safe, but what about the rest of the group? Is Robert Meachum in the plans, Nick Toon, or could someone like Seantavius Jones, Charles Hawkins, Andy Tanner or Brandon Coleman get a roster spot? Regardless of who’s playing QB, the WRs will be looking to take advantage of every ball thrown their way.
Can I kick it? Shayne Graham is a proven veteran and youngster Derek Dimke has been impressive this pre-season. Both have rarely missed field goals during practice and the roster spot could come down to who kicks the best in the Saints four pre-season games.
Stepping up in the secondary: So far during training camp players like Corey White, Patrick Robinson, and Marcus Ball have taken turns in making plays during practice and for the "Black and Gold Scrimmage." But can anyone solidify themselves as a lock to make the roster? This has been P-Rob’s best camp by far, Ball has stepped up his play and Corey White has a string of four pretty good practices going for him. It will be interesting to see if one or all of these guys can continue to step up!