The loss to Carolina could be compared to the 2012 season. They were down. They came back and in the end they lost.
Drew Brees and company were trying to close out the season on a positive note. It didn't happen. You can't place the blame on Brees. He passed for 396 yards, giving him 5-thousand-177 yards this season, becoming the first NFL player to surpass 5-thousand yards three times.
Brees closed out the season with 43 TD passes following 4 touchdown strikes against the Panthers. He becomes the first NFL player with 40 or more touchdowns passes in consecutive seasons.
The New Orleans defense had a terrible year. In fact, they close out the season as the worse defense in NFL history.
Steve Spagnuolo's defensive scheme just didn't click on all cylinders all season long and for the second time this year the Saints defense gave up a total 530 yards in a single game.
Panthers quarterback Cam Newton passed for 248 yards and threw a pick six, when linebacker Jonathan Vilma stepped in front of the pass and took it to the house.
With that one exception, Newton completed crucial third down passes, keeping drives alive and running back DeAngelo Williams took advantage ripping off 210 yards and two touchdowns.
Saints defensive back Roman Harper said, "As bad as we played we were up at halftime and we come out and give up long runs and do different things. We don't do the things that we need to do to beat this team." He added,"We know this team very well. We know we've got to out execute and win on 3rd downs and we can't allow big runs and we did that today."
They did that all season long. The Saints defense now has the distinction of giving up more yards in a single, 7-thousand-42, breaking the old record of 6-thousand-743 yards established by the Baltimore Colts in 1981.
Defensive lineman Tom Johnson of Moss Point said, "Always difficult when you lose. We came into the season knowing the situation and we tried to overcome it, not really using it as an excuse." Johnson added, "We've got to go out there and make plays when they present itself and this year we didn't make enough of them."
If the Saints had developed any type of consistency on the defensive side of the football, New Orleans would have cracked the NFL playoffs, however starting the season off with 4 consecutive losses, basically did in any playoff hopes.
Seven wins and nine losses was a terrible year for the New Orleans Saints but on a positive note coach Sean Payton will be back for the 2013 season.
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