The New Orleans Saints arrived at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida Sunday afternoon ready to right the wrongs they committed against the Atlanta Falcons. After their listless performance last Sunday, quarterback Drew Brees threw three touchdown passes as the Saints defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 34-17. Wide receivers Ted Ginn, Jr. and Michael Thomas in addition to tight end Jared Cook caught touchdowns. In Thomas’s case, the Ohio State product became the first player with at least 90 receptions in each of his first four NFL seasons, had eight catches for 114 yards. That boosted his totals for 2019 to 94 receptions for 1,141 yards. The previous high for most catches in the first 10 games of a season was 89 by Hall of Famer Marvin Harrison and Atlanta’s Julio Jones.

“It’s just what we see every day in practice. Maybe it’s one of those things that when it’s all said and done you’ll look back and you’ll really appreciate it. I just love his mindset. He is a ‘I want the ball, I will get open, I will make the play for you’ guy,” Brees said.

“I’ve played with a lot of good ones, a lot of great ones, and the thing that’s common with those guys is the trust factor,” Brees added. “You have to be able to anticipate certain things which allow you to play with confidence and be accurate and make a lot of those throws that others might not try to make.”

Tampa Bay quarterback Jameis Winston completed 30 of 51 passes for 313 yards and threw two touchdowns. He also threw four interceptions, leading the National Football League with eighteen. Yesterday, the Saints had the beleaguered Winston under duress all afternoon. Winston was sacked twice and pressured all day by a persistent pass rush that left him hobbling across the field on a sore ankle to try to make the tackle on Marcus Williams’ long interception return for a touchdown up the New Orleans sideline.

“Too many mistakes to beat a good team,” Tampa Bay coach Bruce Arians said.

Wide receiver Mike Evans even dropped a pass as the Saints defense held him to four receptions in the game (one in the first half).

“It’s the exact same coverages as the last time they played us” Evans said. “A lot of two-man and cover-2 almost every single snap. If I’m outside, it’s pretty much a double-team.”

Evans added other teams employ a similar scheme at times but not as “big of a dose.”

“If you look up the stats, they’re probably in two-high at least 90 percent,” Evans said. “They’re a good defense. They can switch it up on you. This time they just were very basic. They were just getting after us.”

Even though the Buccaneers have lost five out of their last six after starting the season 2-2, Evans is seven yards away to becoming the second receiver in NFL history to begin his first six seasons with at least 1,000 receiving yards. Hall of Famer Randy Moss is the other one.

Norcross High School product and Saints running back Alvin Kamara ran for 75 yards on 13 carries. He also had a team-high 10 receptions for 47 yards.

“It’s huge,” Kamara said of getting back on track after losing to the Falcons. “Any time you lose, it’s just a little bit more of a heightened awareness to go into the next game, execute and … come out with a victory.”

UP NEXT

The Saints will return to the Louisiana Superdome to face the 5-5 Carolina Panthers.

The Buccaneers will travel to Mercedes-Benz Stadium to take on the 3-7 Atlanta Falcons.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans (13) makes a catch in front of New Orleans Saints cornerback P.J. Williams (26) and free safety Marcus Williams (43) during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 17, 2019, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio)

Itoro Umontuen currently serves as Managing Editor of The Atlanta Voice. Upon his arrival to the historic publication, he served as their Director of Photography. As a mixed-media journalist, Umontuen...

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