(Image credit: Chuck Cook/USA Today Sports)
Written by: Nicholas Mullick
Well, it is official as the New Orleans Saints have not been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs this season. The Saints missing the playoffs was not a surprise but the Saints were a lot better than what I myself thought they were at the beginning of the season. It was a hard-fought season for the Saints but they had a ton of unlucky moments this season. There are many issues involving the Saints this season. In this article, I will go through three main reasons why they did not make the playoffs.
1. The Cap Crunch during the offseason.
The New Orleans Saints during Drew Brees' last season was their last true chance at making a Super Bowl and winning another ring for Drew Brees. Not only because Drew Brees was going to retire at the end of the season but it was because of the salary cap issues the team would have to face. In fact, during the 2020 offseason, the Saints had around 100 million dollars that were under the salary cap. Yeah, so the Saints had to make cheap additions to improve the team and completely fix their salary cap. What stinks as well for the Saints is that during the next offseason according to spotrac, they will still be 60 million dollars under the salary cap. So there is still plenty left to go when it comes to restructuring the salary cap for the Saints. This is going to be an issue to keep an eye on during the offseason for the New Orleans Saints. The Cap Crunch during the offseason heavily affected the Saints in this season.
2. Michael Thomas being MIA
Listen I know that Michael Thomas was a growing locker room cancer but you can’t deny how talented Michael Thomas is on this offense. Unfortunately for both the New Orleans Saints and WR Michael Thomas he had an ankle injury that was a lot more severe than originally thought. Thomas would be placed on the Physically Unable to Perform list (PUP list). There were expectations that he would be able to play this season but it was not to be as he never played a snap at all during the 2020 season. The Saints never got their #1 receiver back and had to hope receivers stepped up. One was WR Marquez Callaway and has a ton of potential but he is not a number 1 receiver but more of a number 2 or 3 receiver. Tre’Quan Smith was disappointing and Deontae Harris is more of a special teams player. Harris was not that good as well. The Saints need to find a number 1 receiver to help improve their offense.
3. Rotational Door at Quarterback
Yeah, this was an unsurprising one that made the list. The New Orleans Saints this season had a complete rotational door at quarterback. Jameis Winston was the best out of the bunch but unfortunately suffered a Torn ACL week 8 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Next up was Taysom Hill and well he can’t stay healthy. Even if he is healthy Taysom Hill is not a consistent player. I think he would be better utilized as a swiss army knife than as an every-down starting quarterback. When Hill got hurt the next quarterback up was Trevor Siemian Siemian never started a game since he was a New York Jets during the 2019 season where he got injured due to a dirty hit by DE/EDGE Myles Garrett. Yes, I call it a dirty hit as unsurprisingly the refs missed calling it a penalty. When Trevor Siemian was placed on the Covid-19 list with Taysom Hill the next QB up was 4th round rookie Ian Book. I am a Notre Dame college fan and I was not even a fan of Ian Book during his time in college. When Ian Book played he was completely awful against the Miami Dolphins. So yeah the Saints had to start 4 different quarterbacks this season. The Saints absolutely need to find consistency at the QB position. I will also say that the Saints do not have a franchise QB currently on their roster.