One. Just one. One meaningless victory out of four meaningless contests is all I ask. I don't care that it didn't come against the lowly Cleveland Browns, but - at this point - the New Orleans Saints just need to win a single preseason game to prove that they are still capable of doing so. The results may still be a month away from mattering, but the psyche of a fanbase that has seen it's team lose every single game played in August over the last two offseasons most certainly is not. I don't know if the deja-vu of being 0-4 in glorified practice sessions whose true winner is determined by which team comes away healthier is something that will haunt this team, but I'll be damned if it won't weigh on those with a vested interest in them.
At the end of the day, I truly don't give a shit that the Saints lost to a bad team on a deep pass to a white wide receiver that cleanly beat a porous defensive effort for a late, game winning touchdown. The list of things that matter exponentially more than a victory that would be nothing but moral is as follows...
- Their rookie class (or the portion of it that was actually able to play) - led by Alvin Kamara - collectively put forth an admirable effort.
- Their first string defense held a first string offense - albeit one with a second rate quarterback - to virtually nothing.
- Their receiving core continued to prove that it's shockingly deep (shoutout to Tommy Lee Lewis) without Brandin Cooks.
- The oft-questioned pass rush looked above average, and also highlighted the impressive resurgence of a guy whose recurrent ACL issues have lowered expectations in Hau'oli Kikaha.
All those things are far more important than the outcome of a game that Drew Brees, Cameron Jordan, Mark Ingram, and Adrian Peterson casually watched - in it's entirety - from the sidelines. Still, for the love of all that is holy, I'm going to need this potentially false optimism to result in something better than a winless preseason. If only to show me that this year is at least mildly different before recent history has me thinking that some practice games are a precursor to yet another depressing 7-9 season.
P.S. I would NOT want to be the one held responsible for making cuts at the wide receiver position...