There's really only one word to describe that performance. Dedicated. Who would have thought the Saints would have been so committed to celebrating their 50th year as a franchise that they would fumble away their ever-so-slight playoff hopes just to give their 50 most accomplished players a live reenactment of what the team looked like when a vast majority of them were on it. That was the ugliest brand of football they have played all season, but it was a hell of a tribute to almost an entire half century of futility. Don't say that this current Saints team doesn't know how to honor those that came before them, because that game - from start to finish - was a walk down the long, dark road that is memory lane.
In all seriousness, there is one positive that can be taken from yesterday and it's that the false narrative of this team being a handful of unfortunate plays, over the course of a 12 games, away from playoff contention is all but dead. Can't claim that a bounce here and there would have changed the trajectory of the season after they publicly flat lined when what little hope the season had left was at stake. There's no more "if these 6-12 mistakes didn't happen then we'd be a contender" following a game in which the Saints made 6-12 mistakes in the first 6-12 minutes. That effort was so uninspiring that you could argue their most encouraging plays were their own comically dropped interceptions. If that were a recipe for success than success would be inedible because I could barely stomach watching them do everything in their power to woefully lose a winnable football game.
Hey, this season may be lost but there's reason for optimism moving forward. Without having to worry about the postseason Sean Payton will have at least a few more weeks to figure out how to make a member of each of the other 30 NFL teams not named the Rams testify against him in court. Clearly he does his best work while staring at someone who almost cost him his career from across the field. Can't imagine the complete lack of urgency and emotion would have been their undoing if the Lions provided a Gregg Williams-type muse. Instead, all they had to motivate them was the chance to keep things interesting in their division and that obviously wasn't enough to even consider showing up at home against a conference opponent. If only there was a little more grudge to that match then maybe the Saints wouldn't have wasted all their productive plays on emasculating their former, disgraced defensive coordinator.
Oh well, they didn't and now they have 4 more relative meaningless games and a long offseason staring them in the face. If we are being honest, that's all they really deserve after a pitiful performance that was only successful in reminding fans and former players alike just how bad this team has been throughout the years.
P.S. Welcome home guys, sorry they didn't tidy up for your arrival...
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