AFR: Decision to punt unlike Sean Payton

AFR: Decision to punt unlike Sean Payton

GLENDALE, AZ (WVUE) - - When I think of Sean Payton as Saints Head Coach, I think bold, aggressive and confident.

I do not think of him punting the ball on 4th &6, at his own eight-yard line, with two minutes to play and down five points. It's just not him. Which is why when he elected to do so, I did a double-take.

The call didn't cost the Saints the game. Going 1-4 in the red zone did that. And I can somewhat understand the percentages. Punting with two timeouts could potentially give you better field position with a fresh set of downs. Although I'm not convinced even with three quick stops, that the overall net field position gain, especially with no timeouts, would have been enough to risk losing the possession. The best-case scenario for the Saints would have been getting the ball back with about a minute left around their own 20-yard line.

But all of that is besides the point.

The point is, this is Sean Payton. If his team is going to go down, they are always going to go down swinging, right? If he's going to make a mistake, he is going to make it with his foot pressed firmly on the gas, especially with Drew Brees, right?

"I think with the two timeouts and the situation being two minutes, that's something we would normally do and I think most people would, " Payton said after the game, defending the decision.

Maybe. Maybe not.

I have a different theory. I can't shake the feeling that Payton is simply not confident in this team. At least not right now.

I mean, with the game on the line he elected to take the ball OUT of Drew Brees' hands when all he needed was six yards. That should tell you where his confidence level is. His trust in his offense, even with Brees, is not there.

Clearly, the odds were stacked against them in either scenario. Even if they convert, there is no guarantee they would have marched down the field and scored. Then again, they could've done exactly that, like Brees has done so many time before.

We'll never know.

And it's so unlike Sean Payton to not even try to find out.

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