AFR: Point the finger at Payton

AFR: Point the finger at Payton

HOUSTON, TX (WVUE) - No more scapegoats. No more excuses. Enough defensive coordinators and kickers have already fallen on the sword.

The Saints are now 4-7. And it's officially time to point the finger at the man in charge.....Sean Payton.

Sunday's debacle was just the latest example.

With a chance to improve to 5-6 and move to within one game of the final playoff spot, the Saints came out flat, lethargic and even disinterested. The game had a very weird flow to it, almost as if the players were sleepwalking on the field with zero sense of urgency. I found myself even zoning out a few times in the press box.

At no point during Sunday's 24-6 defeat was there ever a feeling that the Saints would make any sort of run to win.

That's on Payton. His team, coming off a bye with something to play for, seemed completely unmotivated.

With their season steadily fading away, I was expecting a dejected locker room afterwards.

It didn't happen.

Instead, there was a casualness inside. No one seemed overly upset. No blank stares. No long faces.

They weren't happy or celebrating by any means. It was more like a realization that no matter how positive they remain, this season isn't going to get any better. Despite the locker room being much better, they just aren't a good enough team.

"I think the intent was right, I think guys were ready to play. We just got completely out-executed, out-played and that's on us," Zach Strief said after the game.

That's what a leader is supposed to say after his team just got embarrassed. But the truth is, the Saints current predicament runs so much deeper than simple execution. And like Sean Payton said, 'they're a lot of dirty hands involved.'

The biggest being his own.

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