NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - It has become a holiday season tradition for the Saints and their fans in recent years: Christmas is getting here way too fast, and the off-season can't get here fast enough.
Scoring a win over a quality opponent was rare before December. Now scoring at all, besides the excitement of watching Wil Lutz connect on a 22-yard field goal, is too much to ask Santa for. In losses to Detroit and Tampa, the Saints' offensive output has consisted of one touchdown and five field goals. Oh - and one safety, which yesterday was our radio broadcast play of the game. There wasn't even an offensive highlight that bore consideration because there were no offensive highlights. Not like last week against Detroit when a one-yard plunge by fullback John Kuhn was a slamdunk for the honor.
Just as we have apparently exorcised the ghosts of Christmases and defensive coordinators past, like Rob Ryan, there's an apparition on the saints' sideline of Carl Smith becoming more lifelike weekly as the Saints' offense becomes more like weakly.
Yesterday's loss shouldn't have been a surprise. You play a team on a roll like Tampa that's in relatively good health with the playoffs as their motivation and you do so without your best offensive lineman, wide receiver, linebacker, and defensive back, and that's the result. And maybe the near-total absence of offense for a second straight game shouldn't have been a surprise either, though I hate to believe that.
Christmas is all about believing. And in this holiday season, I believe it's a wonderful life. It's just the football season - like last year's - and like last year's fruitcake, that stinks again.