From a player’s point of view, they’re always right, and the refs are always wrong.
Today, however, the Saints seemed to benefit from the most potential game-changing calls. None of them were stranger than Zach Miller’s touchdown that was taken off the board after he dislocated his knee on the play.
“I thought it was a touchdown,” says Saints safety Kenny Vaccaro. “I was ready to go back out there and defend a field goal and not let them score another point.”
“I thought that there were three or four today that could go either way,” says head coach Sean Payton. “Honestly, I felt like we had good angles, and I thought it was 50-50.”
And while that play to Miller stands out, there were several other calls or plays that helped decide the Saints fate that just as easily could have worked against them.
Alvin Kamara’s near fumble early in the second quarter would have given the Bears great field position. Instead, the call was overturned, and the Saints were able to keep Chicago at bay.
“I’m just grateful that it did go my way,” says Kamara. “I’ve still got to hold onto it. But when you’re winning, I guess like you said, sometimes things go your way. That just happened to go our way.”
That play certainly did, along with Wil Lutz’s field goal off the left upright but still good, Thomas Morstead’s punt bouncing the right way to stay inside the five yard line and Drew Brees arm moving forward, on the first play of the fourth quarter, just enough to be ruled incomplete and not a fumble.
Brees, who became just the third quarterback in NFL history with 6,000 completions, says this good fortune is long overdue.
“We’ve been on the flip side of these too many times,” says Brees. “So maybe it’s coming around to benefit us a little bit.”
“You’re hoping you get the breaks you need,” adds coach Payton. “We got a few. We didn’t get a few. That’s probably the way most of the games shape up.”
“Those all even out in the end, and we’re still behind in the numbers that have gone against us,” says Brees. “So we need some more of these to catch up to even it out in our favor.”
The Saints would probably be the first to admit, though, that at some point, those lucky breaks may become unlucky and work against them. Especially on offense, they have some things to clean up before face tougher opponents later in the schedule.
But for now, no one’s complaining about some good luck. When we look back on this game weeks from now, we probably won’t be talking about all of the breaks the Saints had. All that matters now and going forward is that it’s a fifth-straight win for the black and gold, and it gets them that much closer to their playoff goals.
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