After Further Review: Handing out Saints' first quarter awards

After Further Review: Handing out Saints' first quarter awards

NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - At 1-3, the Saints are set to embark on their second quarter of their season. Even during seasons with slow starts, this is usually the time where they make their most improvement. With that in mind, here is the best and worst of the first four games of the season.

Offensive MVP

Drew Brees

Brees is still as consistent as ever. He was second in the league in passing yards and touchdowns heading into the bye week. Brees is still the best player on the team by a long shot, and if they are able to make some kind of a run this season, his greatness will be a major part of it.

Defensive MVP

Craig Robertson

Whether it's at weakside or middle, Robertson has been the most consistent Saints linebacker and defender through the first quarter of the season. He leads the team in tackles and tackles for loss.

Honorable Mention: Nick Fairley

Special Teams MVP 

Thomas Morstead

The Saints' special teams have been catastrophic in each of their three losses, but Morstead has remained as steady as ever. He's second in the NFL with a 51.1 yard average.

Most impactful Newcomer

Craig Robertson

See above and add in the fact that he has been the most productive player of the Saints' free agent class.

Honorable Mentions: Nick Fairley, John Kuhn.

Rookie of the Quarter

Michael Thomas

As we saw on his game-winning touchdown reception against the Chargers, Thomas has a more diverse route tree than solely the slants the Saints were allowing him to run in the first three games. Thomas has the full trust of Drew Brees, thus it's time to let him loose. He currently leads the team in receptions and should see more targets as the year goes on.

Honorable Mention: Vonn Bell

Biggest Disappointment:

Stephone Anthony

Anthony was my top-rated rookie a season ago but can now barely see the field. The move to strongside has not worked, and through four games Anthony has become irrelevant.  Perhaps it's just a product of a failed experiment and not regression. Regardless, to have a former first round pick who led the team in tackles in 2015 to be a complete non-factor is not a good look.

Who we'd like to see more of:

Daniel Lasco

As I observe Lasco's playing style, I'm starting to see some Pierre Thomas to his game. He is patient, breaks tackles and is a solid receiver out of the backfield. The Saints have not had an adequate screen back, a huge part of their offense during their run, since Thomas left. Lasco may be the player that can bring it back.

Honorable Mention: Vonn Bell, Erik Harris, Nate Stupar

Realistic Outlook:

History has shown that the Saints always battle back after slow starts. They're just never able to completely dig themselves out of their hole enough to make any kind of real run. That will likely occur again this season. The return of players like Terron Armstead, Dannell Ellerbe, Delvin Breaux and Sheldon Rankins will help. But, realistically, the Saints are likely destined for anywhere between six and eight wins this season.

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