It hasn’t been the type of start to the 2020 season that the New Orleans Saints hoped to have. New Orleans has limped through the first three weeks with many questions about their Super Bowl viability coming into question. With that in mind, Drew Brees and the Saints are about to get the shot in the arm that they need.
Saints struggle to begin the 2020 season
Like much of the last several years, the Saints held high aspirations toward competing for the Super Bowl heading into the 2020 season.
The first three weeks of the campaign haven’t ventured in a promising route as they have dropped two out of their first three games. It has shifted the conversation over to star quarterback Drew Brees‘ performance, especially his struggles throwing the ball down the field.
Meanwhile, their defense has had plenty of issues, giving up 31.3 points per contest, which is tied for fifth-most in the league. Although it’s quite early in the season, these problems have only further clouded the franchise’s Super Bowl hopes against the other top NFC teams in the league.
The Saints have remained internally confident in their ability to turn things around, but it has brought forth outside doubt toward the franchise. That said, New Orleans may be getting a significant boost they need to get back on track toward a deep playoff run.
Michael Thomas returns to the practice field
Following the Week 1 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the biggest storyline around Saints concerned the health of star wide receiver Michael Thomas.
The Ohio State product suffered a mild high ankle sprain that led to him being examined by renowned surgeon Dr. Robert Anderson ahead of Week 3 action against the Green Bay Packers. Thomas has now made some notable progress in his recovery from his ankle injury as he practiced on Wednesday, according to Amie Just of NOLA.com.
It doesn’t exactly signify that he will return for the Week 4 matchup against the Detroit Lions, but it’s a definite step in the right direction. Thomas has been the Saints’ guiding factor offensively as he’s their most explosive threat. He’s coming off a record-breaking campaign where he had a league-record 149 catches for 1,725 receiving yards and nine touchdowns.
Although many don’t value the impact of a wide receiver in an offense’s success, Thomas’ presence in the passing game has given the Saints an extremely reliable offensive force that guides them forward. There isn’t any clarity when he will return, but the fact that he’s practicing is a promising sign of things to come.
Saints focused on rebounding in Week 4 against the Lions
There has been plenty of focus on Drew Brees’ performance to begin the 2020 season, but the Saints’ defensive struggles are most concerning.
New Orleans has had among the better units in the league over the last few years. It has seen them have much difficulty defending to begin the year allowing north of 30 points twice. The Lions are coming off their first win of the season, but it’s a prime opportunity for the Saints to put forth a bounce-back outing.
Brees has had his issues throwing the ball, but he will face a struggling Detroit defense that is allowing 30.3 points per game through the first three weeks. It could see a big day for their running game as the Lions are third-worst in allowing 172.3 rushing yards per contest. The table is set for New Orleans to get back in the win column to move a step closer toward making a push toward the playoffs.