4 Lions that can have the most success against the Saints

Yardbarker

After a little mini bye week, Detroit Lions football is back. The Lions  will head to the big easy this Sunday to eat some shrimp gumbo and play the Saints. 

That means it’s time to dive deep into the stats and analytics to find the four Lions that can have the biggest days. Here’s what I came up with. Let’s start in the backfield on offense. 

David Montgomery

When you look at the season as whole, the Saints haven’t been absolutely terrible against run. They’ve allowed the 12th most rushing yards in the NFL. That’s not great, but it’s not the worst either. Where the problem comes in is in the last three games, they’ve allowed 169.7 rushing yards per game. Only the Cardinals have had a worse time stopping the run. They allowed..

  • 228 yards to the Falcons
  • 125 to the Vikings 
  • 156 to the Bears

The Lions are all about running the ball. I could have gone with either Montgomery or Jahmyr Gibbs here. I went with Montgomery because of his red zone prowess. He’s fourth in the NFL in red zone rushing. He’s sixth in red zone rushing touchdowns. 

Amon-Ra St. Brown

There’s no way around it. This Saints defense is pretty good against the pass. They have a league high 72 passes defensed and have the second most interceptions. They even allow the sixth fewest yards after the catch. They’re a good group for sure. 

The only problem with all of that is I wonder about the competition they’ve faced. Here’s each of their opponents top receiver along with where they rank in receiving yardage and their total receiving yards this year. 

Player Receiving Yards this season Rank

DeAndre Hopkins

669

24th

Adam Thielen

728

22nd

Jayden Reed

497

50th

Mike Evans

850

11th

Demario Douglas

410

76th

Nico Collins

800

14th

Christian Kirk

761

19th

Michael Pittman Jr. 

784

16th

D.J. Moore

1,003

5th

Jordan Addison 

686

28th

Drake London 

565

40th

Amon-Ra St. Brown

993

6th

As you can see, the Saints haven’t exactly been facing Jerry Rice every week. attached to a lot of those receivers are bad quarterbacks. The Saints haven’t really played a solid Pro Bowl level guy outside of Trevor Lawrence and C.J. Stroud. They lost both of those games by the way. 

This will be a test for sure because the stat line tells you it will, but St. Brown really is the best receiver this team has faced all year. 

Jared Goff

Goff is not on here because I expect him to throw 500 yards and five touchdowns in this game. It would be nice if he did, but that’s not how the Lions offense typically likes to party. Goff is here becasue he should have something he really needs to succeed against the Saints, time. 

The Saints defensive front is having a lot of problems this season. I mentioned earlier that Cam Jordan could be out for this game. That presents an issue because he’s their best pass rusher. The other issue is that the Saints have just 18 sacks this year. Only one team has fewer and that’s the Bears. They’re also 28th in pressures and 19th in hurries. 

This should give Goff time to throw. He did not have that against Packers and it showed. 

Donovan Peoples-Jones

Judging by his picture you’d think I was writing an article for J. Jonah Jameson over at the Daily Bugle. 

Here’s the thing. I want to change this series up a bit and add a reach in each installment. A player that I think could have a good day that maybe has a better chance of not having a good day. 

This week I’m going with Donovan Peoples-Jones. Now, I don’t think that Peoples-Jones has a monster day or anything like that. My prediction is simple. He will score his first touchdown as a Lion in this game. 

The reason being is that of the 19 red zone touchdowns the Saints have allowed this year, 12 of them have come through the air. Peoples-Jones is not a separator. He’s not going to burn anyone down the field. What he is good at is contested catches in the red zone. I think he gets one in the end zone on Sunday. We’ll come back on Monday and see if I’m right. 

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