September 20, 2020

New Orleans Saints snap counts analysis from Week 1 vs. Buccaneers

Photo: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

  • DE Cameron Jordan, 60/70 (86%)
  • DT Sheldon Rankins, 43/70 (61%)
  • DT David Onyemata, 40/70 (57%)
  • DE Trey Hendrickson, 39/70 (56%)
  • DE Carl Granderson, 23/70 (33%)
  • DT Malcolm Roach, 23/70 (33%)
  • DL Margus Hunt, 21/70 (30%)
  • NT Malcom Brown, 20/70 (29%)

Jordan’s snaps count is right in line with what he saw last year (averaging 82% per game), but the real story is Rankins returning to form. He played often, starting in the middle of the line next to Onyemata, and looked much more like his old self on several disruptive pass rushes. If Rankins is close to playing at his best again, he can elevate this entire defense.

Meanwhile, the Saints backups did a great job filling in for Marcus Davenport out on the edge. Hendrickson was all over Tom Brady, and Granderson had a few nice moments. Davenport returning from an elbow injury will be a huge upgrade, sure, but props to the reserves for stepping up when called upon.

Also: Roach, an undrafted rookie out of Texas, may have taken Shy Tuttle’s spot in the active roster. Tuttle did miss some time in training camp with an injury, so the Saints might just be waiting for him to get back up to speed in practice. But Roach crashed down on several plays and was impressive against the Bucs in his NFL debut. Keeping him on the bench won’t be easy.

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