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In-game blog: Jags at Saints

Nov 4 2007 10:05AM
Hi and welcome to the press box inside the Louisiana Superdome. I remember coming here early in my career when I was a young, wide-eyed reporter. The Superdome was new then and I was in awe of it. As I walked into this building this morning, I had an uneasy feeling. I'll never forget the picture of thousands of frightened people filing into this building as they sought shelter from Hurricane Katrina.

Nov 4 2007 10:12AM
The Superdome underwent $100 million in renovations. It's a handsome building, again, with its trademark multi-colored seats. The building is more than 30 years old but it remains a Super Bowl-caliber facility. I'm happy for New Orleans and the Saints that recovery is happening. In the downtown area, it is distinct.

Nov 4 2007 10:47AM
Richard Collier and Justin Durant are back in Jacksonville. Collier apparently was involved in a DUI arrest in the wee hours of Saturday morning and has been suspended by the team for today's game. Durant was arrested in the wee hours of Saturday morning and charged with resisting arrest without violence. Durant was not put on the Reserve/Suspended list but was forbidden from making the trip to New Orleans and, obviously, will be inactive for today's game.

Nov 4 2007 10:51AM
The arrests are troubling, especially at a time when the team is waiting for a league ruling on what is thought to have been a failed test for performance-enhancing drugs by Marcus Stroud. I completely understand and appreciate fan concern for these matters and I promise that Jack Del Rio will be asked to comment on them.

Nov 4 2007 10:55AM
One more thing on this matter: I am not a police blotter reporter, nor do I have access to that kind of information gathering, as a sportswriter at a newspaper does. Any information I gather on law enforcement matters will be second-hand.

Nov 4 2007 11:49AM
Jaguars inactives: David Garrard, Josh Scobee, LaBrandon Toefield, Brian Williams, Justin Durant, Derek Landri, Uche Nwaneri, Greg Estandia, who has a foot injury.

Nov 4 2007 11:51AM
Maurice Williams will start at left tackle in place of Khalif Barnes. More on that later.

Nov 4 2007 11:54AM
Saints inactives: Robert Meachem, Jay Bellamy, Fred Thomas, Jeff Faine, Scott Shanle, Andy Alleman, Brian Young, Ronnie Ghent.

Nov 4 2007 12:29PM
The music has started. It is so loud and so awful that I am going down to the radio booth and put on a headset to cover my ears. You are certainly welcome to join us for "Jaguars This Week Extra." I'll be back just before kickoffs. I hate domes.

Nov 4 2007 1:01PM
I'm back for the coin toss. Fred Taylor is out there. He has a "C" on his jersey; the only one. This is Fred's day. I'm proud to be here for it.

Nov 4 2007 1:02PM
I/ve been doing this for 36 years and today will mark only the second time I've covered a 10,000-yard rusher. That's how special this; two in 36 years. Do it, Fred, do it.

Nov 4 2007 1:03PM
The Saints won the toss and will receive. Enjoy the game, everyone.

Nov 4 2007 1:05PM
Ivan "Don't Call Me Isaac" Smolko is on the kickoff team. The Saints return the kick to their 32.

Nov 4 2007 1:07PM
Drew Brees to Marques Colston for 20 yards and a first down at the Jaguars 45.

Nov 4 2007 1:07PM
Reggie Bush runs for 12 and a first down. I don't like what I'm seeing. the Jags look slow.

Nov 4 2007 1:09PM
Samnmy Knight saved the day. Reggie Nelson was toast; beaten deep by Lance Moore. Knight flashed across the field and knocked the ball away in the end zone.

Nov 4 2007 1:10PM
Knight does it again. He broke up a third-down pass for Colston. Olindo Mare is good from 46 yards. The Saints looked very sharp in that opening drive. They have high energy. So does this building.

Nov 4 2007 1:11PM
Brees' throw for Moore would've been perfect; a certain touchdown. Knight made a fantastic play.

Nov 4 2007 1:13PM
Onside kick; Saints got it. It was perfectly executed. The Jags better wake up right now because the Saints mean business. They're here to play.

Nov 4 2007 1:14PM
Missed tackles everywhere on a short pass, long run by David Patten. First down at the Jaguars 26. Hold on to your hats.

Nov 4 2007 1:15PM
The Saints are four and five-wide on nearly every down. They are running with a wide-open throttle.

Nov 4 2007 1:17PM
Reggie Bush blows up the middle to the six; late hit by the Jaguars. They need a time out right now. They are not matching the Saints' energy.

Nov 4 2007 1:18PM
Time out by the Saints. They are first and goal at the three. The Jaguars need someone to take leadership in that huddle. They need a shot of adrenalin.

Nov 4 2007 1:21PM
Touchdown! Bush up the middle. What is wrong with the middle of the Jaguars defense?

Nov 4 2007 1:25PM
Fred, no gain. This crowd is into it big time. They are howling.

Nov 4 2007 1:27PM
Touchdown! Eighty yards from Quinn Gray to Reggie Williams. He was being covered man to man and the cornerback seemed to stop to find the ball. Gray hit him right in stride. That is so big. It stops the bleeding.

Nov 4 2007 1:28PM
That's the second-longest touchdown pass in Jaguars history. It came on third-and-10. The Saints were in a pressure defense and the Jaguars blocked it.

Nov 4 2007 1:33PM
Three and out. The Saints punt goes out of bounds at the Jaguars 10.

Nov 4 2007 1:36PM
Taylor for 15. He needs 52.

Nov 4 2007 1:37PM
Taylor gains five. He needs 47.

Nov 4 2007 1:38PM
Gray to Maurice Jones-Drew and then a facemask, the big kind. The ball is at the Saints 33. The Jaguars are responding beautifully witht their offense.

Nov 4 2007 1:40PM
Beautiful throw to John Broussard for a first down at the Saints 19. Chris Naeole is down. It looks bad.

Nov 4 2007 1:41PM
Naeole is going off; can't put any weight on his left foot. Dennis Norman takes his place. By the way, Broussard appears to be playing ahead of Matt Jones, who has yet to play a down.

Nov 4 2007 1:42PM
Five-wide and Gray throws to Taylor for four; second and six at the 15.

Nov 4 2007 1:44PM
Naeole is going off on a cart. It's a left knee sprain.

Nov 4 2007 1:45PM
Graya throws incomplete on third down. John Carney is on. He's good from 30.

Nov 4 2007 1:46PM
It's 10-10 and we're still in the first quarter. This one is going to be about offense.

Nov 4 2007 1:47PM
The secondary is playing much better. The receivers were all covered on that first-down play.

Nov 4 2007 1:48PM
Brees to Colston for 20 and a first down. Colston is impressive. He's the perfect example of wide receivers are a dime a dozen.

Nov 4 2007 1:49PM
That's terrible. Billy Miller catches a pass from Brees and plows through the defense for 57 yards to the two-yard line. He beat Nelson and then just about everybody missed a tackle.

Nov 4 2007 1:50PM
Touchdown! Swing pass from Brees to Bush. He walked in.

Nov 4 2007 1:52PM
Touchdown! Jones-Drew goes 100 yards on the kickoff. That's the longest KO return in team history. He's the first Jaguar to return a kickoff for a touchdown twice in his career.

Nov 4 2007 1:54PM
I think the big loser is going to be the Jaguars defense. These quick turn-arounds are going to give the Saints a lot of possession time and that could translate into a lot of yardage. The Saints currently have a four-minute TOP advantage.

Nov 4 2007 1:56PM
The Saints just threw their 17th pass of the game.

Nov 4 2007 1:58PM
Stroud went offside and Brees had a free play. He threw for 13 yards and a first down.

Nov 4 2007 1:58PM
Bush lowered his head and bulled for 10 yards. The Jaguars defense looks whipped.

Nov 4 2007 1:59PM
Brees to Colston for a first down at the Jaguars 33. It's a 21-yard gain.

Nov 4 2007 2:00PM
They're going after Nelson. They're going right for him.

Nov 4 2007 2:01PM
Brees to Eric Johnson for 11. First down at the 21. It's hang on time.

Nov 4 2007 2:02PM
Brees is sacked by Paul Spicer and Brees fumbles. The Jaguars recover at the 31. That's the kind of hold-on I mean. You have to do whatever you can to hold on.

Nov 4 2007 2:04PM
The Saints already have 237 net yards. Gray to Marcedes Lewis for a first down at the 49.

Nov 4 2007 2:05PM
Looking at the replay, Brees just dropped the ball. He hit it against his leg.

Nov 4 2007 2:07PM
Gray is down. A rusher got him low. Will Smith went real low from behind. That was cheap. No question.

Nov 4 2007 2:08PM
It looks even worse on replay.

Nov 4 2007 2:09PM
That's two quarterback on two low hits in the last three weeks. That needs to be addressed.

Nov 4 2007 2:11PM
Bad punt by Adam Podlesh. It's dead at the Saints 25. That's a 25 net. Yuk!

Nov 4 2007 2:11PM
If I'm Brees, I'm gonna stay light on a feet.

Nov 4 2007 2:15PM
Gray had his left ankle re-taped. The Saints have it out to their 42.

Nov 4 2007 2:16PM
The Saints are now attacking the flats with short passes. They are up tempo. Brees get another free play and throws to Colston for a first down at the Jaguars 39. Stroud was offside again.

Nov 4 2007 2:16PM
Without Deuce McAllister, the Saints have no true running game. It's all pass all the time.

Nov 4 2007 2:18PM
Brees to Devry Henderson to the 21 for 15. Brees is on his game. I don't remember him having as strong an arm as he's showing today. The next pass is to Colston to the eight.

Nov 4 2007 2:18PM
Brees to Moore for a touchdown. It appears Moore beat Knight. The Jaguars defense has to do something to slow the Saints down. It's a track meet.

Nov 4 2007 2:20PM
The Jaguars need to change the tempo of this game. They need to run the ball; get Fred his 10,000 yards and slow this down. They've allowed themselves to get lured into an up-tempo game. I think Gray is going to return.

Nov 4 2007 2:21PM
Colston has already caught seven passes for 103 yards. The stats are ugly.

Nov 4 2007 2:22PM
Jones-Drew runs for 11. That's what I'm talking about.

Nov 4 2007 2:23PM
Taylor plus four. He needs 43.

Nov 4 2007 2:24PM
Fred came up off the ground angry. He's going off the field to cool down. Third and six.

Nov 4 2007 2:25PM
Gray incomplete. He threw too late. Podlesh's punt is low and short. Scott Starks on great kick coverage. The ball is at the Saints 27.

Nov 4 2007 2:28PM
Mike Smith is going to max coverage. He had eight in coverage on the last down. Brees is getting time to throw.

Nov 4 2007 2:30PM
The Jaguars get a stop on third down. Brees left the pocket and no one was open. He should've stayed there. Jack Del Rio is challenging the play. Brees under-handed a pass. I'm not sure what the challenge is.

Nov 4 2007 2:32PM
Referee Gerry Austin says it's not reviewable. The Jaguars have it at their 20 after the punt.

Nov 4 2007 2:33PM
Gray's getting abused by Will Smith. Holding is accepted. The ball is at the 10.

Nov 4 2007 2:34PM
Jones-Drew is running well. He gains five. The Jags need to get to halftime down seven and then re-commit to the run. The Saints call time out at 2:18.

Nov 4 2007 2:35PM
These fans are great. They really love this team. Katrina intensified that love.

Nov 4 2007 2:37PM
Tickets distributed, 70,009. That's a lot of tickets for this market. I see some empty seats, but not many. The Saints are New Orleans.

Nov 4 2007 2:40PM
Bush fumbled the punt but the Saints recover at their 35. Here we go. High tempo, baby.

Nov 4 2007 2:41PM
Brees to David Patten to the Jaguars 29. He beat Aaron Glenn and evaded Nelson.

Nov 4 2007 2:43PM
Brees fumbles and the Jags recover. He lost his grip. That's going to be reviewed. There's the buzzer.

Nov 4 2007 2:43PM
I'll be surprised if that call isn't reversed. It's a clear case of the tuck rule, in my opinion.

Nov 4 2007 2:44PM
Wait a minute. Reggie Hayward hit his arm. I just saw it on replay. That could change everything.

Nov 4 2007 2:46PM
The call is reversed. I can't hear but I think the ruling is that Brees' arm was coming forward. The Saints have it at the Jags 34; third and 10.

Nov 4 2007 2:48PM
Mare is on for a 43-yard field goal attempt. It's wide to the right. Mare's troubles continue. He's being booed.

Nov 4 2007 2:49PM
Gray is immediately intercepted at the Saints 24. Here comes Brees and the Saints offense. Big mistake. The Jags have to slow this game down.

Nov 4 2007 2:50PM
Brees to Colston. He ran through three guys. The Jaguars are gassed.

Nov 4 2007 2:52PM
Here comes Mare. It'll be from 52. It's wide to the right. More boos.

Nov 4 2007 2:53PM
That's the half. The Jaguars are fortunate to be trailing by only seven points. They've allowed 399 yards. They need to make some serious adjustments at halftime.

Nov 4 2007 3:07PM
Brees threw for 326 yards in the first half. I've never seen anything like that.

Nov 4 2007 3:07PM
I'm sorry, he threw for 346, a Saints record for a half.

Nov 4 2007 3:09PM
The only good thing about the end around is you might get a hit out of bounds. Ditch that play.

Nov 4 2007 3:10PM
Gray to Reggie Williams for a first down. There's a flag after the play was over. Williams is being called for a personal foul, taunting. Come on! The ball goes back to the Jaguars 39.

Nov 4 2007 3:11PM
Gray to Lewis for a first down at the Saints 40. Gray is throwing well but I'm surprised by the up-tempo offense.

Nov 4 2007 3:12PM
Matt Jones was one-on-one with the Saints' smallish corner, Jason David. Big mismatch. Holding Vince Manuwai. They need to come back to that play.

Nov 4 2007 3:14PM
Reggie Williams is over 100 yards receiving. That's the Jags' first 100-yard receiver this season.

Nov 4 2007 3:16PM
Touchdown! Mike McKenzie just intercepted a pass and went 75 yards for a touchdown. Gray was attempting to throw to Ernest Wilford on fourth-and-four from the Saints 34. McKenzie stepped in front. Gray telegraphed the throw.

Nov 4 2007 3:17PM
Khalif Barnes was in the game at left tackle in that possession.

Nov 4 2007 3:24PM
Three and out. Podlesh punts 39 yards to the Saints 33. Directional punting is nice but it sure gives away a lot of yardage.

Nov 4 2007 3:27PM
Bush has impressed me. When he's used the right way, and the Saints use him the right way, he's a weapon. The Saints are at the Jaguars 30.

Nov 4 2007 3:28PM
This has a bad look right now. Go ahead, get it out of your system, guys.

Nov 4 2007 3:30PM
Brees to Colston; out of bounds at the three. Gain of 18. Brees now has 394 yards passing. Peyton Manning threw for 440 against the Jags. Brees is closing on that record.

Nov 4 2007 3:31PM
Touchdown! Brees to Patten. He beat Glenn.

Nov 4 2007 3:33PM
The situation here in New Orleans is developing into a heckuva story. The town and the team are rising together and the Saints are the symbol of New Orleans' recovery. I've covered a lot of games here and I don't recall the Saints ever having been this beloved.

Nov 4 2007 3:35PM
I don't know what it was that got the Saints so fired up about this game, but this is, by far, the most intense effort by a Jaguars opponent I have witnessed this season.

Nov 4 2007 3:37PM
Taylor gains five. He needs 32. Get it for him.

Nov 4 2007 3:38PM
Fred gets 13 and a first down. He needs 19. That's the end of the third quarter.

Nov 4 2007 3:44PM
The Saints have it back at their 27. Podlesh hit a good punt there. The Saints have 466 total yards; 533 is the record, by the Colts in the same game Manning threw for 440.

Nov 4 2007 3:45PM
Stroud is limping off.

Nov 4 2007 3:47PM
The Titans have a big lead over the Panthers. Tomorrow night's Ravens-Steelers game is big for the Jaguars. They need a Steelers win.

Nov 4 2007 3:52PM
Stroud has a sprained left ankle.

Nov 4 2007 3:53PM
Reggie Williams has played well today. I think there's still reason to believe he can be a consistently productive receiver on this team.

Nov 4 2007 3:53PM
Broussard catches the long ball. That's why he's in the game. He pulled away from the defender to make the catch. It was good for 56 yards.

Nov 4 2007 3:55PM
Touchdown! Gray to Northcutt for 15 yards. With 9:32 to play, the Jags are back in it. They have to get a stop right now.

Nov 4 2007 3:56PM
Broussard would seem to have moved ahead of Matt Jones in the pecking order at wide receiver, and that play would be the reason. You have to have a deep threat. Broussard is this team's deep threat. By the way, he beat double coverage.

Nov 4 2007 3:58PM
OK, defense, do your stuff.

Nov 4 2007 3:58PM
Brees to Colston. What a great passing attack the Saints have.

Nov 4 2007 3:59PM
First down; Bush runs up the middle for it. That's bad.

Nov 4 2007 4:00PM
Stroud is in the game. He's making a statement about his dedication. Good for him.

Nov 4 2007 4:02PM
I don't know what Bush was trying to do. He tried to hurdle Rashean Mathis and all he accomplished was to fall on his butt.

Nov 4 2007 4:03PM
Third and four; Brees swings it to Bush for a first down. That's probably going to do it. The Jags needed a stop right there.

Nov 4 2007 4:03PM
The Saints are over 500 yards.

Nov 4 2007 4:05PM
Brees to Miller for 14. They're still throwing. Brees needs 10 passing yards to tie Manning. They really shouldn't throw again.

Nov 4 2007 4:06PM
So what do they do? They go empty. False start. Let's see what they do now.

Nov 4 2007 4:08PM
He throws it on third down and sets a Jaguars opponents record for yards passing with 445 yards. It's fourth and two. Are they going for it?

Nov 4 2007 4:09PM
Mare is good from 34. I'm going to stay because of the Fred factor.

Nov 4 2007 4:11PM
Taylor gets six. He needs 13.

Nov 4 2007 4:13PM
We're at the two-minute warning. Come on, Jack, give it to Fred. I really think this team needs something positive to take home from New Orleans.

Nov 4 2007 4:15PM
Fred is not in the game. I guess this is going to wait until next Sunday in Nashville.

Nov 4 2007 4:20PM
Alley oop in the end zone for Matt Jones is intecepted. Bye.

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