Saints Head Coach Dennis Allen


OCTOBER 8, 2023


DA: Look, obviously pleased with the win. I think it’s probably as complete a game as we’ve played around here in a while. I thought all three phases of the game came in and did their job and did what we needed to do to win the game. I’m pleased with the win and now we start to turn our attention to next week at Houston.


Q: What are some of the things offensively that kind of stood out?

DA: I think we were able to score points in the red zone. I think that was probably the number one thing. I thought we ran the ball pretty well in the game. So I thought – overall I thought up front, overall, thought we did some good things, and I thought we did a good job of kind of being able to control the line of scrimmage a little bit.


Q: You mentioned last week that offensively everything they did could have been a little bit better, did you feel they answered that challenge?

DA: Yeah, look, the challenge really was for everybody to be better. This wasn’t an offense, defense, kicking game deal, this was the New Orleans Saints need to be better. We had to coach better. We had to play better. And I thought everybody, coaches, players, everybody alike, answered the challenge this week.


Q: Did you put an emphasis on being more aggressive early on to set the tone, we’re going to go down the field and look different than we did last week?

DA: Yeah, look, I think we wanted to come into the game and be able to run the ball and throw the ball effectively. Really thought we had some opportunities that we could have taken advantage of that we didn’t take advantage of. There’s still a lot of things we have to clean up. We obviously wanted to be aggressive. We wanted to be able to move the ball and score some points. Ultimately we were able to do that.


Q: What was the atmosphere like in the facility this week?

DA: I thought it was great. I thought our guys knew what we needed to do. I think they understood that the previous performance wasn’t good enough. And we knew we had a better team than what we put out there. And I think today we came out and answered the bell.


Q: What did you think of the defense’s performance today? 

DA: Defensively, I thought we played well. I think third-down defense was really good. I think our ability to be able to get off the field on third down helped us. And then our ability on offense to be able to run the ball, kind of maintain time and possession. I think that got out of whack a little bit in our favor in the game. So I think that was a huge part of the game. Again, I thought our guys did a pretty good job up front being able to stop the run and also being able to kind of get after the quarterback a little bit.


Q: Talk about the spark from Tyrann Mathieu with that pick-six.

DA: I think that’s huge. Being able to take the ball away early in the game like that and create a little momentum on your side, I think our whole team kind of fed off of that and certainly great to see. It’s been a while since I can remember that we scored on defense. And so that was a little bit of an emphasis this week to take the ball away and potentially score on defense.


Q: I know Pete Carmichael was pretty adamant about taking on the blame with the offensive struggles. On Friday, he said, “100 percent my fault; I’ve got to get better.” What kind of conversations did you and him have? Not asking for details, but about him wanting to come into this game, be different, get a different outcome, not just on the scoreboard?

DA: Listen, we talk every week, and if you’re having struggles in an area – there’s very few times you can point in one individual direction and say, “that’s the issue.” So the challenge this week was for everybody, players and coaches, to show up. And I thought our guys answered the bell and showed up today.


Q: Obviously can get lost in a 34-0 game, but Blake Grupe with the two long kicks, what’s your confidence level in him right now?

DA: I think it’s extremely high. I think he’s kicked the ball exceptionally well for us. I’ve had zero reservations about having him attempt a long field goal. It was great to see him do that.


Q: Alvin Kamara just walked into the room and he’s now the all-time career Saints touchdown leader… 

DA: It’s pretty good, huh? Yeah.


Q: Can you speak about the overall nature of him?

DA: Look, he’s been outstanding for our football team, both in terms of his production on the field and in terms of his leadership in the locker room. I think it’s been awesome. There’s some plays in the game today that probably don’t stand out to the naked eye. And yet you just watch his ability to make guys miss and create plays is pretty awesome. I thought he ran the ball exceptionally hard today. We’ve been working to get that 73rd touchdown. It’s been a while for us to finally get it. So it was good for that to happen.


Q: This is the largest home loss, shutout loss in Patriots franchise history. Could you have seen anything like this coming this week?

DA: Look, our deal this week was just focus on us, focus on what we have to do to be better and then go out and execute our jobs on Sunday in the game. I thought everybody as an organization did a good job of doing that.


Q: Is this what you thought this offense was capable of?

DA: This is what I want our team to look like. And now the challenge is, can you replicate that week in and week out in a tough league that we play in. So I thought we had a great week of practice. I thought our preparation was awesome. I thought our focus was awesome, and I think the results showed.


Q: Is the buy-in level – what are the elements from this game specifically, the two or three things that you wanted to look at?

DA: I think scoring a lot of points and not giving up a lot. I mean, look, I thought we did a good job being efficient offensively. We were able to run the football. We took the ball away, which created some good field position. We played smart football. We still have to eliminate some of the penalties, but overall I thought it was a well-played game.


Q: You emphasized tackling and pass rush in previous games. How do you feel on the progress that you saw today?

DA: I thought it was better. I thought it was better. Obviously I’m going to go back and look at the tape. I’m sure there’s going to be some things that I won’t be happy about. But overall, I thought overall as a whole team I thought it was better.


Q: You said last week that Derek Carr had to deal with some shoulder soreness toward the end of the game. But this game it seemed like he was still throwing deep, even towards the end. How did he hold up?

DA: I haven’t talked to the trainers yet. But I’m assuming he’s okay.


Q: That seems like a good thing though if you didn’t even have to talk to him about it.  

DA: I didn’t see anything in the game. It’s all good.


Q: We saw Chris Olave getting in some work before the game. Was he dealing with something today?

DA: He had a little bit of a toe prior to the game but made it through fine. We’ll see where he’s at. But I thought he looked good.



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