|2007 New Orleans Saints season|
|Head coach||Sean Payton|
|General manager||Mickey Loomis|
|Home field||Louisiana Superdome|
|Division place||3rd NFC South|
|Playoff finish||Did not qualify|
The 2007 season was the New Orleans Saints' 41st season in the National Football League, their 32nd playing home games at the Louisiana Superdome and their second under head coach Sean Payton. The team tried to improve upon its 10–6 record in 2006 and its third division title—the Saints' first in the NFC South. Their other two division titles were in the NFC West, prior to the league's 2002 realignment. After opening up the pre-season in the Hall of Fame Game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on August 5, 2007, the Saints ended with a 3–2 pre-season record. The Saints opened the regular season with a nationally televised game against the defending Super Bowl champion Indianapolis Colts, but ultimately had a disappointing season, finishing 2007 with a 7–9 record and were officially eliminated from postseason contention for the first time since 2005. The Saints also had no player make the Pro Bowl for the first time since their 1–15 1980 season.
|2007 New Orleans Saints draft|
|1||27||Robert Meachem||Wide receiver||Tennessee|
|3||66||Usama Young||Safety||Kent State|
|4||107||Antonio Pittman||Running back||Ohio State|
|4||125||Jermon Bushrod||Offensive tackle||Towson|
Special teams coaches
Strength and conditioning
|HOF||August 5||vs. Pittsburgh Steelers||L 7–20||0–1||Fawcett Stadium (Canton, Ohio)||Recap|
|1||August 10||Buffalo Bills||L 10–13||0–2||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|2||August 18||Cincinnati Bengals||W 27–19||1–2||Paul Brown Stadium||Recap|
|3||August 23||at Kansas City Chiefs||W 30–7||2–2||Arrowhead Stadium||Recap|
|4||August 30||Miami Dolphins||W 7–0||3–2||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|1||at Indianapolis Colts||L 10–41||0–1||RCA Dome||Recap|
|2||September 16||at Tampa Bay Buccaneers||L 14–31||0–2||Raymond James Stadium||Recap|
|3||Tennessee Titans||L 14–31||0–3||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|5||October 7||Carolina Panthers||L 13–16||0–4||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|6||October 14||at Seattle Seahawks||W 28–17||1–4||Qwest Field||Recap|
|7||October 21||Atlanta Falcons||W 22–16||2–4||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|8||October 28||at San Francisco 49ers||W 31–10||3–4||Monster Park||Recap|
|9||November 4||Jacksonville Jaguars||W 41–24||4–4||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|10||November 11||St. Louis Rams||L 29–37||4–5||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|11||November 18||at Houston Texans||L 10–23||4–6||Reliant Stadium||Recap|
|12||November 25||at Carolina Panthers||W 31–6||5–6||Bank of America Stadium||Recap|
|13||December 2||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||L 23–27||5–7||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|14||December 10||at Atlanta Falcons||W 34–14||6–7||Georgia Dome||Recap|
|15||December 16||Arizona Cardinals||W 31–24||7–7||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|16||December 23||Philadelphia Eagles||L 23–38||7–8||Louisiana Superdome||Recap|
|17||December 30||at Chicago Bears||L 25–33||7–9||Soldier Field||Recap|
|(4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers||9||7||0||.563||5–1||8–4||334||270||L2|
|New Orleans Saints||7||9||0||.438||3–3||6–6||379||388||L2|
Week 1: at Indianapolis Colts
The 2007 New Orleans Saints began their regular season in the annual Thursday night Kickoff game against the defending Super Bowl champion Indianapolis Colts. In the first quarter, New Orleans trailed early as Super Bowl XLI MVP Peyton Manning completed a 27-yard TD pass to WR Marvin Harrison for the score of the period. In the second quarter, the Saints managed to get their only touchdown of the game as DB Jason David (a former Colt) returned a fumble 55 yards to the endzone. Afterwards, New Orleans took the lead with kicker Olindo Mare getting a 34-yard field goal. Indianapolis tied the game prior to halftime with kicker Adam Vinatieri nailing a 33-yard field goal. In the second half, the Colts dominated the rest of the game. During the third quarter, RB Joseph Addai got a 2-yard TD run, while Manning hooked up with WR Reggie Wayne on a 29-yard TD pass. For the fourth quarter, Indianapolis wrapped up the game with Vinatieri getting a 33-yard field goal, Manning & Wayne hooking up with each other again on a 45-yard TD pass, and DB Matt Giordano returning an interception 83 yards for a touchdown.
With the loss, the Saints began the year at 0–1.
Q2 – NO – 6:30 – Olindo Mare 34-yard FG (NO 10-7)
Q2 – IND – 0:45 – Adam Vinatieri 33-yard FG (10–10)
Q3 – IND – 9:45 – Joseph Addai 2-yard TD run (Vinatieri kick) (IND 17–10)
Q3 – IND – 6:11 – 29-yard TD pass from Peyton Manning to Reggie Wayne (Vinatieri kick) (IND 24–10)
Q4 – IND – 14:12 – Adam Vinatieri 33-yard FG (IND 27–10)
Q4 – IND – 10:05 – 45-yard TD pass from Peyton Manning to Reggie Wayne (Vinatieri kick) (IND 34–10)
Q4 – IND – 0:55 – Matt Giordano 83-yard interception return TD (Vinatieri kick) (IND 41–10)
Week 2: at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Following their season-opening loss to the Colts, the Saints flew to Raymond James Stadium for an NFC South duel with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In the first quarter, New Orleans trailed early as Bucs RB Carnell "Cadillac" Williams got a 1-yard TD run for the only score of the period. In the second quarter, the Saints continued to struggle as Tampa Bay QB Jeff Garcia hooked up with WR Joey Galloway on a 69-yard TD pass and a 24-yard pass.
In the third quarter, the Buccaneers extended their lead with Williams getting another 1-yard TD run. Afterwards, New Orleans finally got on the board with FB Mike Karney getting a 1-yard TD run. However, in the fourth quarter, Tampa Bay closed out the game with kicker Matt Bryant's 27-yard field goal. The Saints got the final score of the game as QB Drew Brees completed a 4-yard TD pass to WR Marques Colston.
With the loss, the Saints fell to 0–2.
|1||TB||5:30||Williams 1-yard TD run (Bryant kick)||TB 7–0|
|2||TB||13:23||69-yard TD pass from Garcia to Galloway (Bryant kick)||TB 14–0|
|2||TB||1:12||24-yard TD pass from Garcia to Galloway (Bryant kick)||TB 21–0|
|3||TB||4:32||Williams 1-yard TD run (Bryant kick)||TB 28–0|
|3||NO||5:55||Karney 1-yard TD run (Mare kick)||TB 28–7|
|4||TB||7:35||Bryant 27-yard FG||TB 31–7|
|4||NO||2:56||4-yard TD pass from Brees to Colston (Mare kick)||TB 31–14|
Week 3: vs. Tennessee Titans
Trying to snap a two-game skid, the Saints played their Week 3 Monday night homeopener, as they played an interconference duel with the Tennessee Titans. In the first quarter, New Orleans' struggles continued as Titans kicker Rob Bironas nailed a 33-yard field goal, while QB Vince Young completed a 35-yard TD pass to WR Brandon Jones. In the second quarter, the Saints managed to get the only score of the period as RB Reggie Bush got a 1-yard TD run. In the third quarter, New Orleans took the lead with Bush getting another 1-yard TD run. However, Tennessee regained the lead with RB LenDale White's 1-yard TD run. In the fourth quarter, the Titans took over as Young completed a 3-yard TD pass to TE Bo Scaife, while DB Vincent Fuller ended the game with an interception return of 61 yards for a touchdown. In the game, QB Drew Brees was 29 of 45 for 225 yards with 4 interceptions (3 of them coming from LB Keith Bulluck).
With the loss, the Saints entered their Bye Week at 0–3.
|1||TEN||2:44||Bironas 33-yard FG||TEN 3–0|
|2||TEN||12:55||Jones 35-yard TD pass from Young (Bironas kick)||TEN 10–0|
|2||NO||1:00||Bush 1-yard TD run (Mare kick)||TEN 10–7|
|3||NO||7:55||Bush 1-yard TD run (Mare kick)||NO 14-10|
|3||TEN||2:19||White 1-yard TD run (Bironas kick)||TEN 17–14|
|4||TEN||8:55||Scaife 3-yard TD pass from Young (Bironas kick)||TEN 24–14|
|4||TEN||2:39||Fuller 61-yard interception return TD (Bironas kick)||TEN 31–14|
Week 5: vs. Carolina Panthers
Coming off their bye week and still in search of their first win of the year, the Saints stayed at home at played a Week 5 divisional duel with the Carolina Panthers. In the first quarter, New Orleans trailed early as Panthers kicker John Kasay got a 23-yard field goal. The Saints responded with kicker Olindo Mare getting a 25-yard field goal. In the second quarter, the Panthers retook the lead with Kasay's 35-yard field goal. New Orleans responded with Mare kicking a 28-yard field goal.
In the third quarter, the Saints took the lead with FB Mike Karney getting a 2-yard TD run for the only score of the period. However, in the fourth quarter, Carolina came back to win with QB David Carr completing a 17-yard TD pass to WR Steve Smith, along with Kasay's 52-yard field goal as time ran out.
With the loss, the Saints fell to their first 0–4 start since 1996.
Week 6: at Seattle Seahawks
Q2 – NO – 5:18 – Lance Moore 7-yard run (Olindo Mare kick) (6–66, 2:48) [NO 21-0 SEA]
Q2 – NO – 0:30 – Marques Colston 2-yard pass from Drew Brees (Olindo Mare kick) (9–80 1:46) [NO 28-7 SEA]
Q2 – SEA – 0:02 – Josh Brown 52-yard FG (4–38 0:28) [NO 28-10 SEA]
Q4 – SEA – 6:39 – Nate Burleson 22-yard pass from Matt Hasselbeck (Josh Brown kick) (6–80 1:31) [NO 28-17 SEA]
Week 7: vs. Atlanta Falcons
Coming off of their road win over the Seahawks, the Saints went home for a Week 7 divisional duel with the Atlanta Falcons. In the first quarter, New Orleans drew first blood as QB Drew Brees completed a 37-yard TD pass to WR Devery Henderson. The Falcons replied with former Saints kicker Morten Andersen getting a 38-yard field goal. In the second quarter, Atlanta took lead with Andersen kicking a 33-yard field goal, along with QB Byron Leftwich completing a 9-yard TD pass to WR Roddy White.
In the third quarter, New Orleans regained the lead with rookie RB Pierre Thomas getting a 24-yard TD run for the only score of the period. In the fourth quarter, the Falcons tried to rally as Andersen kicked a 21-yard field goal. The Saints sealed the win with Brees completing a 4-yard TD pass to RB Reggie Bush, with Bush getting the 2-point conversion on the ground.
With the win, New Orleans improved to 2–4.
Week 8: at San Francisco 49ers
Coming off their divisional home win over the Falcons, the Saints flew to Monster Park for a Week 8 intraconference duel with the San Francisco 49ers. In the first quarter, New Orleans drew first blood with QB Drew Brees completing a 17-yard TD pass to WR Marques Colston, along with kicker Olindo Mare getting a 26-yard field goal. In the second quarter, the Saints continued their offensive revival with Brees completing a 2-yard TD pass to WR Terrance Copper, along with a 3-yard TD pass to Colston.
In the third quarter, the 49ers tried to come back as kicker Joe Nedney nailed a 29-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, New Orleans managed to put the game out of reach with Brees and Colston hooking up with each other one last time on a 15-yard TD pass. Afterwards, San Francisco's only response was by QB Alex Smith completing a 7-yard TD pass to TE Vernon Davis.
With the win, the Saints improved to 3–4.
Week 9: vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
Coming off their road win over the 49ers, the Saints went home for a Week 9 interconference duel with the Jacksonville Jaguars. In the first quarter, New Orleans drew first blood as kicker Olindo Mare managed to get a 46-yard field goal, while RB Reggie Bush got a 1-yard TD run. The Jaguars responded with QB Quinn Gray completing an 80-yard TD pass to WR Reggie Williams, along with former Saints kicker John Carney getting a 30-yard field goal. New Orleans responded with QB Drew Brees completing a 2-yard TD pass to Bush. However, Jacksonville immediately answered as RB Maurice Jones-Drew returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown to end the period. In the second quarter, the Saints regained the lead as Brees completed an 8-yard TD pass to WR Lance Moore for the only score of the period.
In the third quarter, New Orleans increased its lead with CB Mike McKenzie returning an interception 75 yards for a touchdown, while Brees completed a 4-yard TD pass to WR David Patten. In the fourth quarter, the Jaguars tried to come back as Gray completed a 15-yard TD pass to WR Dennis Northcutt. The Saints closed out the game with Mare nailing a 34-yard field goal.
With the win, New Orleans improved to 4–4.
Week 10: vs. St. Louis Rams
Coming off a 41–24 victory over the Jaguars, the Saints stayed home to face the winless St. Louis Rams. The Saints started the game with an impressive opening drive that culminated in a 7-yard burst by Reggie Bush to give the Saints an early 7–0 lead. However, Rams running back Stephen Jackson answered with a 1-yard run of his own to tie the game toward the end of the 1st quarter.
Midway through the 2nd quarter, tight end Randy McMichael gave the Rams a 14–7 lead on a 2-yard pass from Jackson. Jeff Wilkins made it a two-score game with a 49-yard field goal three minutes later. The Saints went to the locker room trailing 17–7.
In the 2nd half, Wilkins kicked his 2nd field goal of the game, a 21-yard attempt, to increase the lead to 13. Toward the end of the 3rd, Isaac Bruce caught a 9-yard pass by Marc Bulger to make it a 27–7 lead, putting the Saints in danger of losing their first game since early October.
Drew Bennett added to the St. Louis lead by catching a three-yard pass by Bulger to give Bulger his second touchdown of the game, and to give St. Louis a surprising 34–7 lead. Drew Brees and Billy Miller hooked up for a 1-yard pass with 11:36 left to cut the lead to 34–13. The Saints then converted a two-point conversion on a Bush run, to make it 34–15. Aaron Stecker then scored on a two-yard run with 4:42 remaining to cut it to 34–21. This time, however, they failed on the two-point conversion. With 1:55 left, a Wilkins field goal made it 37–21. The Saints scored another touchdown with 37 seconds left, but their attempt to recover the ball from an onside kick failed, and the Rams held on to defeat the Saints 37–29, giving the Rams their first victory in 2007 and dropping the Saints to 4–5.
Week 11: at Houston Texans
In the first quarter, New Orleans got the early lead as kicker Olindo Mare managed to get a 52-yard field goal. However, the Texans took the lead with QB Matt Schaub completing a 73-yard TD pass to WR Andre Johnson. In the second quarter, the Saints regained the lead with QB Drew Brees completing a 6-yard TD pass to WR Devery Henderson. However, Houston retook the lead with Schaub completing a 10-yard TD pass to TE Joel Dreessen.
After a scoreless third quarter, the Texans sealed the win as kicker Kris Brown nailed a 36-yarder, a 53-yarder, and a 23-yard field goal.
With the loss, New Orleans fell to 4–6. So far, all 6 of their losses came when they committed at least 2 turnovers in a game.
Week 12: at Carolina Panthers
In the first quarter, New Orleans trailed early as Panthers kicker John Kasay managed to get a 45-yard field goal for the only score of the period. In the second quarter, the Saints took the lead with QB Drew Brees completing a 1-yard TD pass to TE Lance Moore, along with kicker Olindo Mare kicking a 46-yard field goal. Carolina ended the half as Kasay nailing a 29-yard field goal.
With the win, the Saints improved to 5–6.
For Marques Colston, this marked his fifth-straight game of having at least 65 reception yards in one game.
Week 13: vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Coming off their divisional road win over the Panthers, the Saints went home for a Week 13 NFC South rematch with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In the first quarter, New Orleans trailed early with Buccaneers kicker Matt Bryant getting a 27-yard field goal. Afterwards, the Saints took the lead with QB Drew Brees completing a 4-yard TD pass to WR Terrance Copper. In the second quarter, Tampa Bay regained the lead with QB Luke McCown completing a 1-yard TD pass to TE Anthony Becht, along with Bryant nailing a 31-yard field goal. Afterwards, New Orleans retook the lead with Brees completing a 45-yard TD pass to WR Devery Henderson.
In the third quarter, the Buccaneers regained the lead with RB Earnest Graham getting a 25-yard TD run. Later, the Saints retook the lead with CB Mike McKenzie returning an interception 53 yards for a touchdown. In the fourth quarter, New Orleans increased its lead with DE Will Smith taking McCown down in his endzone for a safety. However, an attempted double reverse resulted in a lost fumble. It allowed Tampa Bay to get into position for the win, as McCown completed a 4-yard TD pass to TE Jerramy Stevens.
With the loss, the Saints fell to 5–7.
Week 14: at Atlanta Falcons
Hoping to rebound from their divisional home loss to the Buccaneers, the Saints flew to the Georgia Dome for a Week 14 Monday Night NFC South rematch with the Atlanta Falcons. In the first quarter, New Orleans drew first blood as QB Drew Brees completed a 25-yard TD pass to WR David Patten. The Falcons responded with QB Chris Redman completing a 33-yard TD pass to WR Roddy White. In the second quarter, the Saints started to pull away as kicker Olindo Mare managed to get a 23-yard field goal, while Brees completed a 15-yard TD pass to WR Marques Colston.
In the third quarter, New Orleans pulled away as Brees hooked up with Colston again on a 2-yard TD pass, while Safety Roman Harper returned an interception 31 yards for a touchdown. In the fourth quarter, Atlanta got their last strike of the game as Redman completed a 13-yard TD pass to WR Michael Jenkins. The Saints wrapped up their victory with Mare nailing a 36-yard field goal.
With their second-straight season-sweeping win over the Falcons, New Orleans improved to 6–7.
Week 15: vs. Arizona Cardinals
Coming off their Monday night divisional road win over the Falcons, the Saints went home for a Week 15 intraconference duel with the Arizona Cardinals. In the first quarter, New Orleans trialed early as Cardinals QB Kurt Warner completed a 1-yard TD pass to TE Troy Bienemann. The Saints responded with QB Drew Brees completing a 19-yard TD pass to WR Marques Colston. In the second quarter, New Orleans took the lead with RB Aaron Stecker getting a 1-yard TD run. Arizona tied the game with Warner completing an 18-yard TD pass to WR Larry Fitzgerald, yet the Saints regained the lead prior to halftime with Brees completing a 32-yard TD pass to WR David Patten.
In the third quarter, New Orleans increased its lead with Stecker getting a 6-yard TD run. The Cardinals responded with Warner completing a 3-yard TD pass to TE Ben Patrick. The Saints replied with kicker Martín Gramática getting a 31-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, Arizona tried to rally as kicker Neil Rackers nailed a 26-yard field goal. New Orleans' defense held on for the victory.
With the win, the Saints improved to 7–7. At this point, Drew Brees had thrown 10 touchdowns and only 1 interception over the past four games.
Week 16: vs. Philadelphia Eagles
Coming off the win against the Cardinals. The Saints stayed home for a Week 16 matchup against the Eagles, who they beat at home twice in the previous season, including in the playoffs. In the first quarter, the Eagles scored first as Kevin Curtis recovered a McNabb (38-yard run) fumble in the end zone putting Philly up 7–0, while the Saints responded with RB Aaron Stecker scoring 2 TD's (3-yard run & 1-yard run) to put the Saints up 14–7. The lead did not last long, as Eagles RB Correll Buckhalter scored a 20 yard TD run, following the Eagles' next possession as McNabb completed a 30-yard TD pass to Reggie Brown as the Eagles went up 21–14 after both Gramatica and Akers traded field gals apiece in the 2nd quarter.
In the third quarter, the Eagles took advantage of the goal line stand and capped a 99-yard touchdown drive with McNabb completing a 9-yard touchdown pass to Greg Lewis. In the 4th quarter, the Saints tried to rally back with M. Gramatica kicking 35- and 26-yard field goals. The Eagles sealed the game with Kevin Curtis hauling in a 9-yard touchdown catch, allowing them to get the Saints back for the previous season.
Week 17: at Chicago Bears
Coming off that home loss against the Eagles, the Saints in Week 17 travel to Soldier Field for a NFC Championship rematch from 2006 Conference against the Bears. New Orleans coming in this game needing a win and both losses by the Redskins & Vikings to clinch the final playoff spot in the NFC Playoff race. New Orleans trails right away in the 1st quarter as Bears K Robbie Gould connecting a 39-yard field goal, along with Kyle Orton completing a 19-yard pass to Mark Bradley for a 10–0 lead. As the Saints managed to get on the board in the second quarter with Drew Brees completing a 3-yard Touchdown pass to Marques Colston. The Bears continue to roll with Orton hooking a 9-yard TD to Bernard Berrian. New Orleans responds with Drew Brees connecting to M. Colston for a 21-yard touchdown reception. Both the Bears & Saints then closed out the first half with Orton completing a 55-yard TD pass to D. Hester, Along with Saints K Martin Gramatica kicks a 48-yard Field Goal.
In the third quarter the Saints continue to fall behind with Devin Hester returning a 64-yard punt for a touchdown. Then the Bears in the 4th quarter add on more points recording a Safety due to Jahri Evans being penalized in the end zone. While Drew Brees managed to hooked up to Pierre Thomas for an 11-yard touchdown strike (along with the 2 pt conversion). Afterwards the Saints failed to recover the onside kick allowing Chicago to preserve the win.
With the loss, the Saints fell to 7–9 and were eliminated from postseason contention.