Aug 14, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA;  Cleveland Browns kicker Cody Parkey (2) kicks off in the first quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Saints K Cody Parkey going on IR

The New Orleans Saints could be in the market for a fourth kicker already in the 2021 season.

Cody Parkey injured his groin during pregame warmups in the Saints’ win over the Washington Football Team on Sunday and is headed to injured reserve.

The Saints brought Parkey aboard last week to replace the struggling Aldrick Rosas, who was signed to replace Wil Lutz. The latter is on IR while recovering from groin muscle surgery over the summer.

With a bye this week, the Saints are hoping Lutz will be ready to come off IR in Week 7.

Parkey, 29, converted just 3 of 5 extra-point attempts in Sunday’s win while trying to play through the injury. He did not attempt a field goal.

Parkey kicked in 15 games for the Cleveland Browns in 2020. He’s made 84.6 percent of his field-goal attempts in his career (84 games) and converted 93.5 percent of his PATs.

–Field Level Media

Oct 10, 2021; Landover, Maryland, USA; New Orleans Saints wide receiver Marquez Callaway (1) catches a touchdown  pass against the Washington Football Team during the first half at FedExField. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Hail Mary helps Saints to 33-22 win over Washington

Jameis Winston threw four touchdown passes as the visiting New Orleans Saints defeated the Washington Football Team 33-22 on Sunday afternoon.

Winston completed 15 of 30 passes for 279 yards and overcame an interception and a lost fumble to lead the Saints (3-2). Two of his touchdown passes went to Marquez Callaway and one each went to Alvin Kamara, who also rushed for a touchdown, and Deonte Harris.

Antonio Gibson ran for two touchdowns and Dustin Hopkins kicked three field goals for Washington (2-3). Taylor Heinicke completed 20 of 41 for 248 yards with two interceptions.

Hopkins’ 24-yard field goal produced the only points of the third quarter and pulled Washington within 20-16.

Just a minute into the fourth quarter, P.J. Williams intercepted Heinicke, leading to Winston’s 12-yard touchdown pass to Callaway, giving New Orleans a 27-16 lead with 12:16 remaining.

Heinicke converted a fourth and 14 on the way to Gibson’s 1-yard touchdown run that left the Saints with a 27-22 lead after a failed two-point conversion with 7:56 left.

Winston’s 19-yard touchdown pass to Kamara gave New Orleans a 33-22 lead with 3:21 left.

The first possession of the game ended with Winston being intercepted by Cole Holcomb, setting up Hopkins’ 45-yard field goal.

Winston bounced back on the next possession with a career-long 72-yard touchdown pass to Harris, giving New Orleans a 7-3 lead.

Washington drove 72 yards on the next drive to give Hopkins a chance at a 23-yard field goal, which he connected to get move the score to 7-6 with 4:58 left in the first quarter.

The Saints seemed to withstand Winston’s lost fumble at their 44, but roughing-the-punter and pass interference penalties kept alive a possession that ended with Gibson’s 5-yard touchdown run. That gave Washington a 13-7 lead early in the second quarter.

Kamara ran 23 yards for a touchdown tie the score at 13. Cody Parkey had his first of two missed extra point attempts.

Washington punted from its end zone and New Orleans took over at its 49 with eight seconds left in the half. Winston launched a Hail Mary pass that a leaping Callaway caught in the end zone as time expired to give the Saints a 20-13 halftime lead.

–Field Level Media

Oct 10, 2021; Landover, Maryland, USA; New Orleans Saints wide receiver Taysom Hill (7) is helped to his feet after being injured against the Washington Football Team during the second quarter at FedExField. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Saints’ Taysom Hill (concussion) ruled out vs. Washington

Versatile New Orleans Saints utility player Taysom Hill sustained a concussion and was ruled out for the remainder of Sunday’s game against the host Washington Football Team.

Hill was injured after he was on the receiving end of a helmet-to-helmet hit by Washington’s William Jackson during the first half. Hill remained on his back for several moments before getting to his feet. He was then carted off the field.

Hill had one catch for 11 yards on Sunday to boost his season totals to three and 37, respectively. He also has completed 3 of 4 passes for 12 yards with an interception on the season, and rushed 16 times for 77 yards and three touchdowns.

–Field Level Media

Sep 26, 2021; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA;  New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) passes the ball against New England Patriots during the first half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Saints visit Washington as both sides seek consistent play

The New Orleans Saints and the Washington Football Team have a lot in common going into their meeting Sunday afternoon in Landover, Md.

The four-time defending NFC South division champion Saints (2-2) and defending NFC East champion Washington (2-2) both have alternated wins and losses during the first month.

If both patterns hold, the Saints will win Sunday because they’re coming off a loss and Washington is coming off a win. Either way, both teams are looking to string together some victories.

Washington coach Ron Rivera called his team’s start a “disappointment.”

“I think if we lived up to or played up to our abilities, if we’d done some of the things I think we’re capable of defensively, I think we could be better than 2-2,” Rivera said. “But we’re not.”

Washington was second in the NFL in total defense and fourth in scoring defense last season. But so far this season, it is fourth to last in total defense and third to last in scoring.

“We don’t have expectations. We have standards,” defensive tackle Jonathan Allen said. “We haven’t been achieving our standards. We’ve been talking about this for four weeks.”

If the defense is going to get better, it will have to do so without two starters that suffered season-ending injuries in a 34-30 win at Atlanta last Sunday.

Linebacker Jon Bostic sustained a pectoral injury and cornerback Torry McTyer tore an ACL.

The offense also is banged up as tight end Logan Thomas (hamstring) went to IR this week, guard Brandon Scherff (knee) and wide receivers Dyami Brown (knee), Curtis Samuel (groin) and Cam Sims (hamstring) were among six Washington players that did not participate in practice Wednesday.

Washington’s offense has managed to come through at the very end of its two victories; otherwise, the record might be worse.

Taylor Heinicke, who has been starting since Ryan Fitzpatrick went on injured reserve, led back-to-back touchdown drives to salvage the win at Atlanta last week with a go-ahead touchdown pass with 33 seconds left.

The Saints led the Giants 21-10 midway through the fourth quarter last week, but gave up a touchdown, two-point conversion and field goal before allowing a touchdown on the first possession of overtime for a 27-21 loss.

“We have to finish,” quarterback Jameis Winston said. “You can’t practice that. It’s a mentality. We have a lot of guys who are finishers.”

New Orleans coach Sean Payton said his team has “a sense of urgency to improve and we’re in the midst of doing that.”

“I wouldn’t say in Week 4, I am seeing our team the way I see it (being later),” Payton said. “I see a lot of players coming back at some point and slowly being integrated back into the lineup. In the meantime, the guys that are currently playing, we’re counting on to do well and play well.”

The Saints agreed to terms with free-agent kicker Cody Parkey on Tuesday and released Aldrick Rosas as their replacement for Wil Lutz, who is recovering from groin muscle surgery in the summer.

Center Erik McCoy (calf) and tackle Terron Armstead (elbow) missed practice Wednesday and seem unlikely to return before New Orleans returns from its bye next week.

“This is an important game for us,” Payton said. “It’s an NFC opponent. It’s a road game. There are a number of things that I’m pleased with and there are a number of things that you’re looking at and wanting to see improvement from.”

–Field Level Media

Aug 14, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA;  Cleveland Browns kicker Cody Parkey (2) kicks off in the first quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Saints agree to terms with K Cody Parkey

The New Orleans Saints agreed to terms with free agent Cody Parkey on Wednesday and released fellow kicker Aldrick Rosas.

Parkey is expected to hold that position while the Saints buy time for injured kicker Wil Lutz, who is still recovering from groin muscle surgery in the summer. Lutz made the Pro Bowl in 2019.

Parkey, 29, made 19 of 22 field-goal attempts and 43 of 47 extra-point tries with the Cleveland Browns last season. He has converted 121 of 143 field goals and 197 of 209 PATs with the Philadelphia Eagles (2014-15), Miami Dolphins (2017), Chicago Bears (2018), Tennessee Titans (2019) and Browns (2016, 2020).

Rosas, 26, made just 1 of 4 field-goal attempts this season, although two misses were from at least 50 yards.

Also on Wednesday, the Saints signed defensive end Jalyn Holmes to the active roster from the practice squad.

Holmes, 25, made one tackle in one game this season for New Orleans. He has 44 tackles and one sack in 26 career games (nine starts) with the Minnesota Vikings (2018-20) and Saints.

–Field Level Media

Oct 3, 2021; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA;  New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) reacts to a winning touchdown against the New Orleans Saints  in overtime  at Caesars Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Daniel Jones, Giants ruin Saints’ homecoming, win 27-21 in OT

Daniel Jones passed for 402 yards and two touchdowns and Saquon Barkley scored on a 6-yard touchdown run on the first possession of overtime as the visiting New York Giants defeated the New Orleans Saints 27-21 on Sunday afternoon.

Jones completed 28 of 40 passes and led the Giants (1-3) back from an 11-point fourth-quarter deficit. New York won on the final play of the game after losing its past two games on last-second field goals by the Washington Football Team and Atlanta Falcons.

Graham Gano’s 48-yard field goal with 31 seconds left in the fourth quarter tied the score and sent the game into overtime.

Kenny Golladay caught six passes for 116 yards to lead the Giants’ injury-depleted receiving corps.

Jameis Winston completed 17 of 23 pass attempts for 226 yards and a touchdown, Taysom Hill ran for two touchdowns and Alvin Kamara rushed for 120 yards on 26 carries to lead the Saints (2-2).

Winston threw a 58-yard completion to Marquez Callaway on the first play of the third quarter.

Two plays later, Hill ran 8 yards for a touchdown to give New Orleans its first lead, 14-7.

Gano made a 23-yard field goal to get New York within 14-10 at the end of the quarter.

Another 8-yard touchdown run from Hill gave the Saints a 21-10 lead with 12:09 remaining in the game.

Jones threw a 54-yard touchdown pass to Barkley, and Jones ran for a two-point conversion that pulled the Giants within 21-18 with 6:52 left.

After a New Orleans punt, New York took over at its 11-yard line with 3:01 left. Jones led a drive to the Saints 31 and Gano’s tying field goal.

After a scoreless first quarter, John Ross recovered his own fumble in the end zone at the end of a 51-yard pass completion from Jones to give the Giants a 7-0 lead.

Winston threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to Juwan Johnson to tie the score at seven at halftime.

The loss spoiled the Saints’ return to the Superdome. They have played all road games and trained in Fort Worth, Texas, since Hurricane Ida slammed into Louisiana on Aug. 19.

–Field Level Media

Saints, Pelicans owner discloses succession plan, wants teams in New Orleans

Gayle Benson, the owner of the NFL’s New Orleans Saints and the NBA’s Pelicans, has taken steps to ensure the teams remain in the city after her death.

Benson, who inherited the teams from her late husband, Tom, disclosed the succession plans in a joint report from The Times-Picayune and WVUE-TV. It revealed the plan to sell the Saints and Pelicans to parties who won’t relocate them, then distribute the proceeds to charity.

Per the report, the NFL has OK’d the plan, which is similar to one Ralph Wilson had in place for the Buffalo Bills. Following his 2014 death, the Bills were sold to Terry and Kim Pegula, who are hoping a new stadium can be built in Buffalo.

Gayle Benson was Tom Benson’s third wife and doesn’t have any heirs. Her late husband, who died in 2018, made a private settlement with his daughter and grandchildren to ensure the team stayed in Gayle’s hands, per the report.

“I can’t take it with me,” Benson, 74, said. “God gives us gifts, and this is a gift. I am a steward for this [organization]. And we help other people with it. My wish is to scatter all the good and gifts that God and Tom have given me to this city and community.”

Funds from the sale of the teams would go to charities directly benefiting the New Orleans area. On Aug. 30, Benson launched the Gulf Coast Renewal Fund with a $1 million donation after Hurricane Ida struck Louisiana.

The Saints currently are negotiating a lease extension with the state of Louisiana and the Caesars Superdome. A long-term lease would tie a prospective new owner to the city.

“I want to make sure that we keep the teams here,” Benson added. “I want them to stay in New Orleans forever.”

–Field Level Media

Sep 26, 2021; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) throws a pass against the New England Patriots during the first quarter at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Saints finally home, host Giants in Superdome

The New Orleans Saints are finally playing a game in the Superdome when they face the New York Giants on Sunday afternoon.

The Saints technically opened the season with a home game for scheduling purposes, but they faced the Green Bay Packers in Jacksonville, Fla., because New Orleans was in the early stages of recovering from Hurricane Ida.

Now they return to what coach Sean Payton called “a venue where many think it’s one of the most difficult places to play.”

New Orleans (2-1) was displaced to the Dallas-Fort Worth area for a month before returning home after a 28-13 victory at New England last Sunday.

“As soon as we got to the locker room, you could hear chanting of, ‘We’re going home. We’re going home,’” wide receiver Marquez Callaway said. “I’m happy to have slept in my bed finally and just happy to be here.”

The Saints will play before a full house at home for the first time since a divisional playoff loss to Minnesota after the 2019 regular season. The Superdome was empty at the start of last season and only a few thousand fans were allowed in later in the season because of COVID-19 restrictions.

“It’s going to be crazy in that building,” linebacker Demario Davis said. “I can’t wait for it.”

The Saints are a much different team than the one that played against the Vikes on Jan. 5, 2020. Drew Brees has retired, and the team has relied more on its defense and running game as the passing game adjusts to new quarterback Jameis Winston.

New Orleans is second-to-last in passing offense (341 yards), but third in scoring defense (14.0 points per game).

“Honestly, when I get on the bus (after a game) I’m not even thinking of how many yards we just threw for,” Payton said. “We’re in the business of winning. We’ve done a good job of understanding how to win football games two of these first three games.”

The Giants (0-3) are still trying to figure out how to win a game. They have lost their last two games on last-second field goals by Washington (30-29) and Atlanta (17-14).

“Close isn’t good enough,” Giants coach Joe Judge said, adding that the last-second field goals didn’t tell the whole story.

“Sometimes it’s four or five, seven, 10, whatever it is, plays throughout the game,” Judge said. “You have to look at it and say, ‘These were really the plays that stopped us early that prevented us late from having success.’”

The Giants are tied for third worst in the NFL with five touchdowns. They’ve converted just one-third of their red-zone opportunities into TDs (3-for-9).

“We have a couple different focal points to make sure we finish better in the red zone,” Judge said. “That’s something we have to do better as a team.”

Wide receivers Sterling Shepard (hamstring) and Darius Slayton (hamstring) were among four injured Giants to miss practice Wednesday.

Center Erik McCoy (calf) and tackle Terron Armstead (elbow) were the only Saints to miss practice Wednesday.

Judge expects a significant advantage for the Saints in the Superdome, where they have won their last three meetings with the Giants.

“We expect one of the greatest atmospheres we’ve ever been in,” he said. “That town takes a lot of pride in New Orleans, a lot of pride in their team and the team takes a lot of pride in representing their city.”

–Field Level Media

Sep 26, 2021; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA;  New Orleans Saints offensive tackle Terron Armstead (72) is injured on a play against New England Patriots during the first half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Saints OL Terron Armstead (elbow) out several weeks

New Orleans Saints left tackle Terron Armstead is going to miss several weeks with an injured elbow, NFL Network reported Monday.

The injury is not believed to be season-ending for the nine-year veteran, who has made the Pro Bowl in each of the past three seasons.

Armstead, 30, was hurt in the first quarter of the Saints’ victory at New England on Sunday when he collided with running back Tony Jones during a block. Armstead left the game and did not return. James Hurst replaced him.

Armstead has played in 92 games (88 starts) for the Saints since the team selected him in the third round of the 2013 draft. He has yet to play in all 16 games of a season.

The Saints (2-1) host the New York Giants (0-3) in Week 4.

–Field Level Media

Sep 26, 2021; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New Orleans Saints wide receiver Marquez Callaway (1) catches a touchdown against New England Patriots defensive back Jonathan Jones (31) during the first half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Saints pick off win against Patriots, Mac Jones

Jameis Winston threw two touchdown passes and the New Orleans defense grabbed the first three interceptions of Mac Jones’ career in a 28-13 defeat of the host New England Patriots Sunday afternoon.

Winston completed 13 of 21 for 128 yards and was not intercepted. Jones, the Patriots’ rookie No. 1 draft choice from Alabama, completed 30 of 51 pass attempts for 270 yards and one touchdown, but P.J. Williams’ interception set up a touchdown and Malcolm Jenkins had a 34-yard interception return for a touchdown for New Orleans (2-1).

Marshon Lattimore intercepted Jones’ final pass of the game.

Jones entered the game having completed 73.9 percent of his passes, but had thrown just one touchdown for the Patriots (1-2).

New Orleans, which had been displaced to the Dallas-Fort Worth area for four weeks because of Hurricane Ida, was scheduled to return home after the game.

On the first offensive play of the third quarter, Jones’ pass bounced off the fingers of Jonnu Smith and Jenkins intercepted and sprinted untouched for his touchdown and a 21-3 Saints lead.

Nick Folk’s 36-yard field goal cut the lead to 21-6 at the end of the third quarter.

Jones’ 22-yard touchdown pass to Kendrick Bourne reduced the lead to 21-13 with 9:22 left.

Taysom Hill ran 4 yards for a touchdown and a 28-13 lead with 2:37 left.

On the Saints’ second possession of the game, Winston threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to Alvin Kamara on third-and-7, giving New Orleans a 7-0 lead.

The score stayed that way at the end of the period when Aldrick Rosas missed a chance to extend the lead when he was wide left on a 52-yard field-goal attempt.

The Saints blocked a punt and started at the New England 49, but Rosas was wide left again from 36 yards.

Jones threw his first NFL interception when Williams picked him off and returned to the Patriots 9. Winston threw a 7-yard touchdown pass to Marquez Callaway on third-and-goal to increase the lead to 14-0.

The Patriots cut the lead to 14-3 at halftime when Folk kicked a 45-yard field goal.

–Field Level Media