Thursday, August 7, 2008

Pre-Season Football (Live-Blogging) Saints vs. Cardinals

There are 5 Pre-Season games tonight in the NFL, and while all eyes are on Cleveland for the Browns-Jets game trying to catch a glimpse of #4 on the sidelines, we'll be focusing on the ESPN nationally televised New Orleans Saints vs. Arizona Cardinals football game. Both of these teams just barely missed out on the playoffs in 2007, and both hope to start fresh tonight.

Things to look out for tonight:

The 'New" Saints players- Former Pro Bowlers TE Jeremy Shockey and LB Jonathan Vilma make their debut tonight for the Saints; both hope to put the team over the top and into contention. Update: (neither are playing tonight).

Cardinals QB's- While QB Matt Lineart is the starter, keep an eye on former 2-time MVP QB Kurt Warner, who will push for playing time at some point this season.

Saints RB's- RB Reggie Bush will need to carry the load with a banged-up RB Deuce McCallister, back-up RB Pierre Thomas has looked very good in training camp so far.

Rookie 1st Round premieres of Saints DT Sedric Ellis and Cardinals CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie

Here is a Live-Blog of the 1st-Half of the game:

QB Drew Brees looks good, completed a couple of short passes and got the ball out in time before preventing a sack, his "out pattern" throws have good zip on them.

RB Reggie Bush says he "likes to run up the middle because he doesn't have speed to get outside"; run middle for no yards, run right for 9 yards and 1st down, and screen pass for 1 yard; 3 consecutive plays.

QB Drew Brees looks GOOD, just led a 13-play drive going 6 for 7; 35 yards and a 7-yard TD pass to WR David Patten. Brees had good protection, was patient and lofted a perfect pass into coverage for Patten to come down with the score. Note: New-look Arizona defense got "walked all over".

Saints 7-0.

On 3rd-8, QB Matt Leinart moves around in pocket, hits WR Jamaica Rector for 23 yards.

WR Anquan Bolden is OUT tonight, RB Edgerrin James has 2 carries for 5 yards.

Saints LB Mark Simoneau runs right through OT Levi Brown for a QB Sack.

QB Drew Brees is done for the night, insert new back-up and long time QB Mark Brunell.

Tough luck for RB Reggie Bush, TWO long Bush runs (13 and 17 yards) brought back on Offensive "Hold" penalties, both times Bush made something out of nothing.

Right after I was going to write that the Cardinals offense looks "bad", Leinart throws a 34-yard crossing pass on 3rd-5 to WR Steve Breaston to finish the 1st Quarter.

Saints 7-0

A lot of excitement from the coaching staff for Cardinals rookie RB Tim Hightower, who rushes right for a 2-yard TD.
Tied 7-7

RB Pierre Thomas, who has a lot of people buzzing right now, returns a kick-off 57 yards before being dragged down out of bounds by the Cardinals kicker.

QB Matt Leinart finishes the night 7 for 8; 91 yards on two drives.

QB Brian St. Pierre comes in for the Cardinals, looks like QB Kurt Warner is out.

At this point there has been a lot of penalties and mistakes from both teams on this current drive. Most of the 2nd/3rd string players are in and its noticeable.

Note: There has only been about 57 references to QB Brett Favre and the Jets

K Neil Rackers boots a 30-yard FG

Cardinals 10-7

Welcome to the NFL Saints WR Robert Meachem! The 2007 1st Round Pick (Tennessee) who missed the entire last season, hauls in a 49-yard catch from Brunell to inside the 10 yard line. He has 2 catches on the drive.

Saints go for it on 4th-goal on the 1-yard line, RB Pierre Thomas gets STUFFED by Cardinals rookie LB Ali Highsmith (LSU)

Cardinals 10-7 at Halftime

This concludes the 1st Half Live Blogging of the game...

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