It would have been easy to guess that the New Orleans Saints would have an offensive showcase at home Sunday night against the Dallas Cowboys. The Saints offenses couldn’t be stopped en route to getting an NFL-record 40 first downs and a franchise-record 625 total yards in their 12th straight prime-time victory in the Superdome. New Orleans had 242 yards rushing, its highest total since 1990.
The biggest surprise though was a career-high 145 yards rushing on 14 carries from running back Mark Ingram, who appeared to finally be falling out of favor with Saints Head Coach Sean Peyton. Ingram came into the game with 21 carries in just three games this year as he’s battled injuries and a lack of playing time that had many wondering if he would ever get double-digit carries in a game again for New Orleans.
But this was the perfect storm for Ingram. Forgotten in the midst of last night’s game was the Cowboys were actually defending the Saints well until they lost the quarterback of their defense in middle linebacker Sean Lee, who’s been playing like an All-Pro so far this year. Once he was knocked out of the game with a hamstring injury, the Saints scored at will and that allowed Ingram to get more touches than normal as their offense converted an NFL-record 40 first-downs.
That led to them running a ridiculous 80 plays, which made it impossible for Ingram not to get at least 14 carries for only the fifth time in his last 20 games dating back to last season.
And of the Saints 244 rushing yards, 165 of them came before first contact, led by Mark Ingram’s’ 107. Simply put, the Cowboys were constantly out of position, allowing Ingram to have the best game of his career.
It’s nice to see him finally producing, but he’s fool’s gold in fantasy football. He’ll be lucky if he has even one more game this year in which he gets 14 carries, so don’t make the mistake of dropping a decent player of your fantasy football team to add him.