3 New Orleans Saints to blame for crucial division loss against Buccaneers

The New Orleans Saints lost to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, and the NFC South is suddenly in Tampa's hands.

Houston Texans v New Orleans Saints
Houston Texans v New Orleans Saints / Wesley Hitt/GettyImages
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The New Orleans Saints fell to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday. Derek Carr and New Orleans offense never really got the ball moving in the right direction, while the pass defense gave up three touchdowns to Baker Mayfield and Co.

It was unclear if Carr would play in the first place given his sprained throwing shoulder. While one has to admire Carr's confidence and toughness, the former Raiders QB could have sat this one out. Instead, he played through injury. Alvin Kamara returned as well for the Saints, but failed to get much going on the ground, as he received just 11 touches for 51 yards.

New Orleans Saints to blame: Dennis Allen

Allen gave the go-ahead for Carr to play in the first place, despite considering him week-to-week initially when he went down. The star quarterback signed a four-year deal this offseason, and it's far too early to be testing a sprained shoulder in Week 4.

“He was limited in practice today,” Allen said literally just a few days ago. “Every day he’s gotten better. I thought he did a nice job today, we’ll see.”

"Nothing has changed. We said we're going to evaluate him throughout the week and see where he's at. He didn't practice today, we'll see where we're at tomorrow with him. But I'm not ruling anything out."

Evidently, Allen thought Carr was healthy enough to play, though his performance on the field suggested otherwise.

Allen also has a say in much of the defensive play-calling. New Orleans gave up 26 points and three passing touchdowns to Mayfield when they needed a solid performance given the injury to their quarterback.