Jameis Winston makes it clear Dennis Allen lost control of Saints

While addressing the media following a blowout victory over the Atlanta Falcons, New Orleans Saints backup quarterback Jameis Winston made it clear that head coach Dennis Allen has lost control of the locker room.

Atlanta Falcons v New Orleans Saints
Atlanta Falcons v New Orleans Saints / Chris Graythen/GettyImages

In what ended up being Atlanta Falcons head coach Arthur Smith’s last game as the team’s coach, the Falcons were defeated handedly by their divisional rival New Orleans Saints. In Smith’s final moments as the head coach of the Falcons, he was seen visibly and audibly directing frustration toward Saints head coach Dennis Allen after backup quarterback Jameis Winston elected to run up the score on the team’s final drive of the game.

With less than two minutes remaining and the Saints leading 41-17, Falcons backup quarterback Logan Woodside threw a pass that was intercepted by Saints defensive back Tyrann Mathieu. Not only did Mathieu intercept the pass, but he returned the ball to the Falcons one-yard line for a 74-yard return. Following the interception and return, all the Saints needed to do was kneel the ball and let the clock run out but Winston had other plans.

On first-and-goal from the one, Winston and the offense lined up in victory formation only to call running back Jamaal Williams’ number for what ended up being his first rushing touchdown of the season. 

Jameis Winston ignored Saints coach Dennis Allen for Jamaal Williams TD

After the game, Winston spoke to the media to discuss the matter, making it clear that all hell had broken loose in the Saints locker room. After apologizing to Allen for going against the play call, Winston stated that it was a “team decision” to go for the touchdown and help Jamaal Williams find the end zone. Based on Winston’s comments, it sounded like the team collectively agreed to ignore their head coach, illustrating that Allen’s voice is not being heard.

While Winston and the team are the ones who overruled Allen’s decision to take a knee and end the game, Allen is the one who had to clean up the mess. Allen apologized to the Falcons and Smith directly in his postgame interview. “We should’ve taken a knee,” Allen said.

It is easy to see why Smith was so animated about the decision, but Allen may not have been the one deserving of being on the receiving end of his exasperation. Despite losing control of the locker room, the Saints are expected to retain Allen for the 2024 NFL campaign.

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