DE Will Smith—Grade—A
Will Smith has played well as an individual in most games this season. Monday night he proved he still has a step on at least the worst of NFL offensive linemen. He made Philly tackles look like High Schoolers at times Monday night. The pass-rushing effort was impressive by Smith.
DT Brodrick Bunkley—Grade—B
When the opposing team has so many explosive run plays, it is difficult to give the team’s primary gap-plugger a positive grade. But Bunkley was also active as a pass-rusher—which could not have been said of him in previous games. That was encouraging for New Orleans.
DT Sedrick Ellis—Grade—N/A
Sedrick Ellis was noticeably absent from the lips of ESPN Play-By-Play announcer Mike Tirico on Monday night. He made zero impact on the football game—good or bad. It is becoming more and more clear that Ellis’ time in New Orleans is nearing its culmination.
DE Cameron Jordan—Grade—A
Cameron Jordan was amazing Monday night. Not only was he constantly in the face of Michael Vick, but he was also getting off blockers and forcing LeSean McCoy to cut back. It is not his fault no Saints defenders stepped up to make the necessary tackle.
DT Tom Johnson—Grade—C
Tom Johnson’s play has leveled off a bit the past few games. Johnson, like Sed Ellis, made no significant impact on the game—good or bad.
DT Akiem Hicks—Grade—B
At least Akiem Hicks was in the game when the defensive line showed improvement against the run on Monday night. He wasn’t in the face of Michael Vick often, but still was effective.
DE Junior Galette—Grade—N/A
Galette left the game very early. He did not return.
DE Martez Wilson—Grade—C
Martez Wilson was awesome on Monday night. He was flagged for an incomprehensible roughing-the-passer early in the game. But he did not allow that to deter him from continually rushing the passer. The result was positive for the team, and Wilson.