DE Will Smith—Grade—B
Think about how unimpressive Atlanta’s rush defense was. Think about how New Orleans’ defense swarmed to the football in the run game. Recognize that most of that penetration arrived from the outside of the Saints’ defense. Insert thought that Will Smith played well (here).
DT Brodrick Bunkley—Grade—B
Brodrick Bunkley never has been a pass-rushing threat. In this game he was not either. He did make a few plays, though. Bunkley will gladly get credit for some tackles he probably didn’t deserve.
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. Only once did he really make a big play.
DE Cameron Jordan—Grade—A-
Cameron Jordan wasn’t quite as good as Monday night. But he was all over the field on Sunday against Atlanta. He even made a tackle on the edge on Michael Turner without a helmet on his head. He was a beast again Sunday.
DT Tom Johnson—Grade—C
Tom Johnson played better again in this game. He was constantly getting penetration in the running game, and making things happen otherwise. This was the kind of effort Saints fans expected out of Tom Johnson based on the way he played earlier in the year.
DT Akiem Hicks—Grade—B
Akiem Hicks did not make a ton of plays in this game. But his play was consistent. That’s about all you can ask for from a young rookie defensive tackle.
DE Junior Galette—Grade—N/A
Galette did not play in this game.
DE Martez Wilson—Grade—B
Martez Wilson was awesome on Sunday. He was all over the football field. He put constant pressure on Matt Ryan and did a nice job against the run and in special teams.
Needless to say, Wilson is putting in a nice effort this year, and Sunday was merely a continuation of that.