The New Orleans Saints will begin their 2022 preseason slate on the road when they take on the Houston Texans. The Saints and the Texans both missed out on the playoffs last year, with the Saints finishing 9-8 and the Texans 4-13. Both teams will begin under new regimes as the Saints replaced Sean Payton with long-time defensive coordinator, Dennis Allen. Houston cut ties with David Culley last season and brought in Lovie Smith during the offseason.
Saints vs. Texans Game Information
TV Channel: Fox 8 (New Orleans); ABC (KTRK-TV, Houston, Channel 13)
Location: NRG Stadium, Houston, Texas
Time: 7 p.m. CST
Spread: Saints (-1)
The Texans-Saints Series
The last time the two met was in the regular season home opener for the Saints back in 2019 on Monday Night Football. The Saints edged the Texans with a game-winning field goal by Will Lutz. Deshaun Watson and the Texans offense scored a touchdown late to put them up. Drew Brees was able to manage a game-winning drive to set up Lutz’s field goal.
The Saints and the Texans have met five times, with New Orleans leading the series three to two. The preseason series between the two squads is even at five games a piece. The last preseason matchup was in the Superdome in 2017, where the Saints shut out the Texans, 13-0.
What to Expect From the Saints
Most of the Saints starters are not expected to see action in the black and gold ‘s first preseason game in Houston. It will be the first chance for rookies and those fighting for a roster spot to get a chance to see the field. Jameis Winston is expected to sit out of the game against Houston, since he suffered a minor foot injury this week.
Saints backup, Andy Dalton, will get the opportunity to start for New Orleans. From there, expect to see Ian Book and K.J. Costello to get some reps at the quarterback position. It is unlikely that New Orleans will run out Alvin Kamara, Cam Jordan, Demario Davis and Marshon Lattimore.
With Alvin Kamara sitting out it should open the door for Mark Ingram, Tony Jones Jr. and Abram Smith to see the field. It is not out of the realm of possibility that we see wide receivers, Jarvis Landry and Michael Thomas in the first preseason game of 2022. Chris Olave will get the bulk of the action in the wide receiving core.
On the defensive side, expect to see Marcus Maye and Tyrann Mathieu get the start at safety. Second-round draft pick, Alontae Taylor, should get plenty of action in the secondary, as head coach Dennis Allen has raved about what he has showcased to the coaching staff during practice:
“I really like (Taylor). I think he’s probably a little further ahead than what I anticipated when I got here. I’m excited about seeing what he can do.”
What to Expect From the Texans
Lovie Smith did confirm earlier this week that starting quarterback, Davis Mills, will see some action in Houston’s first preseason game. Texans’ backup quarterback, Kylen Allen, will miss the preseason opener after testing positive for COVID-19. That will open up the door for Jeff Driskel to see more action on the field with the absence of Allen on Saturday night.
Another notable player for Houston that will not see the field is first-round draft pick, Derek Stingley Jr. Also, first-round rookie guard Kenyon Green is expected to sit out, due to injury.
Saturday will provide opportunities to Marlon Mack who was picked up in the offseason from the Indianapolis Colts. Another player to watch out for Houston is wide receiver Nico Collins. He has all of the tools to have a breakout year with the Texans’ offense. Collins asserted himself as the WR2 on the Texans’ offense, with Brandin Cooks being the WR1 on the offense.
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