It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that these two teams don’t like each other very much. The last time the Panthers took a trip to the Big Easy the Saints ended a 8-game Panther win streak by defeating them 31-13. The loss left a sour taste in the mouths of the team after it was perceived that New Orleans was trying to run up the score when they continued to throw the ball deep in the 4th quarter despite being up 31-6.
“If you look back to the last game we played down there, they got a big lead on us and they were still dropping back and trying to throw the ball deep,” Thomas Davis said on Thursday as he prepared for Sunday’s game in New Orleans.
Davis still believed what New Orleans did in the fourth quarter was a “sign of disrespect.”
“As a player, you’ve got to go out and compete,’’ he said. “You can’t sit back and think that they’re going to feel sorry for us. We had three or four quarters to get it done the right way. If they get a big lead, shame on us.”
Coach Ron Rivera said he hasn’t reminded his players of the fourth quarter in New Orleans last season.
“I haven’t had to,” he said.
Rivera said he doesn’t particularly like it when a team keeps throwing late with a big lead, but noted that goes back to individual philosophies.
“It ticks me off, but hey … we’ve got to do something about it,” he said. “I’m not going to tell him how to run his football team and he’s not going to tell me how to run mine.”
“I mean, that speaks volumes, when you have a team down and it’s late in the fourth quarter and you’re still trying to throw the ball deep.”
There are a difference schools of thought on “running up the score.” Some believe that you should play hard until the clock reads 0.00 no matter what the score is. Others believe that if you’re up big in the fourth you should run the ball, eat up the clock and view aggressive pass plays as a sign of disrespect.
I can see both arguments, but there’s one thing that can prevent this whole conversation from happening…Winning.