The New Orleans Saints aren't used to struggling under Sean Payton, but Thursday's performance at home in the 31-6 loss to the Buffalo Bills might have marked a new low for the Super Bowl-winning coach.
The Saints' offense generated just 190 total yards on the night. It marked the first time in the Payton era that New Orleans earned fewer than 200 yards in a home game -- Week 17, 2001 versus San Francisco. It also marked the fewest total yards in a prime-time home game since Week 12, 1980, versus the L.A. Rams (96 total yards in 27-7 loss).
The 190 total yards was the fourth-worst output overall for a Payton offense since he took over.
"It weighs on you, period," Payton said of the struggles, via Amie Just of The Times-Picayune. "It's something that obviously we've got to look closely at everything we're doing and who we're doing it with. It's not like new players are walking through the hallway."
The Saints' offense has been decimated by injury. Both running backs Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram sat out the Thanksgiving loss due to knee injuries. Quarterback Jameis Winston is on the shelf after suffering an ACL tear. And star wideout Michael Thomas won't play a snap this season.
New Orleans dropped its fourth straight game with Trevor Siemian under center. The QB completed 17 of 29 passes for 163 yards, a TD and an INT. Not a single Saints player generated more than 47 yards from scrimmage (Lil'Jordan Humphrey: three catches, 47 yards), and the ground game was held to just 44 total yards on 25 attempts (1.8 yards per carry).
"It sucks," center Erik McCoy said. "I can't really expound on it much. We got our butts beat today."
With little help from the offense, which generated just 64 total yards and four first downs in the first half, a good defense had no chance to slow the high-powered Bills offense in the romp.
Of the Saints' 190 total yards, 122 came in the fourth quarter when New Orleans trailed 24-0.