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Saints' defense struggling after first 2 weeks

3 years ago September 17, 2012 Sep 17, 2012 Monday, September 17 2012 Monday, September 17, 2012 9:08:42 AM CDT in Daily Headlines - Sports

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - As long as Drew Brees stays healthy, the New Orleans Saints' offense is going to be just fine.

The defense? Now that's a concern.

The Saints got pushed around for the second straight week, allowing 463 total yards in a 35-27 loss to the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. New Orleans fell to 0-2 for the first time since 2007 and finds itself alone in the NFC South cellar.

They've allowed 922 yards and 75 points in two games against young quarterbacks Cam Newton and Robert Griffin III.

"We're just not playing as good as we want to yet," Saints cornerback Malcolm Jenkins said. "We had high expectations and we've worked hard and prepared hard. We've got to jell and continue to do the things we need to do to get better. We just have to continue to chip away at this thing."

The Saints will welcome an opportunity to face a team that doesn't run the zone-read option quite as much next Sunday. They face another 0-2 team when they meet Matt Cassel and the Kansas City Chiefs.

"If you look at our defense, and you look at the two offenses we've played, we've played the most unconventional offenses in the National Football League," interim coach Aaron Kromer said. "So do we have to do better against those styles of offenses? Yeah, we do. One thing we need to get settled in on is on that style. But we've played two good offenses, and we just need to keep working at it and plugging away."

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