Rob Ryan vows Saints’ defense ‘will be great’

Following last season’s regular season opener, when the Saints defeated the Falcons, Rob Ryan famously bought rounds of drinks for patrons in a New Orleans bar.

This year, he likely drank to help him forget.

Last Sunday, the Falcons, en route to a 37-34 victory, tore Ryan’s defense to shreds in a game the outspoken defensive coordinator deemed a “stinker.”

“Look, that was a stinker for all of us, but nobody has to hit the panic button around here,” Ryan said, via “We’re gonna work hard. We’re not used to losing, and we’re not gonna get used to it.”

“You watch. I guarantee we will be better.”

It couldn’t get much worse.

The Saints allowed 568 total yards, including 445 passing yards, a franchise-record. They were extraordinarily bad with the fundamentals, missing 16 tackles, according to Pro Football Focus.

Still, Ryan isn’t worried.

“I know we’re a better tackling team than that. I know we are going to play great and will be great,” he said.

New Orleans will aim to get back on track in Week 2 against the Browns, who will be without starting running back Ben Tate and, potentially, tight end Jordan Cameron.

Zack Kelberman
An award-winning sportswriter, reporter and blogger, Zack currently serves as the Miami Dolphins live correspondent and Team Stream curator for Bleacher Report. He's also a freelance NFL writer and the founder/editor-in-chief of Helmet2Helmet. His work has appeared on media outlets such as ESPN, Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports,,, and Zack can be reached on Twitter (@ZackKelberman) or via email (