Skip to main content

NOTEBOOK: Quin vs. Brees a good matchup to watch

Glover Quin has been known to bait a quarterback or two into an interception. Some of the game's best signal callers have fallen victim to it over the years.

Earlier this year he did it to reigning MVP Matt Ryan. Saints quarterback Drew Brees is also on that list.

In Detroit's 24-23 come-from-behind win over the Saints at Ford Field back in 2014, Quin and fellow safety James Ihedigbo made the veteran move to switch their roles in Cover 1 late in the game to try and confuse Brees. It led to a Quin interception.

Ihedigbo, the strong safety, who usually played as the up man in Cover 1, dropped deep in coverage, while Quin, the free safety, played up, putting him in perfect position to step in front of a Brees' pass he returned to the New Orleans 14-yard line that set up a game-winning touchdown pass by Matthew Stafford a few plays later.

"(The coaches) made a call and normally in that call Dig (Ihedigbo) is the low guy and I'm the high guy," Quin said after that game in 2014. "We've been doing that all season. Drew (Brees) is a smart guy and we gave him his respect. We figured he would know that so we switched it up a little bit.

"I was able to hang a little high and make it look like what (Brees) was expecting and then I dropped down and he threw it right to me."

Therein lies Quin's genius when it comes to his ability to recognize offensive concepts as they develop, and put himself into position to make plays from there. Over the years he's been terrific at it.  

He has 23 career interceptions and 18 since joining the Lions in 2013. He has 15 since the start of the 2014 season, which is the second most in the NFL over that span.

"I think anytime you have a veteran safety it helps you with the quarterback manipulation, because they know how to study the quarterback, and it always becomes a cat and mouse game between two great players and that's always interesting to watch," Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin said this week.

"I'm sure (Drew) Brees will win his share, and I'm sure GQ will win his share. It's just at the end of the day, we hope we win more than they do. But, it's good to have that."

Brees and the Saints are the only team left in the NFL without a turnover. In fact, since the addition of the forward pass in 1933, just three teams have finished the first four games of the season without a turnover – the 1995 St. Louis Rams, the 2013 Tennessee Titans and the 2017 Saints, according to The Times-Picayune.

Both the Rams and Titans saw their streaks end in game five.

Can Quin bait Brees into his first turnover of the season? It's the game within the game to watch Sunday afternoon.


The Saints have steadily been increasing rookie running back Alvin Kamara's role in their offense each and every week. His emergence made the trade of veteran running back Adrian Peterson to the Cardinals this week possible.

Kamara is averaging 5.5 yards per carry, and is coming off a 10-catch performance last week vs. Miami in which he caught all 10 of his targets for 71 yards and a touchdown.

Brees hasn't had a receiving threat like Kamara coming out of the backfield since Darren Sproles in 2013.

"He'll run routes, he just doesn't run one route. He'll run multiple routes," Austin said this week.

"He'll come back in the backfield. He'll run the ball in terms of he'll run stretches, screen to him. They do a lot of different things with him, and he's having a heck of a start to his career."

Austin said Kamara has some Theo Riddick in him, which is pretty high praise, considering no running back has caught more passes than Riddick (151) since 2015.


The Saints rank 29th defensively, but their previous two games have been a dramatic improvement over their first two. In losses to Minnesota and New England in Weeks 1 and 2, the Saints allowed a total 1,025 combined yards and 65 points.

Over their last two games, they've combined to give up only 475 yards and 13 points. They've also chipped in eight sacks and four interceptions in wins over Carolina and Miami.

"Yeah, they're playing faster," Lions offensive coordinator Jim Bob Cooter said this week. "The guys are playing more confidently. They spoke in the media a little bit about simplifying, whatever they did there.

"I just see a group that's playing confident, playing fast, and really kind of I think executing what their probably coordinator wants them to do. So, they seem to be playing faster, running around, making plays, making life tough on offenses."


Detroit's captains for this week's contest in New Orleans are: Ameer Abdullah (offense), Ziggy Ansah (defense) and Don Carey (special teams).

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content