A win, but Payton says Saints “struggled”

BALTIMORE, MD - AUGUST 13: A New Orleans Saints helmet sits on the turf before the start of the Saints and Baltimore Ravens preseason game at M&T Bank Stadium on August 13, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

It was a win, but for Saints head coach Sean Payton, one that was unimpressive.

The Saints scored the last 14 points in a 24-20 win Thursday night over the Jaguars in Jacksonville in the preseason opener for both clubs.

“Early in the game, offensively and defensively, we struggled,” said Payton. “Honestly, I don’t know when we forced them to punt.”

The Saints did not force a Jacksonville punt until 19 seconds left in the second quarter.

The Saints winning score, a 4 yard touchdown run by Jonathan Williams, came with 2:16 to play in the game. It was set up by a turnover. Jay Elliott forced a fumble by Jacksonville quarterback Tanner Lee. It was recovered by Taylor Stallworth.

Saints backup quarterback Taysom Hill played well. He completed 8 of 9 passes for 72 yards. He also ran 7 times for 52 yards, including a three yard touchdown run with 6:33 to play in the game.

Drew Brees did not play in the game. Tom Savage started at quarterback for the Saints.

The Saints two presumed starters at defensive end, Cam Jordan, and first round pick Marcus Davenport did not play.

The Saints host the Arizona Cardinals next Friday night at the Superdome.