Things were going well enough Thursday night for the New Orleans Saints, up until Andy Dalton threw not one, but two, pick-sixes heading into the half.
Dennis Allen might’ve missed those.
With the game tied and just past the two-minute warning of the first half, Dalton fired a pass that ricocheted off the hands off Marquez Callaway. Marco Wilson was there and picked it off, running it back 38 yards for the touchdown.
Right after getting the ball back, Dalton threw yet another pick-six, this time to Isaiah Simmons, who returned it 56 yards to the house.
In the three minutes going into the half, the Saints saw their 14-6 lead turn into a 28-14 deficit. It was an enormous gut-punch, and Allen had to go answer for it shortly thereafter in his halftime interview.
Asked what his message to Dalton was at the half, Allen started with “Nothing. Keep doing what you’re doing.”
You can imagine how that went over.
To be fair, the interception that went off Callaway’s hands wasn’t Dalton’s fault entirely, and he had occasional bright spots in the first half. They had five drives in the first two quarters, three ended in interceptions while the other two finished with touchdowns.
And, for those curious, this was the rest of Allen's answer about Dalton.
"One was an unfortunate play on a tipped ball that should have been caught," Allen said. "The other one (earlier in the game), down in the red area, we've got to avoid that one. And then obviously, there at the end of the first half, that last one was a killer. The game kind of changed there at the two-minute."
Certainly, Allen has to choose his words better. Even if he was just using a throwaway line to make the interview as brief as possible, the optics of such comments in that moment will never look good.