Saints cornerback Delvin Breaux credits work with boxing gloves for improved performance against Tampa Bay _lowres

Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Doug Martin (22) carries past New Orleans Saints cornerback Delvin Breaux (40) in the second half of an NFL football game in New Orleans, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2015. (AP Photo/Jonathan Bachman)


Delvin Breaux, making his second start as a Saints corner, went viral for making one mishap in the Saints’ 26-19 loss to Tampa Bay: losing a deep ball from Jameis Winston to Louis Murphy in the lights and unable to find it as Murphy made the catch.

In reality, Breaux turned in a standout game for a Saints secondary that held Mike Evans without a catch.

“Delvin Breaux played one of his better games,” Payton said in his weekly WWL radio appearance.

Breaux’s chief area of improvement? Penalties. Flagged four times against Arizona, including twice on one play, Breaux spent the week practicing with boxing gloves on his hands, a tactic the Saints have used before to help teach their return men how to field a punt.

“I knew I had to do some adjusting,” Breaux said. “During the week, I focused on not getting penalties. And with those pads they make you wear in practice, you can’t hold anybody anyway.”

Breaux also stayed in close communication with the referees, constantly checking to see if he was flirting with a flag.

“They told me to check with them if I wasn’t sure, and they’d say, ‘Good job,’ after the play,” Breaux said. “I thought I did OK in coverage, but in the NFL, you learn it’s a lot different when the bullets starting flying for real.”

And the throw to Murphy that went viral?

Payton isn’t putting the lion’s share of the blame for that play on Breaux.

“Before he gets his eyes up, we have a quarterback who was flushed out of the pocket and had seven to eight seconds there before he launches that ball, but we have to be in better position,” Payton said. “He was in a position to be able to recover, but when the play got extended it makes it more challenging on the back end. We’re going to defend scrambles, but when you have an inordinate amount of time it becomes real difficult.”