The New Orleans Saints are a dome team and won’t have to play outdoors again this season right through the Super Bowl should they get there.
NFL Point Spread and Betting Analysis
We don’t want to proclaim the Saints will win the Super Bowl, although they were our preseason pick, but let’s look back to the 2009 season. New Orleans finished 13-3 that year as the NFC’s top seed, led the NFL in point differential and was sixth in rushing. The Saints’ three losses were to Dallas, Tampa Bay and Carolina.
This season, New Orleans finished 13-3 as the NFC’s top seed, led the NFL in point differential and was sixth in rushing. The Saints’ three losses were to Dallas, Tampa Bay and Carolina. The Saints haven’t been past the Divisional Round since that Super Bowl team, losing three times. Last year, the Saints were also NFC South champions but had to play on Wild-Card Weekend. They beat Carolina but then lost on the Minneapolis Miracle in the Divisional Round at the Vikings.
Of course, the Eagles are defending Super Bowl champions, but they won their two NFC playoff games at home a season ago. Philadelphia visited New Orleans in Week 11 this season and was crushed 48-7. That left the Eagles at 4-6 and with very remote playoff hopes.
The Eagles weren’t very gracious guests in Chicago on Sunday. Philadelphia misses the playoffs if the Bears don’t win Week 17 at Minnesota, but the Bears did win and the Eagles made the most of their new life with a 16-15 upset of the No. 3 Bears. Nick Foles hit midseason trade acquisition Golden Tate on a 2-yard TD pass with 56 seconds left for the winning score.
Chicago’s Cody Parkey did hit a 43-yard field goal in the final seconds, but Eagles coach Doug Pederson had called timeout prior to the snap. On his next try, Parkey hit both the left upright and then the crossbar. Philadelphia is trying to become the first repeat Super Bowl champion since the 2004 Patriots and the first No. 6 seed to win it all since Green Bay in the 2010 season.
New Orleans Saints
Drew Brees will hold every NFL regular-season passing record by the time he retired. At age 39, Brees had arguably his best season, setting career highs and leading the NFL in completion percentage (74.4, league record) and quarterback rating (115.7). Brees slumped a bit late in the year and sat out Week 17, which probably cost him a chance to win his first-ever NFL MVP Award.
Arguably no team has a better set of offensive skill position triplets than the Saints with Brees, RB Alvin Kamara (1,592 yards from scrimmage, 18 total TDs) and WR Michael Thomas (NFL-best 125 catches for 1,405 yards, nine TDs). The New Orleans defence started the season slowly but was among the NFL’s best from Week 10 on – not counting a meaningless Week 17 loss.