The New Orleans Saints have put up a lot of points on offense in recent weeks, which is encouraging. What is discouraging is just how many points their defense has given up. Once again, they made the opposing quarterback look like an all-world sensation who will not likely see that level of success again this season. Next up for the Saints is a trip to the Nation's Capital to face the Washington Redskins. Washington, much like New Orleans, has been wildly inconsistent this season, and despite their 3-5 record, they will be difficult to contend with this week.
The Saints will need to keep up the scoring on offense, and pray to make a few stops on defense while falling into a turnover or two as well. Neither victory or defeat this Sunday in Washington would be surprising, but it's hard not to overstate the importance of the Saints picking up a win here, to get to .500 going into their Week 11 bye. Hope for the Saints 2015 season began to surge over the course of their triumphant three-game winning streak, but that was a severe hit last week, we will now see if that hope holds true or rings false after this Sunday.
Last week I went 8-5
Thursday, November 12th - Thursday Night Football
The Jets defense will focus on Buffalo's rushing attack, forcing them to rely on their thoroughly unreliable passing game. Rex Ryan has a disappointing return to MetLife Stadium, as the Jets win 20-13.
Sunday, November 15th - Early Games
This is Green Bay's "get right" game and they'll do just that at home against lowly Detroit. Packers win 26-14.
The bottom truly falls out for Dallas, with this loss in Tampa. Bucs win 23-16.
Hide the children, this one's gonna get ugly, fast. In the rout of the week, Carolina will absolutely steamroll the lowly Titans in Tennessee. Panthers win 38-6.
Bears(2-5) at Rams(4-4)
St. Louis has the most horrific passing offense we've seen this season, and it just won't matter as long as they have Todd Gurley in the backfield. Rams win 24-22.
Philly will carry their momentum from last week's win, as they face a Miami team with as much negative momentum as any team in the league right now. Eagles win 35-16.
Crippling injuries on offense will doom Pittsburgh in this game. Cleveland isn't any good, but they'll be good enough in the passing game to stun the injured Steelers this week. Browns win 29-20.
There is a reason both of these teams are 2-6, and it will show in this game. Baltimore's defense will get just enough done to get the win at home. Ravens win 13-12.
Saints(4-5) at Redskins(3-5)
Last week, when the Saints lost at home to the "lowly" Titans, a great deal of hope in the team was lost. In reality though, the outcome shouldn't have been that surprising. Even though I picked the Saints to win that game, I stressed how easily it could go the other way, due to some very real intangibles. Those being: renewed effort for a new head coach, Payton's Saints' struggles against rookie QB's over the last five seasons, and most importantly, the fact that Tennessee had the best defense the Saints had seen since Week 1 in Arizona.
Well, all of those factors came back to haunt them in that game. Thankfully, those factors don't exist in this game. Although Tennessee's offense was bad going into that game, mostly under a different QB and coach, Washington's is a step worse in each category, with their current regime. Washington's defense has also dropped off dramatically since the first two weeks of the season, proving themselves to be quite adept at giving up loads of yards, and more importantly, points, on a weekly basis.
The Saints will take advantage of a bad defense, like they did on their three-game winning streak, and attempt to take advantage of an offense even worse than the one that stunned their horrific defense last week, albeit without the "advantage" of a rookie starting QB. It'll be closer than it needs to be, but the Saints will renew a bit of hope going into their well-timed bye week, thanks to a late field goal by former Washington kicker Kai Forbath. Saints win 34-31.
Sunday, November 15th - Late Games
Oakland's offense has been on fire since coming out of their bye. In a scenario we are all too familiar with, they just need a little support from their dreadful defense. They'll put up points early and often, forcing Minnesota to abandon their fantastic running game for their atrocious passing game. Advantage Oakland. Raiders win 35-25.
In each of these Eli Manning vs Tom Brady matchups, we've been treated to some absolutely classic games, and even though the Pats are much better than the Giants this year, we should expect another classic. This will come down to the final possessions. Patriots win a thriller, 29-24.
Denver will rebound from last week's stunning loss with a win over a Kansas City team they've owned in recent years. Broncos win 24-10.
Sunday Night Football
Both teams realize just how pivotal this game is. With a win, Arizona has a clear path to the NFC West title and a first round bye. With a loss, they allow Seattle within a game of the division lead and may be in for the divisional fight of their lives. The Seahawks have been the best in the west for a while now, but this is Arizona's time. They are the most balanced team in the league and have no fear going into Seattle, whose homefield advantage has gone the way of the Superdome advantage as well. Cardinals win 17-10.
Monday, November 16th - Monday Night Football
Houston's one-dimensional offense stands no chance against the red-hot Bengals. Cincy wins 21-15.
There you have it, Week 10 is upon us, and the Saints need to rebound this week to keep any hope for this season intact. Leave us your picks, comments, and insight below.