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NFC South after Week 3: The plot thickens

It was a near-perfect set of results for the Saints in Week 3.

New Orleans Saints v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images

If only Cincinnati could manage a comeback to beat the Panthers, it would have been an absolutely perfect week for the Saints.

In any event, the NFC South got a little tighter in Week 3. Here’s how it all happened.

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Coming into Week 3, the Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints were set to face off in a divisional battle of 1-1 teams in Atlanta. The Carolina Panthers, also 1-1, faced the first of Carolina’s AFC North opponents, the Cincinnati Bengals. The division-leading 2-0 Buccaneers hosted a different AFC North team, the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday Night Football.

Carolina went on to win against the Bengals by a final score of 31-21 to improve to 2-1. FitzMagic finally ended (or did it?) in Tampa Bay on Monday night, with the Steelers beating the Buccaneers 30-27, to drop to 2-1. The New Orleans Saints, down 7 points late in the fourth quarter, came back to beat the Falcons behind two rushing touchdowns (what?) from Drew Brees, 43-37. The win brought the Saints to 2-1, and dropped the Falcons to fourth place in the division with a record of 1-2.

New Orleans Saints v New York Giants Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images

In Week 4, the Carolina Panthers are taking their early Bye week, so Carolina gets to sit back and watch the TV Sunday. It is Atlanta’s turn to face the 2-1 Cincinnati Bengals and Tampa Bay gets the 2-1 Chicago Bears. Both of those games are at noon on Sunday. The Saints have their first real test at defending the run in Saquon Barkley and the 1-2 New York Giants Sunday afternoon, meaning the Saints are the only NFC South team to face a team with a losing record.

The Buccaneers and Falcons taking back-to-back losses in Week 4 is definitely a plausible scenario.

But first things first: #BeattheGiants