The New Orleans Saints, fresh off of a bye week, march into Seattle for a Week 7 Monday Night Football matchup. This could be a very difficult road test for the Saints. The Seahawks are sitting at just 2-4 on the season, but at home this team should not be underestimated. The Saints have a bad habit of making mediocre quarterbacks look like Hall of Famers. This week though, the Saints look to be getting healthy and draw a banged up Seahawks team. The Saints are currently favored in this game but most fans are nervous. This game could go a long way in the NFC if the Saints can show up though. Here are some of the key matchups for the Saints Week 7 game against the Seattle Seahawks.
Jameis Winston vs The 12th Man
This week, the Saints offense will have to cope with one of the best homefield advantages in the entire NFL. This will be the Saints fourth road game of the year in the first six games. This will likely be the toughest road test so far though. In primetime, after an afternoon of pre-gaming, the Seahawks faithful will bring the noise on each and every down. This is already a tough team to face on the road, but put them in primetime and it will be even tougher for the Saints offense.
Jameis Winston will need to show that he has full command of the Saints offense against this crowd. So far, the playbook for the Saints has been limited. Winston and the rest of the offense will need to be on the same page to deal with the crowd noise. Coverage checks and being able to check the ball down and read hot routes will be key for Winston. So far this season, Winston has not checked the ball to the running backs enough. Winston has also not been great at making the quick read to the Saints receivers. Receivers might be at fault for not winning their matchups though. These will be key calls that Winston and the offense will need to make on the line to stand a chance in Seattle.
Marshon Lattimore vs D.K. Metcalf
Another week, another heavyweight-style fight for Marshon Lattimore. The last time Lattimore was on the field, he went 12 rounds with Terry McLaurin. Lattimore and the Saints held McLaurin to his lowest catch percentage on the season. McLaurin caught just four passes on 11 targets. This week, Lattimore will draw an even bigger assignment, literally. D.K. Metcalf is a 6’4, towering and powerful wide receiver for the Seahawks. The last time that these teams played, Metcalf was held to just two catches on six targets. If the Saints want a chance in Week 7, they will need a repeat of this performance.
Sean Payton vs Pete Carroll
Two of the longest tenured coaches in the league will face each another in a chess match this week. Sean Payton has shown himself to be an offensive mastermind in the NFL year after year. Unfortunately, this has been a down year for the Saints after the retirement of Drew Brees. Of course, this offense could get going at any point in time. Teams are likely fearful to be the team that the Saints explode against. If history shows anything though, this offense will wake up at some point. With the team’s health improving, and the bye week passing, it could be this week that Sean Payton’s offense shows up in a big way.
Likewise, Pete Carroll has shown himself to be a perennial leader of defenses in the NFL. The Seahawks are consistently in the top half of the league at defense. They have made many superstars on the defensive side of the ball in the Carroll years. Even in years, like this year, that the defense is middle of the road, they are still dangerous. At any point, this defense could click and make life difficult for opposing offenses. Carroll has been a stalwart with the Seahawks defense. If the Saints want to have offensive success, they will need to make sure not to let this be a “get right” game for the Seahawks defense.
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