The bad luck for the New Orleans Saints never lets up. First it was a rash of additional injuries. Then the Saints had to deal with another Covid-19 outbreak. Now, while the Saints have players like Alvin Kamara back from injury and Cam Jordan returning from the Covid restricted list, New Orleans is rewarded with a trip to Tampa to face Tom Brady and the Buccaneers.
According to DraftKings Sportsbook, the Saints are currently 11-point underdogs, despite the Saints having beaten Tampa earlier this season and in each of the past three meetings. Expectations are mixed regarding whether the Saints can even at least beat the spread.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have scored 30-plus points in four consecutive covers, and they’ve earned the chance to be an 11-point home favorite over the struggling New Orleans Saints Sunday night.
But that’s a lot of points considering the Saints beat the Bucs by multiple scores in October, and O’Donnell knows the backdoor could be wide open here as well.
“This is more of a gut call than anything,” O’Donnell said. “The Bucs have won four straight on the field and ATS, and all signs point to them being able to handle the middling Saints, especially at home and looking to avoid a season sweep. But I’ll roll the dice against this big spread and hope for a backdoor cover for two teams that know each other very well.”
New Orleans did easily dispose of the Jets on the road last week, but that doesn’t mean much. What’s more relevant is they’re a well-coached team that rarely gets crushed. They’ve lost one game by more than 11 points since Week 2.
Davenport: Tampa Bay
Gagnon: New Orleans
Kenyon: New Orleans
O’Donnell: New Orleans
Rogers: Tampa Bay
Sobleski: New Orleans
Score Prediction: Buccaneers 27, Saints 20
Pro Football Talk
MDS’s take: The Buccaneers’ defense played its worst game of the season on Halloween against the Saints. In the rematch, I think the Bucs dominate.
MDS’s pick: Buccaneers 28, Saints 7.
Florio’s take: The Bucs have consistently struggled with the Saints. They’ll stuggle again, but Tom Brady and the Bucs will finally get a regular-season win over New Orleans.
Florio’s pick: Buccaneers 27, Saints 20.
The Saints need this in the worst way for playoff survival. They are playing a second straight road game after beating the Jets on the road last week. The Bucs beat the Bills, but the defense was so-so in that one. The Saints beat Tampa Bay earlier this year with Trevor Siemian at quarterback. This will be Taysom Hill, but it won’t matter. The Bucs will win it, but it’s close.
Pick: Bucs 27, Saints 23
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