The New Orleans Saints face the Cincinnati Bengals in the Superdome this week, as both teams enter the game with equal, and equally disappointing, 2-3 records. The reigning AFC Champions have yet to reach their high expectations so far this season, and while the expectations for New Orleans were not as high, they are facing similar struggles, despite both teams having the talent to be better than their records reflect.
The biggest stories in this one are the Cincy players returning to New Orleans. These include former Saints Trey Hendrickson, Vonn Bell, and (lol) Eli Apple, as well as former LSU Tigers Ja’Marr Chase, and of course, Joe Burrow. The former Saints and Bayou Bengals turned Cincy Bengals will certainly have more than enough motivation to play where they all (well, except for Apple) had fond memories and huge games. It’s going to take that intangible something special to win this pivotal game. Which team will have the “Eye of the Tiger”? Hopefully that team is the actual home team... the Saints.
Now let’s take a look at this and all of the matchups in Week 6 — for all the odds, visit DraftKings Sportsbook.
Last week I went 9-7
I told you so: Saints over Seahawks!
What do I know: Lions over Patriots?
Thursday, October 13th - Thursday Night Football
Commanders(1-4) at Bears(2-3)
No surprises here, Chicago’s rushing attack will gash Washington’s horrid defense. Carson Wentz will make mistakes against the stout Chicago defense. Chicago wins 24-15.
Sunday, October 16th - Early Games
49ers(3-2) at Falcons(2-3)
They may not have the shiny record to prove it yet, but next to Philly, San Francisco is the NFC’s next-best team. They will continue to prove it, with a dominant defensive effort in Atlanta. San Francisco wins 30-17.
Patriots(2-3) at Browns(2-3)
Bill Belichick outcoaches Cleveland through beating them at their own game. New England wins 36-10.
Jets(3-2) at Packers(3-2)
This game will be a close one, but Aaron Rodgers finds a way against the Jets defense in the end. Green Bay wins 28-21.
Jaguars(2-3) at Colts(2-2-1)
Indy’s offense will continue to struggle, while Jacksonville’s offense rebounds from a week ago. Jacksonville wins 25-6.
Vikings(4-1) at Dolphins(3-2)
Without Tua, the wheels are starting to fall off for Miami. Kirk Cousins and his weapons will have a big day through the air in this one. Minnesota wins 38-16.
Ravens(3-2) at Giants(4-1)
This will be a great defensive matchup between two of the better teams this season. It will be the talent of Lamar Jackson that makes all the difference in this close contest. Baltimore wins 27-20.
Buccaneers(3-2) at Steelers(1-4)
Tom Brady and the Tampa pass-catchers will be the difference in this matchup. Tampa Bay wins 30-24.
Bengals(2-3) at Saints(2-3)
Cincinnati has struggled offensively so far this season, despite an embarrassment of riches at skill positions. The Saints have been ravaged by injuries on offense keeping all their top talent from playing on the field at the same time. Reinforcements look to be returning for the Saints on offense, but a key component will be missing on defense, in Marshon Lattimore. With Joe Burrow and Ja’Marr Chase entering the Superdome, the timing of the loss of Lattimore couldn't be worse for the Saints. With the losses in the Saints secondary, Cincy may be getting the break they've looked for all season.
This game may be heralded as a return game for former Saints and LSU legends, but this is also a game where Andy Dalton gets a crack at his former team, the franchise that drafted him and one he made Pro Bowls as the quarterback of. For all of the stories Cincy has coming into the game, the Dalton story is the one that is being most overlooked, and it will be an important one.
This game will be close throughout. The Saints defense, despite missing Lattimore, is still a formidable unit, especially when overlooked against talent like Cincy comes into the game with. Trey Hendirckson will certainly be motivated to wreck the Saints plans on offense, looking to make the Saints regret not re-signing him (which they must do already). All the motivation for the Saints is there as well, but unfortunately it just won't be enough to get the win in the end. Cincinnati wins 24-21.
Sunday, October 16th - Late Games
Panthers(1-4) at Rams(2-3)
Despite having arguably the best defender in football, in Aaron Donald, and a a talented defensive roster, the Rams have the lowest-ranked defense in the NFL, what they need now is a cupcake to face, to get back on track. Enter Carolina. Los Angeles wins 20-17.
Cardinals(2-3) at Seahawks(2-3)
This one will be close all the way through, but it will be the Arizona defense that makes a huge stop in the end to hold on to victory. Arizona wins 27-26.
Bills(4-1) at Chiefs(4-1) - Game of the Week
This game will certainly live up to the “AFC Game of the Year” billing that is being placed on it. This one won't have the insane ending that January’s Divisional Playoff had, but it will be the best game we’ll see this week for certain. Since this one isn't a playoff game, it will be Buffalo that comes out on top... this time. Buffalo wins 36-33.
Sunday Night Football
Cowboys(4-1) at Eagles(5-0)
Many think this will be a great game, but it won't. Philadelphia will stun Dallas by outclassing them on every level. The biggest surprise will be Jalen Hurts having a huge game through the air. Philly claims supremacy in the NFC East with a blowout win here. Philadelphia wins 46-24.
Monday, October 17th - Monday Night Football
Broncos(2-3) at Chargers(3-2)
This will be a monster game for Justin Herbert, as he slices and dices the Denver defense. Los Angeles wins 31-13.
Check out the odds for this week’s games courtesy of our friends at DraftKings Sportsbook.
That’s how I see Week 6 shaping up. Leave us your picks, comments, and insight below!