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Saints 2022 Top 10 Regular Season Matchups - Number 1

We meet again, my dear enemy.

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Los Angeles Rams
New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara (41) runs the ball against the defense of Los Angeles Rams Los Angeles Rams strong safety John Johnson (43) during the first half at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The 2021-22 NFL regular season in is the books, with the Los Angeles Rams having claimed the Super Bowl LVI trophy. Unfortunately for the New Orleans Saints, the season ended on January 9, 2022, without a playoff berth, and our eyes now turn to the 2022-23 NFL season.

The Saints’ opponents for next regular season as well as the games’ venues have now all been disclosed, with the only missing information being the dates and times of the games. So, we now know that the Saints’ 2022 home opponents will, as expected, include their division rivals (Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers). In addition, New Orleans will face the Los Angeles Rams, Seattle Seahawks, Cincinnati Bengals, Baltimore Ravens, Las Vegas Raiders and Minnesota Vikings. If you counted with me, yes, the Saints have nine home games in 2022. It remains to be seen which one of these games will be played on a neutral site (New Orleans is expected to play a game in England in the 2022 season).

As we are in this new 17-game format in the NFL regular season, the Saints will play eight games on the road in 2022, their three divisional opponents as is customary, plus the Arizona Cardinals, Cleveland Browns, Pittsburgh Steelers, San Francisco 49ers and Philadelphia Eagles.

In this top 10, we will focus on the appeal of the matchup. With most NFL squads far from being finalized for 2022, it would be difficult to assess all individual matchups at this point. However, we look at factors such as: teams that the Saints do not play very often, or teams that have prominent players with ties to either the Saints or the state of Louisiana.


At Number 10 in our matchups countdown was the game between the Saints and the Cleveland Browns, which you can read about here.


At Number 9 in our matchups countdown was the game between the Saints and the Arizona Cardinals, which you can read about here.


At Number 8 in our matchups countdown was the game between the Saints and the Seattle Seahawks, which you can read about here.


At Number 7 in our matchups countdown was the game between the Saints and the San Francisco 49ers, which you can read about here.


At Number 6 in our matchups countdown was the game between the Saints and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which you can read about here.


At Number 5 in our matchups countdown was the game between the Saints and the Atlanta Falcons, which you can read about here.


At Number 4 in our matchups countdown was the game between the Saints and the Baltimore Ravens, which you can read about here.


At Number 3 in our matchups countdown was the game between the Saints and the Philadelphia Eagles, which you can read about here.


At Number 2 in our matchups countdown was the game between the Saints and the Cincinnati Bengals, which you can read about here.


Today we focus on:

Number 1: The Lost Angeles Rams (Home)

The defending Super Bowl champions Rams will be strutting their stuff in the Caesars Super dome next season. Yes, it will be the first time in NOLA for the Rams since the infamous no-call heard around the world. But for the Saints, beyond the whole revenge narrative that the media and the TV broadcast teams will try to push, this game will be a measuring stick in an NFC contest that will undoubtedly be significant for a potential playoff berth.

The Rams are the quintessential “Super Team,” a concept that the 2021 Tampa Bay Buccaneers turn into championship success with the addition of quarterback Tom Brady, running back Leonard Fournette, among other pieces like defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh or wide receiver Antonio Brown. Tampa, in the span of one offseason, went from last to second to the Saints in the NFC South, to division winners this past year, with a Super Bowl trophy to show for it.

Los Angeles followed suit. The Rams brought in quarterback Matthew Stafford from Detroit; he joined an already talented team that got even more loaded when it added players like wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. mid-season. A year prior, LA had also signed highly touted cornerback Jalen Ramsey from the Jaguars, and in making all these additions, the Rams mortgaged their ability to select in the first round of future NFL drafts. They do not care, because that approach, like the Bucs a year before them, brought them a Lombardi trophy.

The Saints will be facing a slightly different Rams team next season, as defending Super bowl champions are often decimated by free agency and other teams eager to add Super Bowl champions to their squad (the 2021-22 Tampa Bay Bucs, who returned twenty-two starters from their championship-winning team were an exception). Right tackle Andrew Whitworth has already announced that he will be retiring. Odell Beckham may not have recovered from his second torn ACL just yet, and other key players might be missing as well.

What the Saints are sure to face however, are quarterback Matthew Stafford, defensive tackle and strongest football player on earth Aaron Donald and head coach Sean McVay. Those three men are the pillars upon which the Rams’ new winning culture has been built.

For Dennis Allen and New Orleans, they will be facing a team that owns a 7-4 record over the Saints since the ASP era started in 2006 (yes, I classify the Saints as BSP and ASP: Before Sean Payton and After Sean Payton). The Rams also won the last meeting at the site, that overtime win we would all like to forget. For New Orleans however, it is not about forgetting, but remembering that they too aspire to go back to the Super Bowl and win it. and to be the best, you have to beat the best, so what better way for this Saints team to start the rediscovery of its winning ways by beating the biggest bully on the block? I cannot think of anything better.


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