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Key Matchups: Saints vs Falcons

The Black and Gold return after their bye week and will face their bitter rival on the road.

New Orleans Saints v Minnesota Vikings Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Coming off the bye week, the New Orleans Saints are looking to create some momentum as they try to win the NFC South and make it back to the Playoffs are the first time in three years.

First up on the schedule is the Atlanta Falcons, the team behind the Saints in the division standings at 4-6. Can the Black and Gold get back to winning ways off of the bye week and start the second half strong?

Here’s a look at some of the matchups I’m watching in tomorrow’s game:

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Minnesota Vikings Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Derek Carr battling injuries

The quarterback for the New Orleans Saints, signed last March for $150M, has dealt with a few injuries so far on the season. He suffered a sprained AC joint earlier in the season but didn’t miss any time. Then this past Sunday against Minnesota, he suffered another shoulder injury and a concussion. However, he’s off the injury report and looks to start on Sunday.

At what level will Carr be able to play? Can he play without limitations in the offense, or will he have to be eased into things? That will determine what the offensive game plan for Pete Carmichael is, which will be interesting to see.

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Indianapolis Colts Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

Saints receivers vs Falcons secondary

The Saints have a strong corps of receivers with players like Chris Olave and Mike Thomas leading the charge. However, due to the knee injury Thomas suffered in Minnesota, he is on Injured Reserve for at least the next four weeks. This creates another opportunity for Olave to cement himself as the top option in the offense, but it also presents the chance for younger players like Rashid Shaheed, AT Perry, and others to step up and have a bigger role in the offense. They start with a good Atlanta secondary that includes Jessie Bates, Jeff Okudh, and AJ Terrell, but the Saints are absolutely up to the task.

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