With the NFC schedule release looming, all eyes turn to the upcoming opponents. Of course, the Saints will play the divisional opponents at home and on the road. Outside of these games though, the New Orleans Saints will have some very intriguing matchups in the upcoming season. Old rivalries will be renewed and playoff seedings will be decided by these games. With the NFC being wide open this season, most games could be worth the watch. These are the New Orleans Saints best non-divisional games for the upcoming 2023 NFL Season.
Best non-divisional Saints games in the 2023 season
Unfortunately for the Saints, this upcoming season will have more road games than home games. With the 17-game schedule, this will rotate each season. This year, the Saints draw the NFC North and AFC South as well as every other third place finisher in the NFC. This leads to road games against the Green Bay Packers, Los Angeles Rams, Minnesota Vikings from the NFC. From the AFC South, the Saints will go on the road to play the Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts. The 17th game of the season added another cross-conference competitor who also finished third. The New England Patriots is the last game but hopefully it takes place early in the year to avoid the Foxborough weather. The Saints have had success against the Patriots in recent history, so this is not likely the best game.
The best away non-divisional game this year is against the hated Minnesota Vikings. For obvious purposes, the Vikings rivalry has exploded in recent years. Vikings fans still feel like the Saints should not have won their NFC Championship game years ago. Most recently, the Vikings have been on the opposite end of a stunning upset that will go unnamed. Outside of these games that cause pain for both franchises, this game could easily have playoff implications. Both the NFC North and NFC South are wide open after losing some key players this off-season. If this game takes place late in the season, it is likely to be a playoff indicator.
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Best non-divisional home games
The best home games in this upcoming season are likely from teams on the rise. In what will be an intriguing matchup with many stories, the Saints and Detroit Lions will play in the Superdome this season. This game could very well be a playoff seeding game as well. The Lions finished last year strong and will be looking for a playoff berth this year. A matchup in the Dome could have playoff seeding implications as well as be a checkup to see which of these two teams are playoff ready. Jamaal Williams will be looking to run wild against his former team. If Michael Thomas is back, look for him to find ways to match up against C.J. Gardner-Johnson in what will be fantastic television. This game might be one of the best home games of the season.
An AFC opponent could help the Saints understand where they stack up overall as well. From the AFC South, the Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans will be in New Orleans this season. The Titans have been perennial winners in the AFC even though last year was a down season. This is opposite to the Jaguars, who have grown from one win in 2020 to nine last season behind Trevor Lawrence. It will be interesting to see which AFC South team emerges as this year’s contender, but both of these games should help the Saints see where they measure up against the AFC this season.
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