The 2023 NFL team schedules were finally released on Thursday, May 11.
The New Orleans Saints were blessed with a superbly simple schedule. Some analysts even referred to this schedule as the easiest in the league. Regardless, there are still some tough matchups ahead of Dennis Allen and the Saints, especially on the road. Here are the nine road games the Saints will play in 2023 ranked by difficulty.
#9 Indianapolis Colts - Week 8 (Oct. 29)
The Colts were abysmal in 2022. With a brand-new head coach and a questionable rookie quarterback, this game should be an easy road win. Perhaps Anthony Richardson catches fire and stuns the world, but I still doubt this game will be a challenge.
#8 Atlanta Falcons - Week 12 (Nov. 26)
The Saints are exactly .500 when playing Atlanta on the road (27-27) and this game will give New Orleans the favor. Atlanta has so many question marks coming into this season. Also, the Saints will be well-rested for Atlanta in Week 12 after their Week 11 bye.
#7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Week 17 (Dec. 31)
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are a shell of the team they were in 2022, and the Saints have made improvements in every area that cost them two games against them last year (besides coaching). This game follows a long week of rest after a TNF game versus Los Angeles in Week 16. If Tampa Bay plays as badly as they look on paper, this should be an important road win.
#6 Houston Texans - Week 6 (Oct. 15)
The Texans, now under the direction of quarterback CJ Stroud, will likely have their best offense since 2020. Overall, this team still has plenty of missing pieces and finished fourth in the AFC South (3-13-1) last season. This game will, however, be the second road game in a row for New Orleans following their week five game against New England.
#5 Carolina Panthers - Week 2 (Sept. 18)
Playing the Panthers on the road is never an easy win, but the Panthers don’t seem to be a huge challenge this year. Bryce Young could have an immediate impact; however, there are still plenty of holes in the offense, especially since Christian McCaffrey’s departure. The Carolina defense should be very vulnerable to a Carr-led passing attack, which pairs nicely with a healthy Michael Thomas and Chris Olave.
NEW: NFL strength of schedule for 2023!— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) April 13, 2023
5 easiest schedules:
5 hardest schedules:
1-32 with insight & analysis:https://t.co/3WVlscL9OF
#4 Green Bay Packers - Week 3 (Sept. 24)
Green Bay is a wild-card opponent in 2023 that will be led by a quarterback other than Aaron Rodgers for the first time in 15 years. Regardless of their offensive personnel, winning a road game in Lambeau is rarely quick and easy. Their defense is average but features several Pro Bowl candidates like Jaire Alexander and Kenny Clark. This should be a close victory for the Saints.
#3 Los Angeles Rams - Week 16 (Dec. 21) *Thursday Night Football
Yes, the injury-ridden Saints handled business against the Rams last season. However, this is still a very talented Rams team that won a Super Bowl less than two years ago. If healthy, this Rams team might be the best offense the Saints play this year. Their defense is far below average and should result in a high-scoring TNF bout.
#2 New England Patriots - Week 5 (Oct. 8)
Playing Bill Belichick on the road will always be tough. Mac Jones and the Patriots struggled to find an offensive rhythm last year, but their defense was impressive and will only be stronger after a defensive-heavy draft class. This Patriots team could give Carr hell and make it a very long afternoon for Pete Carmichael.
#1 Minnesota Vikings - Week 10 (Nov. 12)
Minnesota versus New Orleans is like a drunken street fight - ugly and bloody, but always entertaining. The Vikings have won three of the last five meetings against New Orleans, including a 28-25 victory in London last season. The Vikings recently cut Adam Thielen and might trade Dalvin Cook, but an offense with Justin Jefferson is immediately a threat to any team in the NFL. This should be a very entertaining game and a tough test for Dennis Allen.