Take the Saints and the Over against the Falcons

On Sunday, the 8-8 New Orleans Saints (-4.5) will enter Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta to face the 7-9 Falcons at 4:25 pm. The downtrodden Falcons have missed the playoffs each of the last four years, including 2021, and have already dropped a contest to the Saints this season.

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The Saints are 4.5-point favorites, so should New Orleans be able to cover the spread on Sunday? The answer is yes, and let us explore why.

After bouncing back from their midseason five-game losing streak, the Saints are winners of three of their last four games. New Orleans has scored just 30 points combined in their last three contests, but Sean Payton’s defense has been otherworldly recently.

Meanwhile, it was been a long time since 2016 Offensive Player of the Year Matt Ryan was leading the Falcons to Super Bowl LI. Atlanta has the 10th-best record in the NFC and was eliminated with the team’s loss to the Buffalo Bills on January 2.

How the Saints will Cover the Spread

The Saints have a top-10 defense in the NFL this year, but their offense has been very hard to predict. In the post-Drew Brees era, New Orleans’ offense cannot seem to get out of its own way in the second half of 2021.

Thus far this season, New Orleans has yet to hit 300 passing yards in a game. Additionally, with the exception of some spectacular runs by Taysom Hill and Alvin Kamara, the second-half offense has struggled for the most part. However, all they need in this contest is a 24-17 game, and the Saints will have covered and hit the over.

On the other side of the football, Matt Ryan’s offensive line has not done him any favors. As a result, he has been sacked the fourth-most in the league this season. Ryan also has 10 fumbles, which ranks sixth-most in the NFL, so the Saints will have ample opportunities to turn takeaways into points.

How the Over will Hit for This Game

The over/under for this contest is a measly 40 points, which is understandable because the Saints’ Taysom Hill-led offense has been anemic recently. The Saints have hit the under in each of their last six games, but that streak should be ending on Sunday.

This game is a big must-win for New Orleans, and the Saints will have to score enough points in order to win. It is unlikely they will be delivering another shutout.

Both the Saints and Falcons have enough firepower to score enough points, and four of the last five Atlanta games have finished with at least 44 points.

Although 28 points is the most combined points scored in a Saints game since December 19, New Orleans’ offense has the potential to explode in this game and help hit the over.