Saints Falcons Spread Betting Line and MNF Prediction Week 16

What a southern treat for NFL fans during this holiday season, this game will be sure to entertain. The Falcons have built up a margin for error, but this will be a measuring stick game for both clubs, regardless. Will Matt Ryan ever lose at home again? Will the Saints be able to withstand a big dose of the run game after the Ravens gouged them last week? A Falcons sweep would cap a tremendous regular season. The (12-2) Atlanta Falcons will be going for the season sweep against last years Superbowl champs in the (10-4) New Orleans Saints, kickoff slated for 8:30 PM EST.

The Saints have won six of their past seven games and can clinch a playoff berth with a victory (or a Tampa Bay loss or tie on Sunday). A win would also keep New Orleans in the hunt for its second consecutive division title. New Orleans’ Drew Brees leads the NFC in attempts (571), completions (391), yards (4,122) and touchdowns (31). He has recorded at least 4,000 yards in each of his five years with the Saints and joined Peyton Manning as the only quarterbacks in NFL history with five consecutive 4,000-yard seasons. The Saints offense currently ranks 26th running the ball. They are running for an average of 96 yards per game and have scored just 8 times on the ground this year. They might hit a wall this weekend when they face Atlanta’s 12th ranked run defense, which concedes 106 yards per game on average and has conceded just 8 rushing touchdowns this season. Since joining New Orleans in 2006, Brees has thrown for 22,420 yards and 153 touchdowns. He is the only quarterback in league annals to pass for at least 20,000 yards and 150 touchdowns in a player’s first five seasons with a new team. RB Reggie Bush aims for 5th meeting in row with TD. Has 5 TDs (4 rec., 1 rush) in past 4 vs. Atlanta. RB Pierre Thomas has 5 TDs (3 rush, 2 rec.) in past 4 on MNF. The Saints run defense has not gotten much better since then. They currently rank 19th in this category, allowing 117 yards per game and conceding 13 rushing touchdowns this season. The Falcons offense is powerful running the ball, averaging 123 yards per game with 13 rushing touchdowns this season, enough to rank 7th in this category.

Atlanta has won eight consecutive games and owns the best record in the conference at 12-2. The Falcons, who clinched a playoff berth last week with a win at Seattle, lead the Saints by two games and can clinch the NFC South division and secure homefield advantage throughout the playoffs with a victory. In his career, Ryan is 19-1 (.950) at home as the starting quarterback, including 15 consecutive victories. He is tied with Danny White for the best winning percentage in a player’s first 20 starts at home among quarterbacks who began their careers in the Super Bowl era (since 1966). With 32 career wins as a starter, Ryan can tie Pro Football Hall of Famer Dan Marino (33) for the most victories by a quarterback in his first three seasons since at least the 1970 merger. In the past 8 weeks, RB Michael Turner has rushed for 790 yards (98.8 per game) & 10 TDs. He aims for his 5th in a row against the Saints with a rushing TD. Since 2008, he has 38 rushing TDs, which is 2nd most in the NFL. WR Roddy White leads the NFL with 106 receptions & needs 6 to pass Terance Mathis (111 in 1994) for team record. The Falcons’ offense currently ranks 14th in the passing game, averaging 227 yards per game and scoring 25 touchdowns through the air on 2010. They will face a stout New Orleans pass defense that ranks 4th overall, allowing just 195 passing yards per game while surrendering just 10 passing touchdowns this season. Atlanta has shown some vulnerability defending the pass this year. They currently rank 20th in this category and have allowed 21 touchdowns to opposing receivers this season. They will certainly be challenged by Drew Brees and the Saints 3rd ranked passing attack, which averages 282 yards per game and it’s tied with the Patriots for most passing touchdowns this year with 31.

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Saints vs Falcons Spread, Line and Betting Odds:

Spread:

New Orleans Saints +2.5
@ Atlanta Falcons -2.5

Game Total:

Over (-110)
49
Under (-110)

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Saints vs Falcons Betting Predictions for Week 16:

Spread Prediction (TOP PLAY) – The Falcons have surged this year under the direction of quarterback Matt Ryan. Once touted as an average pivot, Matt Ryan has risen to the occasion this year and has propelled his club to tops in the NFC. He has led several final minute comebacks and he is distributing the ball all over the field. His favorite target, WR Roddy White, might be the best flanker in the game right now and defenses are sending double coverage his way. Atlanta is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games and is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games in the hostile confines of the Georgia Dome. The Saints have had a shaky, but solid year thus far and will most likely enter the postseason as a wildcard. QB Drew Brees has suffered from an ailing shoulder all year and his offense hasn’t been able to “shoulder” the production is he leaving behind. New Orleans is 3-8 ATS in its last 11 games on the road and 7-15 ATS in its last 22 games. The Saints have also had a recent history of ineptness’ against the men from Georgia, New Orleans is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Atlanta. I believe we see a tight game until the very end and it may be a final minute drive by Matt Ryan and the Falcons that seals this game. We will consider the Falcons earning the sweep on Monday night.

Top Play Prediction = Falcons -2.5

Game Total Prediction –Every stat in the world leans towards the OVER in this game, but I’m not buying into them. With so much riding on this game and the Saints wanting to avenge their early season loss to this club, I believe we are in store for a struggle. Both clubs posses potentially top 5 defenses and in the clutch they seem to always come through. Halfbacks Reggie Bush and Michael Turner should receive a healthy dose of the ball on Monday night, which will eat up the clock. The Falcons will not want to engage in a shootout with the Saints so they will look to maintain ball possession and long drives. The turnover bug has stung the Saints this season and they are 6th in the league in turnovers in the Redzone. Take a look at the UNDER on Monday night as I expect a very close, scripted match.

Prediction = UNDER 49 Total Points.

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