Atlanta Falcons at New Orleans Saints Betting Preview

Sunday, November 22, 2020, Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana, 1 p.m. ET

Atlanta Falcons at New Orleans Saints Betting Preview: Falcons (+4.5/-105), Saints (-4.5/-115)

Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons don’t have to face Drew Brees, but they weren’t fazed the last time they faced him in the Superdome. It was Brees’ second game back from a five-game absence due to thumb surgery and the Falcons ended the Saints’ six-game winning streak with a dominant 26-9 triumph last season.

Atlanta is familiar with both Jameis Winston, from his time in Tampa Bay, and Taysom Hill, who both figure to see action in place of Brees, who is sidelined indefinitely by rib and lung injuries.

The Falcons are 3-6, but they are 2-1 after winning their last two under interim head coach Raheem Morris going into their bye last week. Their passing game is still one of the most dangerous in the NFL with Matt Ryan throwing to Julio Jones, though Calvin Ridley’s availability is uncertain due to a foot injury.

In his last four games, Ryan has completed 72.8 percent for an average of 318.5 yards with eight touchdowns and two interceptions. Todd Gurley has nine rushing touchdowns but is averaging just 3.7 yards per attempt. Since Morris took over, Atlanta is allowing the third-fewest rushing yards per game (86.5) and the fifth-lowest third-down conversion percentage (32.6).

New Orleans Saints

The Saints (7-2) went 5-0 without Brees last season, but that was with Teddy Bridgewater at quarterback. Winston completed 6 of 10 passes for 63 yards while playing most of the second half in Brees’ absence after the injury against San Francisco last week. Hill ran eight times for 45 yards and lost a fumble.

Whoever plays quarterback will rely heavily on running back Alvin Kamara, who is No. 2 in NFL in yards from scrimmage, and All-Pro wideout Michael Thomas. Kamara is averaging 4.7 yards per rush, has caught 67 passes and has scored touchdowns on seven rushes and four receptions. Thomas, who is recovering from ankle and hamstring injuries that sidelined him for more than a month, had 13 catches for 152 yards in the loss to the Falcons last season. New Orleans won the rematch 26-16 on Thanksgiving to clinch its third consecutive NFC South title.

The Saints have won six straight and the defense has been exceptional in the last two games. They have seven takeaways (two by special teams) in the last two games and rank second in run defense.

Falcons at Saints Betting Pick for Week 11

Kamara is having an MVP-caliber season and the defense is getting healthier and better, which will help mitigate Brees’ absence. Kicker Wil Lutz, punter Thomas Morstead and All-Pro return specialist Deonte Harris will help put New Orleans over the top.

Falcons at Saints Betting Pick:

Saints 26, Falcons 24

Falcons at Saints Best Bet for Week 11

Brees’ absence will be felt most in the red zone, where touchdowns will be less likely than field goals. Both teams have been playing their best defense of the season of late, so don’t look for a shootout.

Falcons at Saints Best Bet:

UNDER 50.5 total points (-110)

Reports: Jameis Winston To Sign With The Saints

Former Buccaneers’ QB expected to sign a one-year deal with New Orleans

After an off-season of QBs moving all over the place, it appears that Jameis Winston will be continuing his NFL career in the NFC South. Earlier today, sources told Yahoo Sports the former number one overall draft pick is finalizing a deal with the New Orleans Saints. The NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport is reporting that the deal between Winston and New Orleans is for only one year. The details of Winston’s salary for this upcoming season have not yet been released.

Previously, Jameis Winston had been serving as Quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers since the start of the 2015 season. After Tampa Bay signed QB Tom Brady this off-season, the Bucs decided to let Winston’s contract expire, allowing him to become a free agent. After more than a month of trades and acquisitions, Winston finally has a new home.

Sources told Yahoo Sports that Winston’s role in the Saints’ offense is not yet clear. Furthermore, the sources are saying that Winston is not guaranteed the back-up job behind starting QB Drew Brees. It appears that Winston will have to compete with QB Taysom Hill for the number two spot on the Quarterback depth chart. New Orleans also selected Mississippi State Quarterback Tommy Stevens in a later round of this year’s NFL Draft, so Winston will likely have to compete against Stevens as well.

Jameis Winston has played in the NFL for five seasons after being taken with the number one overall pick in the 2015 Draft by Tampa Bay. Over the last five years, Winston has completed 61.3% of his passes for 19737 Passing Yards and 121 Passing Touchdowns. Winston earned Pro Bowl honors in 2015 and also led the NFL in passing yards last season as well as interceptions thrown. He turned 26 this past January.