Atlanta Falcons vs. New Orleans Saints Matchup Preview (11/7/21): Betting Odds, Depth Charts, Live Stream (Watch Online)
Atlanta Falcons vs. New Orleans Saints Matchup Preview (11/7/21)
In week 9, the Atlanta Falcons travel to New Orleans to play their bitter NFC South Division rival Saints for the first time this season. After a two-game winning streak, the Falcons are coming off a disappointing home loss to the Panthers on Sunday 19-17, managing only 213 yards of total offense with two turnovers. After seven games they’re one game under .500 at 3-4 (0-2 in division play). Playing at home in week 8, the Saints beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 36-27 in a tough NFC South battle improving their record to 5-2.
Atlanta Falcons vs. New Orleans Saints Betting Odds
New Orleans playing in their second division game in a row is a 5.5-point home favorite over Atlanta. The Falcons are 3-4 against the spread in 2021; 2-1 on the road. This season Atlanta is scoring 21.1 points per game and allowing 27.9 points per game. Including playoffs, the Saints have scored at least 30 points 123 times since 2006 when Sean Payton was named head coach. In those games New Orleans is 107-16. The Falcons must keep the Saints offense in check. New Orleans has scored in 311 straight games which is the fourth longest streak in NFL history.
While the Saints quarterback position will be in flux with the Jameis Winston injury, I trust that Sean Payton will have either Trevor Siemian or Taysom Hill ready to play.
My Prediction: Saints 27-13, Saints cover, but under 44 points.
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Date: 7th, November 2021
Time: 1:00 PM ET
Location: Mercedes Benz Stadium, New Orleans, NO
TV Coverage: FOX
Atlanta Falcons vs. New Orleans Saints Live Stream
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Atlanta Falcons Analysis
The leader of the Falcons offense, Matt Ryan struggled against the Panthers on Sunday, throwing for 146 yards, one touchdown, two interceptions with a passer rating of 67.8. In the previous four games, in which Atlanta was 3-1, the 2016 MVP threw for 1,204 yards, 10 touchdowns, an interception with a passer rating of 106.95. On the season the Falcons #2 has thrown for 1,814 yards while throwing 13 touchdowns with a 68.6 completion percentage. Ryan is still a quarterback who can make a big play, but at 36 might have lost a bit off his fastball.
Wide Receiver Calvin Ridley announced before Sunday’s game that he was stepping away from football to focus on his mental health. On the season Ridley has 31 catches for 281 yards and two touchdowns. He’s a talented player that Atlanta will miss, hopefully he’ll be back on the field feeling healthy this season.
With Ridley out, the Falcons will look to rookie tight end Kyle Pitts to have an even bigger role in the passing game. Unfortunately, in the loss to the Panthers, Pitts had 2 catches for 13 yards, not the type of production you would’ve expected after having 20 receptions for 332 yards and a touchdown in his last three games. The imposing fourth overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft will be looked upon to help Atlanta’s passing attack stretch the field, giving the Falcons running backs opportunities to help balance the offense.
After playing the last two season with the Chicago Bears as a kick returner and part-time running back/wide receiver, gaining 550 yards of total offense in both seasons combined, Cordarrelle Patterson might be the most surprising player of the season. Listed as a running back, Patterson has rushed for 268 yards on 64 carries, caught 32 passes for 333 yards and scored seven touchdowns (five receiving and two rushing). Patterson has 60 plus scrimmage yards in seven straight games, which is the longest streak by a Falcons running back since 2017. His five receiving touchdowns are tied for the most in Atlanta’s history by a running back in a season. Overall, the former Minnesota Vikings first round pick in 2013 has already scored seven touchdowns this season, only two off from his career-high of nine reached in 2013.
Atlanta Falcons Depth Chart
New Orleans Saints Analysis
The Saints starting quarterback Jameis Winston who was having a career revival under the tutelage of Sean Payton tore his ACL and damaged his MCL in the victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (and is out for the season). Winston will end the season with 1,170 passing yards and 14 touchdowns with a QBR of 64.1. Trevor Siemian came in the game after Winston’s injury, his first game action since September 16, 2019 (as a member of the New York Jets) and made the necessary plays helping the Saints to a nine-point victory over the Buccaneers. The Northwestern product outdueled Tom Brady, especially in the fourth quarter in the New Orleans victory, overall going 16-29 for 159 yards and a touchdown.
The question going into the game against Atlanta is who will play quarterback? Trevor Siemian is 13-12 overall as a starting quarterback mostly with the Denver Broncos, last winning a start in 2017. For his career Siemian has thrown for 5,848 yards, 31 touchdowns, 24 interceptions with a 59.1 completion percentage. The wild card of course is Taysom Hill who lost the battle for the starting quarterback job with Jameis Winston in the preseason. Hill has been out since week 5 with a concussion but could be available to play this week. Payton’s jack of all trades was 3-1 last year starting for the injured Drew Brees; throwing for 834 yards, rushing for 209 yards and accounting for eight touchdowns (four passing and four rushing).
One final note on the Saints quarterbacking situation; since 2019 Sean Payton has won games with Drew Brees, Teddy Bridgewater, Taysom Hill, Jameis Winston and Trevor Siemian
Multi-dimensional star running back Alvin Kamara will be looked upon to key the Saints offense with either Siemian or Hill under center for New Orleans. With his touchdown in the win over Tampa Bay, Kamara has scored 65 career touchdowns as a Saint, only trailing Marques Colston (72) for most in franchise history. On the season, the Saints #41 has rushed for 480 yards, but also has 256 yards receiving out of the backfield and has scored six total touchdowns (two rushing and four receiving). Mark Ingram was acquired last week from the Texans, where he was leading the team in rushing with 294 yards, the hope is to give New Orleans more power in running game. Call it a hunch and based on Payton’s creativity as a play caller, could we see Kamara throw a pass against Atlanta in a red zone situation?
Looked on as an offensive team, the Saints defense have been leading the team this season. Their rushing defense has been fabulous in 2021, ranked second in the NFL allowing 74.9 yards per game. New Orleans has allowed only one running back to eclipse 100 yards in a game since 2018, which is the fewest in the NFL. The Saints have had at least three takeaways in a game 14 times since 2018; Cornerback P.J. Williams had the game-sealing pick-6 in the win over Tampa Bay in week 8. With the Saints ability to create turnovers, the fantastic play of linebacker Demario Davis (53 total tackles, three sacks and nine tackles for loss in 2021) and the return of Marcus Davenport from injury, the New Orleans defense will continue to strike fear in its opponents.
New Orleans Saints Depth Chart
Atlanta Falcons vs. New Orleans Saints Daily Fantasy Picks
The Falcons player I’d recommend for your roster is kicker Younghoe Koo. Last season, Koo led the NFL in points with 144. Since joining Atlanta in 2019, he has made a least two field goals in 22 games. For the season he’s 14 for 14 in extra point attempts and has made 12 field goals this year totaling 50 points. In his 34 career games he has scored 296 points. Koo could be the difference in winning or losing your fantasy matchup this week.
Wide receiver Marquez Callaway who was targeted 27 times and spent time on injured reserve last season was the Saints breakout star of the preseason. Wearing #1, Callaway has filled in admirably helping New Orleans fill the void left at receiver due to the ankle/quad injury of star receiver Michael Thomas. Over the last three games he has been targeted 20 times, catching 10 of those passes while adding two touchdowns. Averaging 14.5 yards a reception, he’s a player that could fill a Flex spot on your roster if you need a receiver with big play ability.
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