With both teams fighting to salvage the season, the New York Giants have a vital road test against the New Orleans Saints ON Sunday (12/17/23). Get Giants vs. Saints odds, picks and predictions below. Our best bet is Giants +6.
New York Giants vs. New Orleans Saints Prediction
The legend of Tommy DeVito continues to grow and grow as the Giants made it three straight wins after a thrilling finish against the Packers on Monday Night Football. “Tommy Cutlets” made a beautiful, clutch throw to set up a game winning field goal on a night on which his delightfully passionate and character-filled family and agent were front and center on the national stage. Suddenly, a Giants team that was viewed by metrics, fans and pundits as perhaps the league’s worst, is only a game away from a playoff spot, albeit with a challenging couple of games against the Eagles yet to play.
Just as the Giants have run their winning streak to three games, the Saints snapped a losing streak of the same length, and pulled into a three-way tie atop the NFC South as they comfortably dispatched an abjectly horrible Panthers team this weekend. New Orleans still has pivotal games coming up against the Buccaneers and Falcons, the two other teams in the race, but they lost their initial matchup against both division rivals. They can, at best, pull even in the head-to-head component of the tiebreaking process, so any NFC win could be the one that sets them apart.
As far as the matchup on paper, this is a pretty interesting one. The only thing that both EPA and DVOA think the Giants do well is defend the pass, as they rank around average in both metrics, which could serve to make the Saints pretty one-dimensional on offense. With Alvin Kamara nowhere near his best, this could be a serious issue for New Orleans, even against a bad Giants ground defense.
On the other side of the football, the Saints also defend the pass well, but the Giants’ ground game is in much better shape. Saquon Barkley is starting to look like his old self, and DeVito even chipped in 71 rushing yards on 10 carries against the Packers. The last few games have been magical for DeVito, but two have been home contests, and the other was against a completely deflated Washington team.
Over that span, he’s racked up a passer rating above 100 in each of the past three games, and that’s some spectacular production for an undrafted rookie who came into the year as a third-stringer. This trip to the Superdome will be by far his toughest test yet. It’s hard to know if he can steer New York to yet another big win, but the G-Men should be able to at least keep this one tight against a profoundly overrated New Orleans team, who are finally listed as third-favorites to win the division on most sportsbooks.
New York Giants vs. New Orleans Saints Prediction: Giants +6
New York Giants vs. New Orleans Saints Best Odds
The Saints are favored by nearly a full touchdown with the spread for this game sitting at -6 in their favor. They’re a comfortable -275 to win, with the underdog Giants at +220. The total is set at a trim 38 points, with -110 odds for both the over and under.
New York Giants vs. New Orleans Saints Key Injuries
Daniel Jones is of course still out, but with the rise of “Tommy Cutlets,” few Giants fans will complain. They could still use tackle Evan Neal back, he’s listed as questionable for this one, and New Orleans might also be short on offensive talent as skill players Kendre Miller and Rasheed Shaheed are both questionable as well.
New York Giants vs. New Orleans Saints Key Matchups
Derek Carr and the Saints air attack will need to have a solid game against a good Giants pass prevention unit to prevent the offense from being one-dimensional, while Saquon Barkley will shoulder the load once again for New York.
New Orleans Saints Passing Game vs. New York Giants Air Defense
The Saints have had a tough time finding an heir to Drew Brees, and while there were high expectations around the arrival of Derek Carr, things haven’t worked out perfectly as New Orleans is below-average by most passing metrics. While Chris Olave has been phenomenal once again in his second season, and Rashid Shaheed has taken a small step up as well, the return of Michael Thomas has not been as impactful as many had hoped. The offensive line has been an issue.
Carr and Co. will be attacking a Giants pass defense that has actually played pretty well of late, ranking right around average in the PFF grades for both coverage and pass rush. Kayvon Thibodeaux has had a great second season as he’s already up to 11.5 sacks on the year, while interior lineman Dexter Lawrence has been phenomenal with a pass rush grade of 92.9 from PFF. The secondary has been a bit spotty, but safety Xavier McKinney and linebacker Bobby Okereke have covered up a lot of their teammates’ flaws, as has some excellent coaching by Wink Martindale.
New York Giants Rushing Offense vs. New Orleans Saints Ground Defense
With a really troubling offensive line and no real second rusher other than whoever’s at quarterback, this New York ground attack goes through Saquon Barkley. He’s been solid this year, averaging 4.2 yards per carry behind that brutal line with seven big runs and 783 yards on the ground in 10 games.
The Saints run defense is a very interesting analytic unit. DVOA considers them to be one of the worst groups in the league, while they rank near the top by both EPA and success rate. Linebacker Demario Davis has been playing his best ball and could be absolutely key in slowing down Barkley, but PFF doesn’t give a lot of credit to anyone around him, nor does the metric of defensive adjusted line yards.