The New Orleans Saints shouldn’t want the No. 1 seed
Every Saints’ fan is rooting for them to win out and for their NFC opponents to lose, opening back up the No. 1 seed to the New Orleans Saints, but they shouldn’t want it.
There are multiple ways that if NFC teams win and lose this week that the New Orleans Saints can regain the No. 1 seed in the NFC side of the NFL playoffs.
While that sounds like a best-case scenario for the New Orleans Saints organization — IT’S NOT! There is a bigger possibility that the No. 2 seed has an easier road to the NFC Championship than the No. 1 seed has.
Let’s just look into the future for a moment. The seeding will likely be (if everyone wins out) No. 1 Seattle/San Francisco, No. 2 New Orleans Saints, No. 3 Green Bay Packers, No. 4 Dallas/Philadelphia, No. 5 San Francisco/Seattle, No. 6 Minnesota Vikings.
If that is the case, then either Seattle or San Francisco and New Orleans would get the bye weeks leaving Green Bay playing Minnesota and Dallas/Philadelphia playing Seattle/San Francisco. Why is this the best case scenario you ask?
Because that would mean that while New Orleans didn’t “win the NFC,” that we wouldn’t have to play Seattle or San Francisco (the two most dangerous NFC teams outside of the Saints) until the NFC Championship, and they would have to play themselves before they get there.
The 11-2 Niners and 10-3 Seahawks are definitely harder opponents then the 10-3 Packers. The Seahawks and Niners both rank top five in the NFL in total offense. The Niners also have a top-five defense to add to that offense. The Packers offense is ranked 23rd and their defense is ranked 22nd.
The Packers are easily the more favored opponent. It would be easier for us to face them then either the Seahawks or the Niners, which we would have to face if we were the No. 1 seed. The No. 2 seed also still gets a first-round bye in the playoffs.
The only downside to being the No. 2 overall seed is the lack of home-field advantage in the NFC Championship if the No. 1 seed were to make it as well.
So if it was up to you, would to try for the easier route to the Super Bowl and aim for the No. 2 seed or would you rather take the harder route but guarantee complete home-field advantage?