New Orleans Saints: A seeding-changing Week 14 loss is deja vu
The New Orleans Saints need to get a first-round bye this season, but Week 14 yet again set them back and outside of first-round bye territory.
This officially sucks. The New Orleans Saints were absolutely thriving but, like last season, so were the Green Bay Packers.
Riding a nine-game win streak coming into the season, the Saints lost 24-21 to the 3-8-1 NFC East-playing Eagles. After 55 games of not allowing an opposing player to rush for over 100 yards, they allowed two this past Sunday as both Jalen Hurts and Miles Sanders topped 100 yards.
The Eagles were four yards away from 250 on the game. It was a complete relapse by the Saints’ dominant defense. That said, the Saints aren’t out of it yet.
There are still three weeks to be played, but their schedule gets drastically tougher than the Packers. Basically, the Saints have one tough game on their radar, against the reigning champions Kansas City Chiefs.
If New Orleans can win out, there is a chance they get that first-round bye, but it seems unlikely. With the playoff seeding changing this season to allow just one team a first-round bye per conference instead of two, the Saints’ chances slim even greater.
Last season, the team barely missed out on the second seed. They were doomed after a shootout Week 14 loss to the 49ers. All three teams at the top of the NFC last season were 13-3, but the Saints lost the tiebreaker to both the Niners and Packers.
Both teams may easily enter with three losses again, but this time around, there is not much that would change. A week 14 loss in both 2019 and 2020 would force the Saints to miss that bye and potentially play a lethal team in the Wild Card round.
Right now, it looks like it will be the Bucs, Vikings, or Cardinals they play. After the Cardinals won and the Vikings lost, it appears the Cards in a good place to make the final spot theirs, but they’ve dropped a plethora of winnable games.
These last three weeks will be highly important, not just for New Orleans, but for who their opponent in the first or second round could be as well.