Saints’ Most Difficult Matchups on 2021 Schedule: No. 1 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
While it pains me to do this, facts are facts. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are the defending Super Bowl champions and that makes them the Saints’ toughest matchup in 2021. New Orleans handled the Bucs with ease during the regular season, even flat out embarrassing them on Sunday Night Football, but when push came to shove in the playoffs, the Bucs took “Third time’s a charm” to a whole new level and crushed the Saints.
The Bucs then went on to win the Super Bowl and Saints fans are tired of hearing about it. Be that as it may, the two will face each other twice in 2021, and don’t be shocked if the Saints’ away game at Tampa is the NFL season opener. Neither team has a daunting schedule and it makes all the sense in the world to put the two best teams in the division against each other in the season opener. It’d also be Jameis Winston’s first NFL start since the Buccaneers cut ties with him, adding fuel to the fire.
The good news for New Orleans is that they had no problem with Tampa Bay during the course of the regular season. The bad news is that the Buccaneers won when it mattered the most and also managed to re-sign all of their players from a season ago, meaning they’ll be a Super Bowl contender again this year.
Hopefully, the Saints can put the Bucs in their place and if they do have to play them in the season opener, it’d be nice to ruin their banner night for them.
These five teams are the toughest opponents on the Saints’ 2021 schedule but they’ll also play the Dolphins, who could be a tough out as well. I didn’t include them because they weren’t as intimidating as these other five teams but perhaps if Rodgers is traded or retires, the Dolphins could take their place on this list instead.