There’s nothing more dangerous than a team that has nothing to lose. Week 18 presents a must-win game for the New Orleans Saints, but their opponents could put up a good fight.
The Saints will take on the Atlanta Falcons, who have a 7-9 record and have no chance of making it to the postseason.
Its one of the less intricate playoff scenarios out there, and you have to feel pretty good about the chances of the Rams beating the 49ers.
The immediate task at hand, though, requires a victory against their division rivals, who the Saints lost to back in early November.
Could Matt Ryan and Atlanta sweep the Saints in 2021?
Short answer: Yes.
New Orleans Saints cannot underestimate Atlanta Falcons in Week 18 matchup
The Falcons have emerged as a surprisingly entertaining team with Ryan under center and dynamos like Cordarrelle Patterson controlling the run game.
It could be argued that Atlanta have more consistent and efficient receivers than New Orleans in Russell Gage and rookie Kyle Pitts, two players that have enjoyed very productive seasons so far.
It’ll likely take more than field goals to beat the Falcons. Taysom Hill has somehow scraped by with a 6-2 overall record as starting quarterback, and Payton will yet again rely on Hill’s dual-threat abilities along with Alvin Kamara and the slowly emerging Marquez Callaway.
In their last meeting, the Saints fell early and eventually lost by two in a gut-wrenchingly close game. Trevor Siemian started under center and finished with 249 yards and two touchdowns, but he failed to muster enough energy and confidence in the offense to complete the comeback.
If this game comes down the fourth quarter and we had to choose between Ryan and Hill to lead a game-winning drive, we’d honestly go for Ryan. He’s a better and more experienced passer, and if he starts cooking with Gage or Pitts, the Saints defense will be stretched thin.
Far too many games this season have been won by the Saints’ D, and it’s about time Hill and the offense started picking up the slack. Remember, anything can happen in Week 18.