The NOLA Saints close out their regular season with a must-win game against the Atlanta Falcons, who would love nothing more than to keep their division rival out of the playoffs. That’s what’s at stake for the Saints, who have to win and hope for a 49ers loss in order to reach the postseason.
With such a big game on the horizon, I turned to Madden to see what the video game predicted in the Saints’ final game of the 2021 regular season. Will New Orleans finish the season with a winning record or a losing record?
Madden Simulation: NOLA Saints 14, Falcons 17
- Taysom Hill – 8-of-16, 97 yards, 2 INT
- Alvin Kamara – 16 carries, 83 yards, TD; 4 rec, 27 yards
- Marquez Callaway – 3 rec, 56 yards
- Demario Davis – 11 tackles
- Cameron Jordan – 2 sacks
- Marcus Williams – INT returned for TD
- Matt Ryan – 18-of-27, 202 yards, TD, INT
- Cordarrelle Patterson – 15 carries, 78 yards, TD
- Kyle Pitts – 5 rec, 65 yards, TD
- Dante Fowler Jr. – 8 tackles
- Grady Jarrett – Sack
- A.J. Terrell – INT
- Deion Jones – INT
The Falcons go right down the field and find the end zone on a Ryan touchdown pass to Pitts to put the bad guys up 7-0 minutes into the game. The Saints quickly go 3-and-out on their first offensive possession and Atlanta’s offense starts driving down the field to take a convincing two-touchdown lead.
Fortunately, Ryan’s pass sails directly into Williams’ arms and he takes it the other way for six points. Tie ball game.
From there, the teams trade punts for nearly the rest of the half until the Falcons are able to tack on a field goal right as the first half comes to a close.
The Saints start the second half on a promising note, as the offense has their best drive of the afternoon and gets into the red zone. Unfortunately, Hill throws a pick to Terrell, who returns it in Saints territory. Atlanta gets their second touchdown of the day, a run by Patterson, to take a commanding 17-7 lead.
While the NOLA defense is able to shut out the Falcons offense for the rest of the game, New Orleans can only add one more touchdown. As they’re driving to try and at least tie the game, Hill once again throws a costly pick and the Falcons win the game and keep their divisional foes out of the postseason. San Francisco will owe them some sort of delicacy for helping get them to the playoffs.
This result would be crushing for the Saints but the fact that they’re even still in the running to make the playoffs is absurd considering how their season has gone.