2012 Season NFL Football Past Picks
November 11, 2012
Atlanta at New Orleans
Sunday 11/11 01:00 PM Eastern
3 units on Atlanta PICK () (risk 3 to return 3) RESULT: LOSS
The Atlanta Falcons have run the table through the first half of the season at 8-0 and remain the only unbeaten team in the NFL. There are still a lot of non-believers out there, which is why you see them barely favored here against a 3-5 team. This Falcons team reminds me a lot of the Packers from last season, but with a better running game behind Michael Turner, and a better defense. Matt Ryan won't live up to the numbers Aaron Rodgers compiled a year ago. He's got 17 TDs and 6 INTs at 7.9 yards per completion. But, the bottom line is that he has been lethal and does what it takes to win. Ryan has all kinds of weapons to exploit a very weak Saints' secondary. New Orleans has come back after an 0-4 start to win three of their last four, and suddenly the bandwagon is filling up again. Not so fast my friends! All the wins came at the expense of teams at .500 or lower. The Saints' offense is all about Drew Brees and they throw the ball just short of 70% of the time while the defense has allowed 24 points or more in seven of their eight games. This defense has allowed 28.6 points per game and 472 yards per game. Even during their winning run, the Saints have allowed 25 points per game. And, that would be a lot higher if the anemic Eagles could get more than 6 points out of five trips to the redzone last week. Atlanta should be well over that mark here. I just don't see the Saints getting enough stops vs. Atlanta and that will be the difference here. Atlanta can close a game out and the Saints, if they have a late lead, might not be able to. Atlanta is now 19-7-1 ATS in their last 27 against a losing team. And, in the Mike Smith era, this team comes up big in expected close games. In games with a line of +3 to -3, the Falcons under Smith are 23-12 ATS. Take Atlanta.