Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-11) vs New Orleans Saints (10-5)
Sunday December 29 Noon Kickoff WWL Radio
Series History: New Orleans leads the series 26-17
Last week’s results: Carolina beat New Orleans 17-13
What they are saying:
Saints Coach Sean Payton on Tampa LB Lavonte David
“He is playing outstanding. It is interesting, you go through the year and each week you put on cutups, you put on games of opponents you are playing and a week ago we saw an outstanding Mike linebacker. I would say in Lavonte’s case, he plays that Will if you will. He is very active. He is very athletic. He is a strong tackler. He is having a Pro Bowl season. The culmination of his tape demonstrates that. He is playing extremely well.”
Saints Defensive Coordinator Rob Ryan on dealing with two last minutes losses this season
“I think every coach has and if they say they haven’t, they are obviously lying. But it is something either you look first at yourself to improve and then you look at exactly what happened and then we’ve done that. We’ve addressed it numerous times. It is just such a hard thing to do because like you said, we were playing pretty well and that is a quarterback (Cam Newton) that made a couple of good plays and threw in pretty tight windows. Bottom line is it doesn’t matter. We have to get it done and we don’t want to make excuses for anything.”
Saints QB Drew Brees on the high number of close games in the NFL this season
“There’s been quite a few, especially as you look over the last four weeks. Then the fact that I know that a few years ago they started making the schedule changes to where you’re playing divisional or NFC opponents right there at the end so that those games become even more meaningful. The swings that can kind of occur in regards to a change in seeding and all of that stuff. Look at the NFC picture here going into the last week. It’s crazy how many things and scenarios can take place.”
OK folks, this is real simple. We all know what kind of mood we, the spectators, will be in depending on the outcome of the Falcons and Panthers Game. The 'Dome could become home to one of the best regular season games in the Saints history should our hated, arch-rival do us a solid and take care of Super Cam and the Cats from Carolina.
If that upset does occur, the Who Dat Nation will be more than amped up to see the Saints take on a Tampa Bay team that is not very good. With that said the Bucs are a legit defensive team with a stockpile of young, talented players.
Gerald McCoy is having an incredible season with six sacks from his interior D-Line spot, LB Lavonte David is fifth in the NFL in tackles and interceptions, and the play of Jonathan Banks and Mark Baron have all Bucs fans excited about the future of their defense. In fact, when you look around the NFC South, one could argue that the Bucs have the best young talent on that side of the football.
However, Tampa Bay is flat-out bad on offense. Although Rookie QB Mike Glennon has had his moments, Tampa can’t do anything on offense. Glennon has passed for 2,389 yards with 17 TD’s and 8 interceptions. But the overall numbers of the Bucs offense ranks them as one of the worst in the NFL!
Tampa is last in the league in passing yards and 22nd in rushing yards per game as well. The Bucs future looks to be pretty bright if they can decide if they are going to stay the course with current head coach Greg Schiano.
Tampa is 4-3 in their last seven games, and Tampa has lost four games this season by a total of 9 points. But folks, Tampa would need to be +2 in the turnover department, with one of those turnovers being a TD.
As they are on offense, I just can’t see Tampa staying with the Saints. Now, I am in no way, shape, or form saying that the Saints defense is not good, because they are very good. I’m trying to stress to you how bad the Bucs offense is!
Outside of a huge day from Glennon and several key turnovers including some for scores, the Saints defense should have no problem shutting down a bad Tampa Bay offense. And the pressure that the Saints offense can put on the Bucs defense should be more than enough, even against a good group of defenders, for the Saints to win this one by double-digits.
I rarely make a play on games that have double-digit spreads, but if you make a play on this one, I would have to take the Saints minus 13.
The Big Chief says New Orleans 27-Tampa Bay 10!