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Saints Touchdown Favorites at Falcons for Thursday

Saints are TNF Road Favorites at Atlanta - Bovada Sportsbook

The New Orleans Saints can position themselves to clinch the NFC South title in Week 13 with a win on Thursday night when they visit the Atlanta Falcons as 7-point favorites on the NFL betting odds.

New Orleans improved to 9-2 on the season with Sunday’s narrow 34-31 win over Carolina, and now holds a four-game lead over the second-place Panthers in the divisional standings going into Thursday night’s game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Now set as heavy -15000 favorites on the NFC South odds, the Saints can clinch a third straight divisional crown with a victory in Atlanta combined with a Panthers loss or tie in their Week 13 date with the visiting Washington Redskins. But despite teetering on the verge of a playoff berth, the Saints still have work to do before planning any celebrations.

Quarterback Drew Brees is showing no ill effects from the hand injury that sidelined him early this season, throwing for six total touchdowns over his past two outings, keeping the 40-year-old in the NFL MVP conversation despite missing five contests.

Brees twice marched New Orleans to double-digit leads in Sunday’s clash with Carolina. However, the Saints needed a field goal with time expiring to eke out the victory as heavy 10-point home chalk on the NFL lines, marking the sixth time this season that they have surrendered 25 or more points.

Despite those occasional defensive struggles, New Orleans has been a steady performer on the road during the current NFL football season, posting straight-up wins in four straight contests away from the Superdome. The Saints have also been a reliable bet against the NFL spread during that stretch, averaging 29 points per game while surrendering just 18.75 points per game, fueling a 4-0 ATS run.

 

Falcons Seek Rebound After Falling to the Bucs

 

The Falcons will be looking to rebound after seeing their lone two-game SU win streak of the season halted on Sunday by a 35-22 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as 3.5-point home chalk on the NFL odds. Atlanta has struggled to gain traction so far this season, opening their campaign on a dismal 1-7 SU run that featured four losses by wide double-digit margins.

An injury to veteran quarterback Matt Ryan further complicated matters. However, the 34-year-old’s return after missing the team’s 27-20 loss to Seattle in Week 8 sparked the team’s brief two-game SU win streak, highlighted by a stunning 26-9 victory in New Orleans as heavy 14-point underdogs three weeks ago.

Atlanta followed up with another outstanding defensive performance in a 29-3 win in Carolina in Week 11, but took a step back in its loss to the Buccaneers in the team’s fourth straight loss on home turf. In addition to struggling on defense during recent home dates, surrendering 30.75 points per game during their current four-game slide, the Falcons have failed to score more than 10 points in two of their past four home outings, extending a run for the UNDER in totals betting that now sits at 7-2 over their past nine home games.

The Falcons are also a dismal 1-11 SU in their past 12 games while pegged as home underdogs of seven or more points in NFL betting. However, recent home dates in which Atlanta has been listed as an underdog by a touchdown or more have tended to be low-scoring affairs, with the Falcons covering and the UNDER prevailing in each of their past four.

Overall, the Falcons have produced respectable results in recent home dates with New Orleans, going 4-3 SU and ATS in their past seven. Atlanta also eked out a win in their last home meeting with the Saints at positive odds, a 37-34 victory in September 2014, ending a 12-game SU losing streak against New Orleans while pegged as a home underdog.

 

*Odds as of November 25, 2019

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