New Orleans at Atlanta Week 17 Betting Pick & Odds

Posted by Juan Carlos on December 29, 2016 in

The Atlanta Falcons (10-5) have put forth a tremendous season so far, but they still need one more win to lock up that #2 seed in the playoffs, which would give them a bye through the wild card round in the playoffs. The New Orleans Saints (7-8) show up riding a two-game winning streak, having knocked off the Arizona Cardinals and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Weeks 15 and 16. When these two teams met back in September, Atlanta won down in New Orleans, 45- 32. Take a look at our NFL odds for Week 17 and the NFL postseason.

New Orleans at Atlanta Week 17 Betting Pick & Odds

When: Sunday, January 1, 2017, 4:25pm ET
Where: Georgia Dome, Atlanta
Radio: New Orleans / Atlanta
Live Stream: NFL Live
NFL Odds: Atlanta (-6.5), O/U 56

Why should you bet on the Saints?

The Saints’ fortunes rise and fall with the performance of Drew Brees. He threw six interceptions combined in Weeks 13 and 14, as the team fell hard to the Lions and the Buccaneers. However, in the next two weeks, against the Cardinals and again against the Buccaneers, he threw five touchdown passes with nary a pick. On the season, he leads the league with 4,858 yards of passing, with 35 touchdowns against 14 picks. Tailback Mark Ingram brought the offense some needed balance last week, scoring twice and picking up 90 yards. The issue with New Orleans is their defense, which only allows about 100 yards per game to the run but allows 270 yards through the air each week, good for #30 in the NFL. If you like the Saints, then you think the Falcons will be resting on their laurels a bit after having sealed the division title last week, while the Saints will be looking to play the role of the spoiler and make Atlanta play a game during the wild card week.

Why should you put your money on the Falcons?

The Falcons’ head coach, Dan Quinn, was the original defensive coordinator in Seattle who assembled the Legion of Boom. It hasn’t really looked that way in Atlanta during his first season and a half at the helm, but his philosophy has taken off now, as the Falcons have permitted a combined 33 points in their last three contests. The first two games were against a couple of offensive laughers (San Francisco and Los Angeles), but they also held Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers in check last week. The Falcons got Julio Jones (toe) back from the infirmary, and while he only caught four balls against the Panthers, I see that number going up significantly against the Saints as he tries to shake off the rust and get ready for the postseason. Matt Ryan has just about as impressive a stat line as Drew Brees does for the year: 4,613 yards passing, 34 TD, 7 INT, and his quarterback rating (115.5) is about 12 points higher. This is a team that is peaking at just the right time.

Betting Pick and Final Score Prediction

This game could easily turn into a track meet with two of the game’s most talented quarterbacks driving the ball up and down the field. I like the Saints to come in motivated against their division rival, but I see the Falcons winning, 34-24. That over/under total (56) is about 8 points higher than what you get in most NFL games, but I would be tempted to take that “over” proposition as well.