Sunday night we get to watch two sure-thing first ballot Hall of Famers fight it out for a chance to play next week in the NFC Championship game. Drew Brees and the Saints will need to beat Tom and Tampa Bay for the 3rd time this season. Let’s take a look at what each team needs to comtinue their quest for a Super Bowl ring.
What the Bucs need to win:
Tom Brady has struggled against the Saints this season, to say the least. Brady only threw 12 interceptions this season, but 5 of those came in the two matchups against New Orleans. Most of the struggles can be related to pressure on Brady. The offensive line will need to do much better than allow the 6 sacks that they’ve let up in the last two meetings. Tom will have slot WR (and awful person) Antonio Brown for the first time against this tough secondary. Brown will need to fight off the press coverage and give Brady an option over the top.
What the Saints need to win:
Last week was the first time the New Orleans offense was fully healthy since week 9. Having Brees, Kamara, and Thomas on the field at the same time allows the Saints to finally open the playbook all the way. On defense, CB Lattimore will need to continue to be physical against Mlike Evans. Evans and Brown can become extremely frustrated if they can’t get off the line and don’t get early targets.
21 times have division rivals met for the third time in the playoffs, 14 of those times the team went on to win the 3rd and most important matchup. I believe that stat will ring true once more. Alvin Kamara is going to be tough for the Bucs to matchup agaisnt on receptions out of the backfield. I think as soon as Tampa pulls up the DB’s to cover Kamara, Brees will go over the top to Thomas. My only hope is the referees don’t become a factor in this one.....
Saints win 34-24