This Sunday two of the NFC’s best teams will face off as the New Orleans Saints will host the San Francisco 49ers. Kickoff is set for 1:00 EST at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome and will be televised locally on FOX.
Oddsmakers opened up this game at New Orleans -3.5, but early money on the 49ers has pushed this past the key number of 3 and down to the Saints -2.5. The total opened at 45 and is down to 44.5 or 44 depending on where you shop.
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Saints vs 49ers Vegas Odds & Game Preview
San Francisco 49ers (10-2 SU, 7-4-1 ATS)
The 49ers come into this one off a gut-wrenching 17-20 loss at Baltimore in what was easily the most hyped game of the week. San Francisco had their chances to take control of that game, but just had too many miscues. They had a field goal blocked, had to settle for a field goal inside the red zone and turned it over on downs in Ravens territory.
What really had to make that loss sting is the fact that Baltimore went a mere 34-yards on 12-plays and ate up the final 6 minutes and 28 seconds to set up a game-winning field goal as time expired. San Francisco did as good a job as anyone of slowing down Lamar Jackson and that high-powered Ravens offense. Jackson did next to nothing throwing the ball, as he was just 14 of 23 for 105 yards, but he did rush for 101 yards and a score on 16 carries.
That loss combined with the Seahawks win over the Vikings on Monday Night Football has the 49ers in a crazy position. San Francisco is tied with a number of teams for the best record in the league at 10-2, but one of those is Seattle, who they lost to, which means if the season ended today the 49ers would be the top Wild Card team.
New Orleans Saints (10-2 SU, 8-4 ATS)
The Saints come into this one off a 26-18 win over the Falcons in the finale of the three games played on Thanksgiving Day. New Orleans wound up covering as a 7-point favorite, but Saints backers had to be sweating at the end of that one, which is pretty crazy given it was 26-9 with less than 5 minutes to play.
Atlanta scored what most assumed was a garbage touchdown with 3:01 left to play to make make 26-15. Atlanta recovered an onside kick and to the dismay of anyone who had the Falcons, they kicked a field goal on 1st & 10 from the 25 with 1:56 to play to make it a 8-point game. They then somehow got another successful onside kick, only to give it up on downs.
Either way the Saints got their revenge from a shocking 26-9 home loss to the Falcons in Week 10. It could have also been a lot more lopsided, as New Orleans settled for 4 field goals. Witht he win the Saints clinched the NFC South title, making their primary focus now being the No.1 seed.
This will be the first meeting between these two since they played during the regular-season back in 2016. New Orleans won that contest 41-23 as a 5-point road favorite.
Free Pick & Odds Predictions: Saints -2.5
My early lean here would be to lay the points with New Orleans at home against the 49ers. I not only think this is a great price to back the Saints at home, but I also think the spot heavily favors New Orleans.
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The 49ers are a great team and I just feel like whenever an elite team suffers a loss the public’s first thought is they can’t lose two in a row. Sometimes that’s a valid theory, but I don’t think it applies here. It’s hard enough playing back-to-back road games in the NFL. The 49ers must try and do so after playing in the biggest game of the week and in one of the toughest places in the NFL to get a win in a game of this magnitude.
Not only that, but New Orleans gets the luxury of having an extra 3 days to prepare for this game because they were one of the six teams to take the field on Thanksgiving Day. That extra rest is huge, especially this time of the year.
A lot of attention has been given to the 49ers defense and rightfully so, but I think given the spot and just how talented Drew Brees is, especially with his ability to get rid of the ball quickly, this is one of those games where their defense could struggle. Since Sean Payton took over as head coach the Saints are 9-2 ATS vs teams who allow 17 or fewer points/game.
When people talk about New Orleans it’s usually centered around Brees and the offense, but they got a top notch defense this year. They 10th in the NFL, giving up just 323.5 ypg. The big stat however is that they own the league’s No. 1 ranked run defense. I think we have seen some limitations to Jimmy G and the 49ers passing game here of late and I just think they are going to have a hard time moving the ball with how much they figure to struggle to run the ball.
It’s also worth pointing out that when New Orleans has been matched up against the leagues best, they have been an absolute money maker. Saints are 9-1 ATS under Payton in games against an elite team that is outscoring opponents by 10+ points/game. Not only have they covered just about every game, they are winning by an average of 10 ppg. Give me New Orleans -2.5!