This Sunday the New Orleans Saints will host the Oakland Raider. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:00 EST at the Superdome and will be televised locally on FOX. Oddsmakers have the Saints as a 1-point home favorite and the total set at 51 points. Get more Week 1 NFL betting spreads and game previews by clicking the link.
Raiders vs Saints Game Betting Preview
Oakland hasn’t finished with a winning record since losing Super Bowl XXXVII. However, there’s a ton of optimism going into 2016 after last year’s 7-9 campaign. The Raiders have some nice young pieces on offense and beefed up the defense in the offseason. Now it’s just a matter of whether or not they can live up to hype.
The Saints were a trendy pick to win the NFC South last year. That thought was quickly out the window after a 1-4 start. New Orleans ended up rallying to go 7-9, but will 2016 be any different. The Saints will once again be near the top of the league on offense. The big questions is can the defense do enough to get them back into the postseason.
Free Vegas Odds Pick & Prediction: Over 51
I just don’t see a ton of value on either side against the spread. Oakland is the better team, but New Orleans can hang with anyone at home. I think the real value here is with the total and these two combining for more than 51 points.
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I think both of these teams are going to have no problem moving the football. Oakland is poised for a breakout season on offense in 2016. Starting quarterback Derek Carr is now in his 3rd season and he’s got weapons to throw to. Most notably second year wide out Amari Cooper. Oakland also did a nice job improving the offensive line in front of him.
At the same time, the Raiders will be facing one of the leagues worst defenses in the Saints. New Orleans ranked 31st in yards allowed (413.4 ypg) and dead last in scoring (29.8 ppg). Their 1st round pick in Sheldon Rankins is on IR, as is promising 2nd year linebacker Hau’oli Kikaha. They also released their best cover corner in Keenan Lewis.
I like what Oakland did to improve their defense, but slowing down the Saints is no easy task. Especially, inside the perfect conditions of the Superdome. Last year New Orleans averaged an impressive 32.4 ppg at home compared to just 25.5 ppg overall.
The Saints figure to be even more potent offensively in 2016. They added in tight end Coby Fleener and used an early pick on Ohio State wide out Michael Thomas. I see Brees picking apart the Raiders secondary in this one. You also have to keep in mind that the Saints aren’t going to let their foot off the gas. They know they have to put up a lot of points with the defense they are sending out.
Backing the Over early in the season with the Saints has been a wise investment. Over is 6-2 in their last 8 games in September and 4-1 in their last 5 during Week 1. Over is also 5-1 in New Orleans’ last 6 as a home favorite of 3 points or less.