The Atlanta Falcons are set to host the New Orleans Saints in the prime time matchup on Thanksgiving Day. Kickoff is set for 8:20 EST at Mercedes-Benz Stadium and will be televised nationally on NBC.

Oddsmakers opened up this line with New Orleans as a 7-point road favorite. While that number is still out there, several books have dropped below the key number to the Saints -6.5. The total opened at 48.5 and is up to 49 at a few places.

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Saints vs Falcons Game Odds & Betting Preview

New Orleans Saints (9-2 SU, 7-4 ATS)

The Saints come into this one off a thrilling and fortunate 34-31 win at home over the Carolina Panthers. After jumping out to a 14-0 lead in the first 10 minutes of the game it looked like New Orleans was going to cruise to a victory. The Panthers, who were fighting to save their season, battled back and tied the game at 31-31 early in the 4th quarter.

After stopping the Saints on a 4th & 1 on the New Orleans 45, Carolina had 1st & Goal on the Saints 3-yard line with just over 2 minutes to play. Panthers failed to find the endzone in 3 attempts and kicker Joey Slye proceeded to miss a chip-shot field goal from 28-yards out. Brees then guided the Saints 65 yards in the final minutes to set up the game-winning field goal.

The Panthers failed to cover in the victory as a 10-point favorite and are now just 1-2 against the number after covering 6 straight games.

Atlanta Falcons (3-8 SU, 3-7-1 ATS) 

The Falcons enter off a demoralizing 35-22 loss at home to the Bucs as a 3-point favorite. Considering Atlanta was just 3-7 coming into the game the result might not seem all that surprising, but it was. Prior to laying an egg at home against Tampa Bay, the Falcons had put together two dominant performances, beating the Saints in New Orleans 26-9 as a 14-point dog and the Panthers 29-3 in Carolina as a 4.5-point dog.

With that loss any hopes of Atlanta putting together a run to sneak back into the NFC playoff picture can be put to rest. Now it’s simply a matter of can this team find enough motivation to finish out the season strong and potentially save head coach Dan Quinn’s job.

Matchup History

As mention, the Falcons won the earlier matchup at New Orleans in what has to be one of the most shocking upsets of the season. Not only because Atlanta was a 14.5-point dog, but how they dominated on their way to a 26-9 victory. That win snapped a 3-game skid in the series and marked the first time the Falcons won in New Orleans since 2016.

Free NFL Betting Predictions and Pick: Saints -6.5

My early lean here would be to lay the points with New Orleans. I know this is going to be a big public play and that’s not usually the side you want to be on, but I got major concerns with Atlanta coming into this game. If I can’t get there with the spread, I definitely will have New Orleans in a 6-point teaser.

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The number one concern I have with the Falcons is the injury situation. Last week they were without two of their best offensive players in tight end Austin Hooper and running back Devonta Freeman. Given the short week, it would seem a bit unlikely that either way play. They also could be without star wide out Julio Jones, who suffered a shoulder injury in the loss to the Bucs. Hard to imagine the Falcons defense has as much success as they did in the first meeting, making it hard to believe Atlanta can score enough here to keep this close.

My second big concern with the Falcons is their mental state. Prior to that upset against the Saints in the first meeting, the Falcons were coming out of their bye believing if they won that game they had a shot to turn their season around. Now there’s next to no hope for this team. They are 6-games back of the Saints in the NFC South with 5 to play, so the division is out of the picture. They are also 5-games back of the Vikings with 5 to play for the final Wild Card and have 7 teams in front of them. I just don’t know that this being a division home game is enough to get the juices flowing.

Lastly, the Saints are going to come in with a chip on their shoulder after what happened in that last meeting. They still got plenty of motivation to finish with one of the two best records in the NFC and with a win they can lock up the NFC South title. Give me the Saints -6.5!