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Monday Night Football Saints vs Buccaneers predictions, picks and odds: Who is the favorite?

Sitting on opposite ends of the NFC South table, the importance of this game can’t be overstated as the Bucs look to stamp their authority, while the Saints seek to climb.

Monday Night Football Saints vs Buccaneers predictions, picks and odds: Who is the favorite?
Chris GraythenGetty

It’s ‘Monday Night Football’ in NFL’s Week 13 and we’ve got to bitter rivals from the NFC in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the New Orleans Saints. Here are your odds picks and predictions for this key matchup.

Saints vs Bucs: The lay of the land

Though they lost their last game, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers can take further control of the NFC South Division with a win over the New Orleans Saints on Monday night. While that sounds academic, considering they beat the Saints back in Week 2, the truth is the Saints are a team against which they and their seven-time Super Bowl champion QB have struggled. At the moment, the 5-6 Bucs who actually 2-1 in the division and 5-2 in the conference are banged up in defense with a number of players on the injury report. The only saving grace is that the 4-8 Saints who are 1-2 in the division and 3-5 in the conference are in a similar position where injuries are concerned. Where the head-to-head is concerned, we will draw your attention to what we said before, which is to say New Orleans is not a team that the Bucs do well against. Indeed, they’ve won seven of the last eight meetings with Tampa Bay. Kickoff is set for 8:15 p.m. ET from the Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.

Tom Brady isn’t messing around lately

For the season so far, TB12 has completed 311 of his 470 passes (66.2%) for 3,051 yards and 14 touchdowns across 11 starts. There have been two interceptions, but with his passer rating of 94.2 we’re guessing he’s not too bothered. As if you needed more proof, the future Hall of Famer has registered three 300-yard games this season and also has more than two in which he posted three touchdowns. Yet, it’s got to be said, there is more to the Bucs than their QB. Wide receiver Chris Godwin has proven himself this year with 60 receptions to the tune of 585 yards and two touchdowns. Quite frankly, with seven plays for more than 20 yards including a season high 44-yard explosion, the kid has been special. Though they lost in overtime in their last game, Godwin was sensational with 12 receptions for 110 yards and a touchdown.

The Saints have what it takes

While he may not be a household name like his counterpart on the opposite side of the field, Saints QB Andy Dalton has been decent of late. If there’s one criticism that could be levelled at him, it’s that he’s been conservative at times, as evidenced by the 180 completions on 271 passes that he’s attempted. At the moment Dalton has 2,023 yards and 14 touchdowns across nine games. In six of those, he threw for more than 200 yards including a 361-yard, four-touchdown show that he put down in what ultimately turned out to be a 42-34 loss to Arizona back in October. Where their running game is concerned, the Saints also have a weapon in Alvin Kamara. On 131 carries he’s produced 524 yards and one touchdown. It’s worth mentioning that Kamara has also chipped in with 26 first down conversions. Interestingly his receptions have been impressive with 26 of them to date.

Saints vs Bucs: The Odds

CategoriesNew Orleans SaintsTampa Bay Buccaneers
Picks-3 (-125)+3 (+105)
Over/Under Points Totalu41 (-110)o41 (-110)

Saints vs Bucs: The Prediction

On the one side, there’s a lot to unpack where these two teams are concerned, on the other there are actually quite a few injuries on either side of the divide. Though the Saints have proven to be a real problem for Tom Brady and Co. and we do expect this one to be tight, we’re going to go with a 20-16 Buccaneers win.