A rematch of Super Bowl XLIV is in store for this week’s Sunday Night Football as Drew Brees and the (2-4) New Orleans Saints visit Peyton Manning and the (3-3) Denver Broncos.
Opening kickoff for this interconference showdown is scheduled for tonight at 8:35 p.m. EST (6:35 p.m. MST) on NBC.
Denver starts week 8 knotted up with San Diego atop the AFC West division, while New Orleans finds itself tied with Tampa Bay for second place in the NFC South (4 GB ATL).
According to the latest NFL week 8 odds, the Broncos (-6) will enter this game as betting favorites by a touchdown over the visiting Saints (+6). NFL week 8 predictions specialists also believe N.O. and Denver will combine and score an OVER/UNDER total of 55 points.
With a 6-point cushion, not only do I like the Saints against the spread in this matchup, but so does 64% of the betting population in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Out of the more than 3,600 people surveyed, an overwhelming 2,314 expressed interest in the wagering on the Saints as a winning underdog bet… and why not.
After starting the season 0-4, New Orleans has been on a tear offensively, led of course, by the Most Valuable Player in Super Bowl XLIV.
Over the last three games, Brees has completed over 67 percent of his passes for an eye-popping 1,193 yards, 11 touchdown and just 2 interceptions. Those numbers improve his totals to 18 TDs and 7 INTs on the season, to go with his 2,07 yards and for an outstanding 96.1 quarterback rating.
But that’s not the only thing that makes the Saints a very attractive ATS bet against Denver tonight. In addition to the aforementioned numbers, check out some of New Orleans’ latest ATS betting trends:
- Saints are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games following a bye week.
- Saints are 9-1 ATS in their last 10 games following a S.U. win.
- Saints are 10-2 ATS in their last 12 games following a ATS win.
- Saints are 11-3 ATS in their last 14 games after allowing more than 250 yards passing in their previous game.
For the hosting Broncos, their bye week couldn’t have come at a better time, as this team was able to overcome a disastrous start against San Diego on October 15th.
After a sloppy first half, filled with turnovers and unforced errors, Denver went into the locker room trailing 0-24 and seemed dead in the water.
However No.18 came to life in the third and fourth stanzas, as his team stopped turning the ball over and actually gave him a chance to impact in the outcome of the game.
Manning would go on to have one of those magical performances we’ve grown so accustomed to seeing out of him, completing 24 of his 30 pass attempts for 309 yards, three scores and just one pick.
More importantly, the Broncos came roaring back with a 35-point second half, while its defense did the rest, pitching a shutout in the third and fourth quarters.
Heading into the second half of the 2012 NFL season, Manning & Co. hope to avoid the tendency this team has shown to put itself behind the 8-ball early in games.
“We’re studying it and trying hard to get off to a better start,” said the only 4-time MVP in NFL history. “This would be a great week to do it. This is not a team you want to fall behind because they have potential to keep scoring, keep extending that lead.”
Here are two very compelling ATS betting trends for the Broncos heading into tonight’s Sunday Night showdown:
- Broncos are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games on grass.
- Broncos are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games following a bye week.
Based on all the aforementioned stats, figures, matchups and the circumstances surrounding this game, my Sunday Night Football predictions conclude that the Saints with six ATS points to spare is a heck of a wager.
This game has all the makings of an instant classic, however, what it doesn’t have is the ingredients of a blowout.
Based on how the desperate Saints and the rested Broncos matchup, I don’t see the score differential being larger than two field goals going either way. So, which would should you lean in this one?
Take the Saints at +6 simply because even if they happen to fall behind, they have the weapons to not only get back in the game and make it close, but also even steal one on the road at Mile High.
In addition, New Orleans at +6 is without question the smarter, safer bet in this Sunday night, because you should never underestimate the power of desperation; and that’s exactly how Brees and the Saints will have to feel, from now until the end of the season, just to have a fighting chance at a postseason berth following their 0-4 start.
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