After ending up on the wrong end of one of the worst blown calls in NFL history and one that ruined their chance of reaching Super Bowl 53 last season, Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints will enter the 2019 NFL regular season looking for nothing less than a Super Bowl appearance.
Whether New Orleans flies high again like they did last season or whether they come up short of their Super Bowl hopes, there are a bunch of insightful things you need to know about the Saints before they take to the gridiron for the 2019 campaign. Let’s find out everything you need to know about New Orleans right now.
New Orleans Saints 2019 NFL Season Betting Guide
- ATS: 13-3 (W-L) / 10-6-0 (ATS) /4-4-0 (Home) / 6-2-0 (Away) / 2-1-0 (Grass) / 8-5-0 (Turf)
- O/U: 7-9-0 (W-L) / 5-3-0 (Home) / 2-6-0 (Away) / 1-2-0 (Grass) / 6-7-0 (Turf) / 53.6 (Total)
Not only did Drew Brees and company tie the Los Angeles Rams with a league-high 13 victories in 2018, but the Saints also covered the chalk at a high rate by going an impressive 10-6 ATS. New Orleans covered the chalk six times on the road. Despite owning one of the most explosive offenses in all of football, New Orleans played under the O/U total nine times, including six times on the road.
Did you know the New Orleans Saints covered the spread in nine straight games a year ago, starting in Week 3 of the 2018 regular season?
- Total Yards: 379.2 / Rank 8
- Passing Yards: 252.6 / Rank 12
- Rushing Yards: 126.6 /Rank 7
- Points Scored: 31.5 / Rank 3
- Field Goal %: 93.3 / Rank 4
New Orleans was rock-solid across the board offensively last season by ranking eighth overall, 12th in passing, seventh in rushing and an impressive third in scoring (31.5 ppg). To address their needs on the offensive side of the ball, The Saints signed veteran running back Latavius Murray, tight end Jared Cook, quarterback Teddy Bridgewater and punt returner/cornerback Marcus Sherels while drafting Texas A&M center Erik McCoy in the second round.
- Total Yards: 349.1 / Rank 14
- Passing Yards: 268.9 / Rank 29
- Rushing Yards: 80.2 /Rank 2
- Points Allowed: 22.1 / Rank 14
- Field Goal %: 73.9 / Rank 2
The Saints finished a respectable 14th in total defense and identical 14th in points allowed (22.1 ppg). While the Saints routinely shut down the run, that may have been more of a byproduct that teams could throw the ball on them easily as New Orleans finished a discouraging 29th against the pass.
To address their needs on the defensive side of the ball, New Orleans signed veteran defensive lineman Mario Edwards, linebacker Craig Robertson and defensive tackle Malcolm Brown while re-signing veteran cornerback P.J. Williams and kicker Will Lutz. The Saints also added a pair of safeties in the draft by nabbing Florida’s Chauncey Gardner-Johnson in the fourth round and Rutgers’ Saquan Hampton in the sixth round.
- Touchdowns: Alvin Kamara (18)
- Rushing: Alvin Kamara (883)
- Passing: Drew Brees (3991)
- Receiving: Michael Thomas (1405)
- Sacks: Cameron Jordan (12.0)
- Interceptions: Eli Apple (2)
Second-year running back Alvin Kamara had his second straight fantastic season by recording a team-high 18 touchdowns while rushing for a team-high 883 yards. The dual-threat star also added 709 yards in receptions while scoring 14 rushing TDs.
Sure-fire future Hall of Fame signal-caller Drew Brees showed no signs of aging whatsoever by completing an insane 74.4 percent of his passes for 3,992 yards with 33 touchdowns and a career-low five interceptions. Pro Bowl wide receiver Michael Thomas had a career and team-high 1,405 receiving yards while veteran defensive end Cameron Jordan had a team-high 12 sacks. Veteran cornerback Eli Apple added a team-high two interceptions and the best news is that each f the Saints’ 2018 team leaders are all back in 2019.
New Orleans lost veteran running back Mark Ingram and veteran defensive end Alex Okafor in free agency while veteran tight end Benjamin Watson retired from football, but I think the Saints did a great job of addressing their needs on both sides of the ball in free agency and the draft.
More importantly, Drew Brees is still playing at an insanely high level despite turning 40 in January. New Orleans will definitely put their share of points on the board with Brees, Michael Thomas and Alvin Kamara leading the way, but will New Orleans play solid defense this coming season? My best guess is that they will finish somewhere between 10th and 15th overall.
In addition to their four difficult NFC South division matchups against Carolina and Atlanta, the Saints will also be taking on what should be an improved Tampa Bay Buccaneers team as well in 2019 thanks to the hiring of no-nonsense head coach Bruce Arians. New Orleans also has some difficult non-division matchups against Houston, the L.A. Rams, Seattle, Dallas, Chicago and Indianapolis on their 2019 docket. Still, I’m projecting the Saints to reach the double-digit win mark for the third straight season while challenging for a berth in the NFC Championship game at the very least. Besides, New Orleans is due for some good luck in 2019 after the way they saw their Super Bowl 53 hopes snatched away from them by incompetent game officials.