- Current Lines
- ATS: New Orleans Saints -8 (Opened New Orleans Saints -8)
- Moneyline: New York Giants +293 / New Orleans Saints -377 (Opened same)
- Total: 43 (Opened 43.5)
- *Breakeven %
- **ATS: 50.9% either way (as always for each team)
- Moneyline: 25.4% New York Giants, 79% New Orleans Saints
- Total: 50.4% (either way)
- Last meeting: The away Saints beat the Giants 33-18 in 2018
*Reminder: “Breakeven %” equates to, informally, how confident/probable you would need to be to bet that side, and get a fair/even bet (i.e. it helps bettors understand the pricing/payout/odds all at the same time).
**That extra 1.1 percentage points is the price you pay for a fair ATS bet
|When the Saints have the ball|
|When the Giants have the ball|
The Giants are coming off a tough Home loss in which according to ESPN’s Win Probability Calculator they literally were predicted to win throughout the first 57:41 minutes of the game, yet lost:
The Giants remained one of a handful of winless teams left in the NFL. The Saints on the other hand are coming off their second significant win of the season (first the Packers, now the Patriots), vs a well-coached/quality opponent. They continue on their road trying to prove they can contend without recently retired Drew Brees. According to the Football Outsiders Almanac, (since 1993) there have been 10 teams that needed to replace a 10-year veteran/Hall of Fame QB. On average those teams won 4.3 fewer games the following year. Only the 2012 Colts (Andrew Luck’s rookie season) and 2000 Dolphins (Jay Fiedler) had a winning record the following season. Jameis Winston and the Saints will continue their quest to be the third.
When the Saints have the ball (NYG Defense)
**Key NEW Injuries:
-NO OFF: Terron Armstead will be out this week, however (likely due to solid replacement James Hurst) doesn’t have too much of a drop in team production when he’s been off the field (this year or last)
-NYG DEF: Blake Martinez is out for the season. According to SIS datahub ON/OFF Report, Blake Martinez has a net .21 EPA per play (lost) when OFF the field.
Through 3 games Jameis Winston has sent fans through a bit of a roller-coaster. However, when applying the “analytical lens” you see he’s mainly underwhelmed. The 35th (of 42) ranked QB according to PFF, numbers were mainly inflated by the power of distortion. Instead the Saints have mainly been driven by their run game. Or let me rephrase that, the CONSISTENCY of their run game. Take a look at their rushing ranks according to the SIS Datahub:
|Rushing Positive Play %||10th|
You can read this table as such: The Saints rushing attack (relative to their peers’) has in aggregate not produced a high level of success. However, as “Positive Play %” records the distribution of those runs that led to positive EPA points (i.e. no magnitude, “they are getting on base alot, but not many homeruns/triples”).
On the other side of the ball, the Giants defense with their 3-man rushes and little blitzing looks similar to their 2020 version: not great, but not terrible with just enough bad QBs (Andy Dalton, Kyle Allen, Brandon Allen and the Eagles in meltdown mode) sprinkled in to skew the perspective that they are average.
The one relative strength is their interior D-Line, which opponents last year refused to run into (41.9% of all rushes went inside, lowest in the league for a defense). This for the most part has remained steady in 2021, and should be interesting to see how much the Saints challenge the gut of the Giant’s defense.
**Note that Injuries considered are ONLY for players that have played the majority of snaps for their side of the ball WITHIN the DVOA rating/PFF Grade we are using as our base (i.e. only players that helped/hurt performance that we are taking into account, that will NOT/confirmed will NOT play this week
When the Giants have the ball (NO Defense)
**Key NEW Injuries:
-NYG OFF: NONE
-NO DEF: NONE
The Giants offense will always be neutered with Jason Garrett at the helm. Between multiple reports of how he “threw games” calling crap plays the year before he got handed play-calling duties, and his idiotic tactical decisions (like increasing early down run rates from 20th to 7th in the NFL AFTER Saquon Barkley goes down last year) he is flirting with “Adam Gase” territory of futility. Coupled with poor coaching the Giants are led by deep or nothing QB Daniel Jones. Believe it or not Jones had the second-highest completion rate of Passes over 25 yards. YET, on passes thrown 5 yards or less, he had the 3rd lowest Yards/Attempt. Read: Beyond the occasional Jones bomb, the Giants couldn’t make anything happen in the short-intermediate areas of the field.
The hope was that much of this would be improved with the return of “short area” specialist Saquan Barkley and the drafting of Kadarius Toney. So far the results in 2021 are encouraging for Jones and the Giants Offense (spray chart thanks to PFF):
On the other side of the ball though, the Saints defense has continued their stellar play of the past couple years. They come in as the third highest ranked defense by DVOA and have a clear advantage on this side of play. Additionally, Daniel Jones has a history of significant Man vs Zone splits during his young career.
|Man Successful Play Rate||Zone Successful Play Rate|
The New Orleans Saints led the league in Man Coverage rate last year (47%), and currently running Cover 0/1 (Man) at the third highest rate in the NFL (30%). This does not bode well for Jones. Jones, who by the way has been flirting with a 1-2 interception game. According to PFF, he has thrown 3 turnover-worthy passes, with 0 interceptions. A quick look at his QB Archetype through 3 games, confirms this:
|Time to Throw Rank||24th longest TTT|
|ADOT Rank||12th farthest|
|Aggressiveness Rank||3rd most aggressive|
|Expected Completion Rank||24th lowest|
|+/- Completion Rank||19th|
Daniel Jones will throw 1-2 interceptions in this game.
This may be closer than the market believes given some issues that the Saints offense will have running vs the teeth of the Giants defense. However, given this will be the first time New Orleans is back in front of their home crowd this year, there will likely be a very strong home field advantage component.
Pick: Saints -8