Expert Final Thoughts - Monday Night Football Week 3 Picks

Saints player Drew Brees in action

Kevin Stott

Monday, September 26, 2016 2:50 PM UTC

Monday, Sep. 26, 2016 2:50 PM UTC

Drew Brees and host New Orleans Saints look to avoid a 0-3 start when they face Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons. Is it wiser to back the Saints here in a must-win spot or to back the Under when many are perceiving a high-scoring affair in The Big Easy? Let’s investigate and make a pick.


Atlanta Falcons vs New Orleans Saints 
Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints (0-2 SU, 1-1 ATS, 47 PS-51 PA) welcome the Atlanta Falcons (1-1 SU, 1-1 ATS, 59 PS-59 PA) to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans for this big NFL Regular Season Week 3 showdown. Sportsbooks have New Orleans as 3-point favorites  while the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook opened New Orleans as 4-point favorites in its Advanced Line released last Tuesday for this matchup.

As you can see across the board, the Total is 53½ everywhere while in the money Line marketplace has the Saints priced in the -145 to -160 range with the current -160 at Bookmaker—an offshore sportsbook which has a solid A+ grade here at SBR and which features a 50% Free Play Bonus (up to $300).


Key Player Injuries and Suspensions
Atlanta -
 Keanu Neal probable Monday vs. New Orleans (Knee), De'Vondre Campbell "?" Monday vs. New Orleans (Ankle), Brooks Reed "?" Monday vs. New Orleans (Shoulder), Devin Fuller IR (Shoulder), Jalen Collins expected to miss first 4 games (Suspension).

New Orleans -  Zach Strief "?" Monday vs. Atlanta (Chest), P.J. Williams IR (Concussion), Kenny Vaccaro "?" Monday vs. Atlanta (Ankle),  Dannell Ellerbe "?" Monday vs. Atlanta (Quad), Josh Hill expected to miss 2-3 weeks (Ankle), Delvin Breaux expected to miss 6-8 weeks (Fibula), Sheldon Rankins IR (Fibula), Michael Hoomanawanui IR (Leg), Damian Swann IR (Abdominal), Hau'oli Kikaha PUP (Knee)


Monday Night Football Trends, How This Game Could Play Out
The Monday Night Football Trends here heading into NFL Week 3 show New Orleans to be 8-9 ATS as a home favorite and 14-11 home O/U with Julio Jones and Atlanta 4-5 ATS as a Road Underdog and 4/7 Away O/U. Both teams have been weak on 3rd Down so far this season with the Falcons 4-for-11 (34.8%) and the Saints just 3-for-12 (25%). With Ryan not the same QB he was a couple of seasons back and the 37-year-old Brees likely on his last legs, that 53½ looks higher than usual, especially after last week’s presumed Saints-Giants score-fest turned into a borefest and a stone-cold Under.

The L7 meetings in this series have seen 5 Unders 1 Over and a Push. The Under is 9-1-1 in the L11 Atlanta games against NFC South opponents and 22-7-1 the L30 Falcons games overall. With the Saints scared of a nightmare 0-3 start, expect a tentative and slowish start here with the home site with desperation carrying some weight in the end.


Predicted Final Score: Saints 24 Falcons 23
NFL Week MNF Pick: Under 53½ -105 at Bookmaker
NFL Picks Season ATS Record: 26-13-0
NFL Regular Season ATS Record: 17-8-0

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