The Saints come off of a disappointing 7-9 season where they inexplicably had trouble winning at home, where they had dominated for many years. Will that change in 2015?
The 2015 NFL regular season commences on Thursday, September 10th, but before we get to that point, we will be here presenting daily team profiles in an attempt to assist you with your NFL picks in advance of Kickoff Weekend. Today we are profiling the New Orleans Saints, who finished 7-9 in 2014 and in second place in the NFC South, failing to make the playoffs.
First off, here is a summary of the New Orleans betting statistics over the past five seasons. Take note that all of these statistics are for regular season games only.
New Orleans Saints Betting Stats, 2010 through 2014
|Over – Under||22-18||20-19-1||42-37-1|
|Avg. Total Score||51.0||49.8||50.5|
Before last season, the Saints were pretty predictable as they were great bets at home (now 63.2 percent ATS the last five years) and poor bets on the road (38.5 percent). However, that home ATS record sat at 22-8, 73.3 percent the previous four seasons before, for whatever reason, New Orleans went just 2-6 ATS last year while posting a losing record at the Superdome of 3-5 straight up!
Key Trend: The ‘over’ is 14-4, 77.8 percent in New Orleans home games when coming off of an ATS win.
Next we shall take a look at the Saints’ statistical summary for the 2014 season.
2014 New Orleans Saints Team Statistics (Per Game)
|Offense||Off. Rank||Defense||Def. Rank|
|Yds. Per Rush||4.5||8th||4.8||31st|
|Yds Per Pass||7.2||8th||7.4||27th|
|Yds. Per Play||6.2||5th||6.2||29th|
The Saints led the NFL in total offense last season, but they were actually outscored by -1.4 points per game, resulting in the 7-9 record. The sad part of that is they would have won the weak NFC South with one more win at 8-8. The major culprit was the defense in its second season under defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, as it went from second in the NFL in total defense in his first season in 2013 to second to last in 2014!
And now we take a peek at various New Orleans Future Odds for this 2015 season from several sportsbooks. You can view these and other future and prop odds on the Sportsbook Review Futures and Prop Bets Directory.
2015 New Orleans Saints NFL Futures
|Super Bowl Odds||+4300||+4682||+4000||+4200|
|NFC Conf. Odds||+1800||+2440||+2200||+1750|
|NFC South Odds||+185||+202||+225||+185|
|Win Total||8½ ov-120||8½ ov-120||8½ ov-135||8½ ov-120|
The sportsbooks seem to expect a 9-7 record from the Saints based on their win-total of 8½ with the ‘over’ being juiced. And in the world that is the NFC South these days, a 9-7 mark could mean running away with the division title! However, New Orleans is only the outright division favorite at Pinnacle and Heritage while being the co-second choice with Carolina behind Atlanta at Bookmaker and the third choice at Bovada behind those same other two teams.
New Orleans Saints Key Additions
The offense could be transitioning to more of a run-first attack with the additions of running backs C. J. Spiller and Travaris Cadet, as well as center Max Unger, who is a tremendous run-blocker. The defense added some veterans in defensive lineman Anthony Spencer and cornerbacks Brandon Browner and Kyle Wilson, but New Orleans really attempted to improve that unit though the draft.
Those draft picks included linebackers Stephone Anthony and Hau'oli Kikaha as well as cornerback/safety P.J. Williams, all of whom could see extensive time as rookies this season with Kikaha having the flexibility to play on the defensive line if needed.
New Orleans Saints Key Losses
The most significant loss was tight end Jimmy Graham, who was traded for Unger in a move that may singlehandedly change the personality of the New Orleans offense. Other losses were running back Pierre Thomas and wide receiver Kenny Stills, as well as kicker Shayne Graham.