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New Orleans Saints vs. Carolina Panthers Pick & Prediction DEC 29TH 2019

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The NFC South champion New Orleans Saints will try to move up the NFC playoff seeding ladder by closing out the regular season with a road victory over the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. The Saints eked out a 34-31 home win over the Panthers in Week 12 and have won five of the past six meetings with their division rivals.

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The only thing the Panthers have left to do is play spoiler to the Saints, who have already clinched the NFC South title and are in a three-way tie for the best record in the NFC along with Green Bay and San Francisco. New Orleans can still end up anywhere from the No. 1 seed - and home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs - to the No. 3 seed facing a wild-card game, though the Saints need some help in the form of a 49ers (at Seattle) or Packers (at Detroit) loss or tie to get off the No. 3 line. "We're still playing for all those things in front of us," New Orleans coach Sean Payton told reporters. "I don't think this is a long shot, what we need this week." Carolina is trying to avoid ending the season with an eight-game losing streak after sitting at 5-3 after Week 9.

TV: 1 p.m. ET, FOX. LINE: New Orleans -13 O/U: 46

ABOUT THE SAINTS (12-3): New Orleans kept alive its dream of home-field advantage - or at least a first-round bye - with a 38-28 victory at Tennessee last week and has won six straight road games. Brees is nursing a knee injury that limited him in practice Wednesday, but the veteran quarterback, who enters the game leading the league with a 75.3 completion percentage and on track to break his own NFL record of 74.4 percent last season, is expected to suit up. Regardless of whether it's Brees or Teddy Bridgewater, the Saints have the league's top receiver in Michael Thomas, who leads the NFL in receptions (145) and receiving yards (1,688), as well as a respectable defense that is especially tough against the run.

ABOUT THE PANTHERS (5-10): The Panthers are 0-3 since interim coach Perry Fewell took over and have lost two of the three by at least 20 points, including a 38-6 blowout at Indianapolis last week. Rookie quarterback Will Grier is set to make his second start and is likely to lean heavily on Christian McCaffrey, who had 15 receptions last week and needs 216 yards from scrimmage to break Chris Johnson's record of 2,509 set in 2009. Carolina's defense has struggled, allowing 29 or more points in six straight games and giving up at least 250 rushing yards in each of the last four contests.


1. Brees needs 274 passing yards to reach 3,000 for the 16th consecutive season after falling eight yards short of a 13th consecutive 4,000-yard season a year ago.

2. McCaffrey has joined Marshall Faulk and Chris Johnson as the only players in history with at least nine games of 150 or more scrimmage yards in a season, and he needs 67 receiving yards to join Faulk and Roger Craig as the only players with 1,000 yards rushing and receiving in the same season.

3. Thomas has set the NFL's single-season record for receptions and needs 112 receiving yards to become the fifth player in history with 1,800 receiving yards.


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New Orleans Saints

Carolina Panthers

Player Position Lineup
Terron Armstead primary: Left Tackle Starter
Drew Brees primary: Quarterback Starter
Demario Davis primary: Weak Outside Linebacker Starter
Trey Hendrickson primary: Right Defensive End Starter
Josh Hill primary: Tight End Starter
Taysom Hill primary: Tight End Starter
Cameron Jordan primary: Left Defensive End Starter
A.J. Klein primary: Strong Outside Linebacker Starter
Marshon Lattimore primary: Right Cornerback Starter
David Onyemata primary: Defensive Tackle Starter
Andrus Peat primary: Left Guard Starter
Ryan Ramczyk primary: Right Tackle Starter
Tre'quan Smith primary: Wide Receiver Starter
Michael Thomas primary: Wide Receiver Starter
Larry Warford primary: Right Guard Starter
P.J. Williams primary: Free Safety Starter
Latavius Murray primary: Runningback Starter
Malcom Brown primary: Nose Tackle Starter
Erik McCoy primary: Center Starter
C.J. Gardner-Johnson primary: Strong Safety Starter
Kiko Alonso primary: Middle Linebacker Starter
Janoris Jenkins primary: Left Cornerback Starter
Teddy Bridgewater primary: Quarterback Substitution
Will Clapp primary: Center Substitution
Ted Ginn Jr. primary: Wide Receiver Substitution
Justin Hardee primary: Cornerback Substitution
Alvin Kamara primary: Runningback Substitution
Wil Lutz primary: Kicker Substitution
Thomas Morstead primary: Punter Substitution
Craig Robertson primary: Linebacker Substitution
Patrick Robinson primary: Cornerback Substitution
Taylor Stallworth primary: Defensive Tackle Substitution
Dwayne Washington primary: Runningback Substitution
Zach Wood primary: Long Snapper Substitution
Mario Edwards Jr. primary: Defensive Tackle Substitution
Nick Easton primary: Center Substitution
Jared Cook primary: Tight End Substitution
J.T. Gray primary: Defensive Back Substitution
Deonte Harris primary: Wide Receiver Substitution
Carl Granderson primary: Defensive End Substitution
Lil'Jordan Humphrey primary: Wide Receiver Substitution
Shy Tuttle primary: Defensive Tackle Substitution
Patrick Omameh primary: Guard Substitution
Stephone Anthony primary: Linebacker Substitution
Ricky Ortiz primary: Fullback Substitution
D.J. Swearinger primary: Defensive Back Substitution
Eli Apple primary: Cornerback Not active
Vonn Bell primary: Safety Not active
Zach Line primary: Fullback Not active
Marcus Williams primary: Safety Not active
Ethan Greenidge primary: Offensive Linesman Not active
Manti Te'o primary: Linebacker Not active
Noah Spence primary: Defensive End Not active
Player Position Lineup
Mario Addison primary: Defensive End Starter
James Bradberry primary: Cornerback Starter
Jermaine Carter primary: Inside Linebacker Starter
Ross Cockrell primary: Cornerback Starter
Luke Kuechly primary: Inside Linebacker Starter
Kyle Love primary: Defensive Tackle Starter
Chris Manhertz primary: Tight End Starter
Christian McCaffrey primary: Runningback Starter
Taylor Moton primary: Right Tackle Starter
Greg Olsen primary: Tight End Starter
Eric Reid primary: Strong Safety Starter
Curtis Samuel primary: Wide Receiver Starter
Trai Turner primary: Right Guard Starter
Daryl Williams primary: Left Guard Starter
Matt Paradis primary: Center Starter
Bruce Irvin primary: Defensive End Starter
Chris Hogan primary: Wide Receiver Starter
Will Grier primary: Quarterback Starter
Dennis Daley primary: Left Tackle Starter
Gerald McCoy primary: Defensive Tackle Starter
Javien Elliott primary: Cornerback Starter
Tre Boston primary: Free Safety Starter
Kyle Allen primary: Quarterback Substitution
Alex Armah primary: Fullback Substitution
Vernon Butler primary: Defensive Tackle Substitution
Donte Jackson primary: Cornerback Substitution
J.J. Jansen primary: Long Snapper Substitution
Colin Jones primary: Safety Substitution
Tyler Larsen primary: Center Substitution
Efe Obada primary: Defensive End Substitution
Michael Palardy primary: Punter Substitution
Andre Smith primary: Linebacker Substitution
Ian Thomas primary: Tight End Substitution
Jarius Wright primary: Wide Receiver Substitution
DeAndrew White primary: Wide Receiver Substitution
Reggie Bonnafon primary: Runningback Substitution
Cole Luke primary: Cornerback Substitution
Brian Burns primary: Linebacker Substitution
Jordan Kunaszyk primary: Linebacker Substitution
Joey Slye primary: Kicker Substitution
Brandon Zylstra primary: Wide Receiver Substitution
Wes Horton primary: Defensive End Substitution
Mike Davis primary: Runningback Substitution
Stacy McGee primary: Defensive Tackle Substitution
Chris Reed primary: Guard Substitution
T.J. Green primary: Cornerback Substitution
Corn Elder primary: Cornerback Not active
Marquis Haynes primary: Linebacker Not active
DJ Moore primary: Wide Receiver Not active
Shaq Thompson primary: Linebacker Not active
Woodrow Hamilton primary: Defensive Tackle Not active
Christian Miller primary: Linebacker Not active
Matt Kaskey primary: Offensive Tackle Not active

New Orleans Saints

Carolina Panthers

  • Match Start
  • Period 1
  • MIN 1
    • scoring-play
    • Touchdown
    • Rush
    • 1 Yards
    • Rusher: Alvin Kamara
    • Conv Kicker: Wil Lutz
  • MIN 10
    • scoring-play
    • Touchdown
    • Rush
    • 15 Yards
    • Rusher: Alvin Kamara
    • Conv Kicker: Wil Lutz
  • Period 2
  • MIN 0
    • scoring-play
    • Field Goal
    • 23 Yards
    • FG Kicker: Joey Slye
  • MIN 2
    • scoring-play
    • Touchdown
    • Pass
    • 21 Yards
    • Pass Receiver: Jared Cook
    • Passer: Drew Brees
    • Conv Kicker: Wil Lutz
  • MIN 6
    • scoring-play
    • Touchdown
    • Pass
    • 1 Yards
    • Pass Receiver: Tre'quan Smith
    • Passer: Drew Brees
    • Conv Kicker: Wil Lutz
  • MIN 12
    • scoring-play
    • Touchdown
    • Interception Return
    • 14 Yards
    • Interception Returner: A.J. Klein
    • Conv Kicker: Wil Lutz
  • Period 3
  • MIN 0
    • scoring-play
    • Touchdown
    • Rush
    • 1 Yards
    • Rusher: Christian McCaffrey
    • Conv Kicker: Joey Slye
  • MIN 4
    • scoring-play
    • Touchdown
    • Pass
    • 45 Yards
    • Pass Receiver: Taysom Hill
    • Passer: Drew Brees
    • Conv Kicker: Wil Lutz
  • Match End


Last 10

W 80% L 20%
8 2
  • @Denver W 31 - 3
  • Atlanta W 9 - 24
  • San Francisco W 13 - 27
  • @Tampa Bay W 38 - 3
  • @Chicago W 26 - 23
  • Carolina W 24 - 27
  • L.A. Chargers W 27 - 30
  • @Detroit W 35 - 29
  • Green Bay L 37 - 30
  • @Las Vegas L 24 - 34
W 40% L 60%
4 6
  • @Minnesota L 27 - 28
  • Detroit W 0 - 20
  • Tampa Bay L 46 - 23
  • @Kansas City L 31 - 33
  • Atlanta L 25 - 17
  • @New Orleans L 24 - 27
  • Chicago L 23 - 16
  • @Atlanta W 23 - 16
  • Arizona W 21 - 31
  • @L.A. Chargers W 21 - 16

Next Games

  • @Atlanta(11-28-19) W 26 - 18
  • @Philadelphia(10-11-15) L 17 - 39
  • Kansas City(08-09-13) W 13 - 17
  • Minnesota(01-05-20) L 26 - 20
  • @Carolina(12-29-19) W 42 - 10
  • Denver(11-11-12) L 36 - 14
  • @Green Bay(11-10-19) L 16 - 24
  • @Washington(10-14-18) L 17 - 23
  • New Orleans(12-29-19) L 42 - 10

Last Meetings

  • Panthers @ Saints 24-27
  • Saints @ Panthers 42-10
  • Panthers @ Saints 31-34
  • Panthers @ Saints 33-14
  • Saints @ Panthers 12-9
  • Panthers @ Saints 26-31
  • Panthers @ Saints 21-31
  • Saints @ Panthers 34-13
  • Saints @ Panthers 20-23
  • Panthers @ Saints 38-41

Last Injuries

Carolina Panthers

  • Donte Jackson

    Ques Week 14 | questionable

    Jackson has been absent from the lineup during the previous two games due to turf toe, and it is undetermined if he will play against the Broncos in Week 14.

  • DJ Moore

    Ques Week 14 | questionable

    Moore left the last game with an ankle injury, and it is unknown if he will be good to go for Week 14 against the Broncos.

  • Bravvion Roy

    Ques Week 14 | questionable

    Roy was forced from the last game with an injured elbow, and it remains to be seen if he will lace up versus the Broncos in Week 14.

  • Dennis Daley

    Ques Week 14 | questionable

    Daley missed the previous game as he is going through the concussion protocol, and there is no indication if he will clear in time for Week 14 versus the Broncos.

  • Sam Franklin

    Ques Week 14 | questionable

    Franklin has missed the last two games due to an ankle injury, and it has yet to be established if he will take on the Broncos in Week 14.

  • Yetur Gross-Matos

    Out indefinitely | I-R

    Gross-Matos has been entered on the Injured Reserve/COVID-19 list, and it is uncertain when he will return to the field.

  • Marquis Haynes

    Prob Sun | probable

    Haynes is projected to be available Sunday versus the Vikings despite a shoulder injury.

  • Brandon Zylstra

    Prob Sun | probable

    Zylstra is expected to be active for Sunday's matchup against the Vikings despite a shoulder injury.

New Orleans Saints

  • Andrus Peat

    Ques Sun | questionable

    Peat missed the previous game with a concussion, and it is unknown if he will be cleared in time for Sunday's matchup versus the Falcons.

  • Ty Montgomery

    Ques Sun | questionable

    Montgomery missed the last game with a hamstring injury, and it has yet to be determined if he will line up against the Falcons on Sunday.

  • Sheldon Rankins

    Ques Sun | I-R

    Rankins has been placed on the Injured Reserve/Designated for Return list after recovering from MCL sprain. The team has two weeks to activate him.

  • Derrick Kelly

    Out indefinitely | I-R

    Kelly has been entered on the Injured Reserve/COVID-19 list, and it is unclear how long it will take for him to pass protocol.

  • Deonte Harris

    Ques Sun | questionable

    Harris has a stinger and was inactive for the previous game. It remains to be seen if he will recover to face the Falcons on Sunday.

  • Terron Armstead

    Out indefinitely | I-R

    Armstead has popped up on the Injured Reserve/COVID-19 list and will miss an unknown length of time.

  • Janoris Jenkins

    Ques Sun | questionable

    Jenkins was forced from the previous game with a knee injury, and it is uncertain if he will be cleared to face the Falcons on Sunday.

  • Marquez Callaway

    Ques Sun | questionable

    Callaway was forced to leave the previous game with a sprained knee, and it is unknown if it will impede his status for Sunday's showdown versus the Falcons.

New Orleans Saints vs. Carolina Panthers

Drew Brees threw three touchdown passes as the New Orleans Saints geared up for the postseason by smashing the host Carolina Panthers 42-10 in the regular-season finale Sunday afternoon at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C.

New Orleans (13-3), aiming for a first-weekend bye and potentially overall homefield advantage, would have to await results involving Green Bay and the San Francisco-Seattle game to determine its NFC seed.

Brees finished 19-for-30 for 253 yards.

The Panthers (5-11) lost their eighth game in a row as they finished in last place in the NFC South. They were 0-4 under interim coach Perry Fewell since the firing of coach Ron Rivera.

New Orleans running back Alvin Kamara rushed for two touchdowns, scoring from 15 and 1 yards for the first two touchdowns of the game.

Linebacker A.J. Klein, a former Panther, intercepted a Will Grier pass and returned it 14 yards for a second-quarter touchdown.

Brees threw second-quarter touchdown passes to Tre'Quan Smith for 1 yard and to Jared Cook for 21 yards.

The Saints held a 35-0 lead by late in the second quarter on the way to sweeping the season series from the Panthers. Carolina finally scored on Joey Slye's 23-yard field goal with 36 seconds left in the first half.

In the third quarter, Brees connected with Taysom Hill for a 45-yard touchdown play.

Quarterback Kyle Allen was 25 of 41 for 295 yards for the Panthers. He was intercepted in the end zone on the team's final possession of the season.

Grier, starting in his second NFL game and his first at home, exited in the first half with a foot injury. Grier was 1-for-8 for 4 yards before departing.

Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey scored on a 1-yard run in the third quarter. He finished with 26 yards on nine carries and 72 yards on seven catches. He became the third player in NFL history with 1,000 rushing yards and 1,000 receiving yards in the same season, joining Marshall Faulk (1999) and Roger Craig (1985).

Carolina struggled to get a first down in the first half, going deep into the second quarter with only one first down -- and that came via a penalty.

--Field Level Media