After losing on Sunday night, the Rams have handed the NFC back to the Saints.
The biggest winner of Sunday night’s Rams-Eagles game was roughly 2,000 miles away in New Orleans.
Los Angeles losing back-to-back weeks means the New Orleans Saints once again hold the cards to controlling home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs. In other words, after Monday night’s game in Charlotte, there’s a decent chance the Saints don’t play another road game until Super Bowl 52 in Atlanta.
This is extremely bad news for anyone else in the NFC hoping to make it to the Super Bowl.
In home playoff games over his career with the Saints, Brees has thrown for 1,529 yards with 12 touchdowns and just one interception. In that time, New Orleans has never ended a playoff run at home, only losing in games on the road. Simply put, they’re unstoppable in the Superdome, a place where opponents come to lay their playoff dreams to rest.
Of course, there are concerns to be had about what the Saints have looked like recently. Touted as the highest scoring offense in football, the Saints have amassed just 471 passing yards over the last three games. That comes on the heels of the Drew Brees posting 638 yards over the two games prior to the slump.
More unsettling is the fact that the Saints only posted 38 points in those two weeks after not scoring fewer than 30-points the last five weeks. The loss to the Cowboys is forgivable on grounds that the Dallas defense was lights out, but the slow start against a terrible Buccaneers defense is troubling.
As alarming a trend that may seem, it’s one that we can’t assume is the way things will be moving forward. With the Saints being a different beast at home, it’s hard to see any team coming into New Orleans with enough to win. Chicago has a world-class defense but Mitchell Trubisky is a liability. Dallas has already beaten the Saints but the game wasn’t in the Superdome, while the Vikings and Seahawks are wild cards and could keep the game close but don’t have enough on either side of the ball to keep up with Brees. If the Rams have to go back to New Orleans, where they already lost this year, the recent sketchiness of Jared Goff is cause for great concern.
In order to lose control of the top seed, the Saints would have to lose two of their last three games. Things haven’t been peachy for New Orleans as of late, but the stars seem to have once again aligned in its favor.