Tuesday, October 11, 2011

JZN NFL Predictions vs. Spread; New Orleans Saints at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Week 6, 2011-12)

The New Orleans Saints will look to get a head start on the division race with a second consecutive road victory against a NFC South opponent. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers look like they’ve taken a step backwards this season.

The early spread on this game is Saints (-4). Here are some of the key aspects of the game and what to watch out for in pick’ em leagues. All lines from Y! Sports and Injury Reports from CBS Sports as of October 11, 2011. Always update yourselves with injury lines because they’ll change throughout the week.

Current Personal Picks Record (Straights Only)
New Orleans Saints 4-1
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2-3

Key Injuries
RB LeGarrette Blount, OT James Lee, DL Gerald McCoy (Doubtful), LB Quincy Black, LB Zac Diles, C Olin Kreutz, T Zac Strief, LB Will Herring

Keys to the Game
  • Tampa Bay vs. New Orleans: Speed
  • Can the Buccaneers force some takeaways?
  • Will there be a lasting effect from the Buccaneers’ 48-3 loss to the San Francisco 49ers?
  • Tanard Jackson makes his return from suspension.
  • Can the Buccaneers score with Drew Brees and Sean Payton?
  • Buccaneers: Slow start or regression?
  • No. 2 Offense vs. No. 23 Defense
  • Can the Saints’ rushing defense contain LeGarrette Blount?

Summary
The Saints pulled off a 31-6 victory in Tampa Bay last season. While the Buccaneers won the regular-season finale, the Saints pulled their starters during the second half as they didn’t want to suffer any injuries before the playoffs.

The Saints had 212 rushing yards in that initial meeting. Brees completed passes to ten different receivers. The Saints endured nearly 100 yards worth of penalties. They were able to complete 75% of their third-down conversions.

I just feel like the Saints have too much firepower and they’re playing too well for the Buccaneers here. The Saints have more talent and one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks. The Buccaneers are coming off a 48-3 defeat and another close call against a winless Indianapolis Colts’ team.

Final Predictions:
Against the Spread: New Orleans Saints (-4)
Straight: New Orleans Saints 31, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 17

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