New Orleans go to Green Bay and the prospect of losing a fourth consecutive game is very real, but the Saints could be worth a dabble on the handicap market, says Luca Bercelli
"New Orleans are not bad players and one day they’ll remember how they won all those games."
A pre-season analysis of this game would have you anticipating a points-fest between two serious Superbowl contenders. Green Bay have been backed at as low as 6.25/1 on our overall market, and the Saints have been done at 10.519/2. They are now 10.09/1 and 120.0119/1 respectively after shocking starts.
Alarm bells are thus ringing in both camps, more so in New Orleans where a 0-4 start is a distinct possibility for a team that has won 37 regular season games in the last three years.
Maybe they have regressed massively post-'Bounty-gate' but with a monster still taking the snaps at quarterback (Drew Brees) there could be plenty of life left in the old Saint yet.
Having their coach watch all the games from the comfort of his own settee is not ideal and there's no doubt that the team have struggled for direction in 2012. However, they're not bad players and one day they'll remember how they won all those games.
Green Bay did look to be regaining some momentum before they were mugged by Seattle in the final seconds on Monday Night Football. They can move the ball and also have a stud quarterback but their problem is exactly the same one as the Saints; a powder puff offensive line that would have a problem stopping Graham Norton let alone a pack of 18-stone granite pass-rushers getting to their star player.
I can't escape the memory of both star QBs basically running for their lives for most of last week, especially Aaron Rodgers. Things must be bad in your O-line when your right tackle is quoted as saying: "I was just out there. I don't know what I was doing out there."
With this in mind both teams might look for a tad more of a running game and we could be in for less total points than we might expect. A high under/over line of 53.5 is a risky sell but it's a sell at around the 2.01/1 mark.
Although I'm not writing New Orleans off just yet and taking them to win with handicap start of 7.5 @ 2.01/1, a sensible saver to have would be Green Bay on the fourth Quarter Moneyline. Without a real coach making adjustments late in the game, don't expect the Saints to finish strongly. They fizzled out like one of my garden fireworks when scoring zero points in the second half last week. They'll do better this week but the Pack should outscore them in the fourth.