The New Orleans Saints finished the 2015 season with a 7-9 record and a defense that many online football betting critics considered to be the worst in the history of the NFL. Now, three weeks into the 2016 season, it seems the Saints are hell-bent on putting up an equally disappointing on defense this year. While that may not be a surprise, there is a bombshell in the NFC South. The Carolina Panthers, a team one-win removed from being undefeated in 2015, is currently ranked third in the NFC South. It’s safe to say that not too many odds makers could’ve foreseen Carolina struggling this much so far this season. But what the Saints can take away from this is that the South is up for grabs. The Falcons currently sit atop the division with a 2-1 record, and although New Orleans is winless so far this season, it’s still early in the year and any team in the South could come away with it. In Week 4 the Saints will have to face off against Drew Brees’ former team, the San Diego Chargers. Brees spent 5 years with the Chargers, before flocking to New Orleans and becoming the face of the franchise. No doubt tensions will be high as both Phillip Rivers and Brees will try to lead their team to victory. Let’s check the odds across the best football betting sites, to see which quarterback the odds makers are favoring in Sunday’s contest.
Week 4 – Sunday the 2nd of October
San Diego Chargers -4 (-105) 53 ½ (-110) -190
New Orleans Saints +4 (-115) 53 ½ (-110) +170
Heading into this weekend, the online football betting odds are pegging the Chargers as the slight favorite in this contest. Both the Chargers and the Saints find themselves in a similar predicament; a high-powered offense puts them in a position to win the game, but a terrible showing on defense usually end up costing them the contest. On offense San Diego is averaging 29 points per game (3rd best average in the league) while on defense the Chargers are giving up 24.3 points per game (19th in the league). San Diego’s Week 4 opponent, the Saints, has similar averages. Right now New Orleans is averaging 26.3 points per game, which ranks them 9th in the league, while on the other side of the ball New Orleans is giving up 32 points per game, which places them as the second worst defense in the league. With both teams sporting poor defenses and high-powered offenses, this Sunday’s matchup is bound to be a shootout. With that in mind, picking over 54 points on the totals line might not be a terrible idea.
Since both teams are similar, they should employ similar strategies to win the game. Both Rivers and Brees can carve up a defense for 4 quarters, so trying to stop either will prove fruitless, the best each team can do is slow the other one down. And the best way to neutralize an aerial assault is by removing the running game. Whichever defense forces the other team to become one-dimensional on offense should come out on top this Sunday. The Chargers are better than the Saints at running the ball, and this should paint them as a clear online football betting favorites over the winless Saints.