NFL Prediction: Minnesota Vikings @ New Orleans Saints

The Minnesota Vikings had come all the way back from a dreadful 1-5 start, getting to 6-6 after an overtime win over Jacksonville two weeks ago. Since then, though, they have lost at Tampa Bay and then at home to Chicago this past week, as their bid to turn that ugly start into a wild card berth seems to be flying off the rails. Jazz Sports offers a generous welcome bonus (max bonus $1000).

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Next up is a trip to New Orleans to take on the Saints, who also find themselves on a two-game losing streak, having been upset in Philadelphia by the Eagles and then falling to Kansas City in a nailbiter last Sunday. The last time Minnesota played in the Superdome, they upset New Orleans in the wild card round of the playoffs last season.

Can they pull off another stunner, or will the Saints take care of business? Don’t miss our preview.

Minnesota Vikings at New Orleans Saints (Friday, December 25)

When: Friday, December 25, 2020, 4:30 pm ET
Where: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans
TV: FOX / NFL Network
Radio: Westwood One
JAZZ Sports Odds: Saints -7 / Total 52*

Why the Vikings Will Win

The Minnesota offense has shown it can be explosive, both on the ground and through the air. Dalvin Cook has run for 1,484 yards and 15 touchdowns, as the team averages 147.7 rushing yards per game. Kirk Cousins has thrown 29 touchdown passes – but his 13 interceptions are a bit high. In his last four games, Cousins has thrown nine touchdown passes, and his top targets have been Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson – although Jefferson cussed out his quarterback after missing him on a play in the team’s loss to the Bears.

On defense, the Vikings have been spotty, allowing 27.7 points per contest. Yannick Ngakoue has been stout in the pass rush, leading the team with five sacks, and Harrison Smith leads the Vikings with four interceptions. The Vikings have covered the spread in four of their last five road games – and in five of their last seven games against the Saints in New Orleans.

Why the Saints Will Win

The Superdome has been kind to the Saints once again this year, as they had won four home games in a row before losing to the Chiefs. Drew Brees has returned from rib fractures and a collapsed lung to lead the offense, and while he started awkwardly against Kansas City, he shook off the rust later in the game. Emmanuel Sanders and Alvin Kamara have been the top two receivers for New Orleans, and the return of Michael Thomas gives Brees yet another option.

On defense, the Saints are among the league leaders, permitting 21.2 points and 306.4 yards per contest. Trey Hendrickson has terrorized opposing quarterbacks this season, posting 12 ½ sacks, and Marcus Williams leads the Saints with three picks. New Orleans has covered the spread in five of their last seven games overall and in four of their last five games as a favorite.

The Final Word

Take a close look at the line on this game. The Saints are inconsistent, and if the line gets close to a touchdown or more, then consider the Vikings to cover. Even though the Vikings have taken bad losses this year, they tend to play the Saints well.

*Odds are subject to change.

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