They finished with the same record in the NFC South. On Sunday, they’ll meet again to decide who moves on to the Divisional Round. The New Orleans Saints host the Carolina Panthers, kicking off from the Superdome at 4:40 PM ET on FOX; at press time, the Saints are 7-point home favorites, up from –6 at the open.
While both teams shared a record of 11-5 SU and 9-7 ATS, it was the Saints winning the NFC South after taking both regular-season games from Carolina. Improved running has helped turn the Saints into one of the best teams in the league this season. When they met at the Superdome in Week 13, New Orleans prevailed 31-21 as a 6-point chalk, getting rushing touchdowns from both their Pro Bowl tailbacks: Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara.
Getting their defense sorted out has been even more important to New Orleans. The Panthers’ offense, however, has been mediocre at best the past couple of seasons; QB Cam Newton hasn’t played like the man who was named league MVP in 2015, and one of his top targets from last year, WR Ted Ginn Jr. (54 catches), is now a member of the Saints.