New Orleans Saints vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jacksonville Jaguars look for their second win of the season as they host the New Orleans Saints. The Saints are -6 point favorites over the Jaguars with an over/under point total set at 46.5.
Jacksonville Jaguars Head Coach Jack Del Rio is faced with the dilemma of having to rebuild and win at the same time as he has been given the ultimatum to win now or be gone. After letting David Garrard loose before the season started the Jags now turn to Blaine Gabbert who will be making his second NFL start. Thus far Gabbert has completed 63 percent of his passes for 191 yards with a TD and an interception while getting sacked three times. With a bigger emphasis on the Jacksonville running game Maurice Jones-Drew is averaging 4.7 yards per carry rushing for 307 yards and a touchdown. Mike Thomas has 15 catches this year, Deji Karim has six, and tight end Marcedes Lewis has just four. The Jaguars defense has three interceptions, one fumble recovery and three sacks and over all Jacksonville has a minus three turnover ratio. Daryl Smith has 19 tackles to lead Jacksonville while Paul Posluszny has 17 and Dawan Landy and Rashean Mathis both have 15. With low expectations and high demands Jacksonville sets up to surprise some teams this year.
The New Orleans Saints took a tough loss as they came up inches short in Green Bay on the opening night of the NFL season but since then the Saints have looked tough winning twice against two of the better teams in the NFL. Sean Peyton’s New Orleans offense is in mid-season form as they are third in the NFL in points per game with 34.7 and second in total yards averaging 437.7 per game. Drew Brees is off to a fast start completing 68.5 percent of his passes for 1059 yards with nine touchdowns and two interceptions while being sacked six times. Its running back by committee in New Orleans as Mark Ingram has the most carries averaging 3.6 yards per attempt, Pierre Thomas is averaging 4.8 yards per carry, and Darren Sproles primarily catches passes with 21 catches and 8 runs and a touchdown coming each way. Tight end Jimmy Graham has become one of Brees’ favorite targets with 14 catches and two touchdowns while Robert Meacham has 14 catches and three touchdowns and Devry Henderson has 12 catches and two touchdowns. Will Smith missed the first two games for the Saints defense and Jonathan Vilma was out last week but the Saints have 10 sacks, two interceptions, and three fumble recoveries as they have a minus two turnover ratio. Roman Harper has 23 tackles while Jo-Lonn Dunbar and Malcolm Jenkins each have 15. In order for the Saints to reach their goal of winning the Super Bowl they are going to need to win on the road and they have an opportunity to do that here.
Jacksonville is 2-5 against the spread when playing a team with a winning record, 1-5 against the spread in their last six games overall, and 0-4 against the spread in their last four games as an underdog. New Orleans is 10-4 against the spread in their last 14 games against a team with a winning record, 2-7 against the spread in their last nine games as a road favorite, and 1-9 against the spread against a team with a losing record.
The Jaguars best chance here is to keep the game low scoring and keep the Saints offense off of the field and look for them the run a lot and as we saw last week, they just don’t score much. With the total set at 46.5, this one should fall short of that number.