Poof, just like that the 2019 NFL regular season is over. For a 2nd straight year the Saints went 13-3, but ended up the #3 seed in the NFC. They are behind the 49ers and Packers, who have identical records, but hold different tie breakers over New Orleans. How does Coach Sean Payton feel about now knowing where they stand and who they are going to play?
“We're excited about it. I liked that we're playing on Sunday,” explained Payton. “We’ll have a fairly normal routine relative to the schedule we are used to. We’ll get on the tape and start working heavy on Minnesota these next few days and get ready to put together a good practice week and a good plan for Sunday.
The Vikings are a team Payton is fairly familiar with having played against them 4 times since good friend Mike Zimmer became their head coach in 2014. Does this year’s 10-6 Minnesota look much different?
“Well, we know this. We know there's some similarities in the structure defensively,” Payton said. “Zimm’s been there that whole time and he's actively involved in what they do defensively. I'm sure there's some nuances offensively. I felt they’ve rushed the ball real well this year.”
Minnesota rested running back Dalvin Cook who has been out with a shoulder injury. He ended up with 1,135 yards rushing and 13 TDs this year along with 519 yards receiving. The passing game is led by QB Kirk Cousins who threw for 3,603 yards, 26 TD and 6 INTs for an offense that averaged 25 points game.
The Saints have opened as a 7 point favorite in Las Vegas for Sunday’s noon kickoff in the Superdome.