Sure, most analysts wouldn't pick this game for anything. It is just another divisional game. But, the two teams sit on the bottom of the NFC South. They are fighting in a close team that currently looks like so.
Team W L
Panthers 6 2
Bucs 6 3
Falcons 5 3
Saints 4 4
Indeed, they are barely at the bottom.
Sadly, both the teams will be sweating hard this week. The Panthers play, how should I say this, a pathetic Raiders who have tied an unknown knot around themselves. The Buccaneers have a week off though, giving both teams a solid spot at grabbing a wild card seat. The NFC West and NFC South teams that could go for wild card are currently 4-4 and 2-6, giving the NFC East the only other division with a wild card chance.
This game needs to be won by both teams. If the Falcons win, they will be back to even with the Buccaneers. It would give them a good remaining schedule that includes two key games against the Buccaneers, Saints and Panthers.
If the Saints win, they have equalled the Falcons record and only one behind the Buccaneers. They also have a tough schedule, including a Bucs game and a Falcons game. Not to mention the final game of the season against the Panthers AT HOME!
This game could be huge. To me, it decides how they will do in their end stretch of the season.
Things to Remember
Drew Brees might be the MVP this year and passing better than anyone, but Matt Ryan has been an extremely effective thrower. He will be the Rookie of the Year in my eyes, and has been great in the clutch.
Reggie Bush has been ineffective in the running game, becoming more of a receiver. McAllister was just convicted for the no-no drugs. On the Falcons side? Michael Turner has found a team where he can head the running game, and he likes it! He will have a much better day than the Saints running backs.
Both teams have a mid-league defense. Thing to remember is the Atlanta secondary is better then their running defense. This could slow down Drew Brees a little. Well, maybe a little!
THING TO REMEMBER THE MOST: It is a Atlanta home game. You don't think they want to revenge last year.
I want to watch this game. It will be close, and a good watch.
Atlanta: 34 Saints: 27