The New Orleans Saints (3-4) host the New York Giants (4-3) on Sunday for The Giants are 15-12 all-time against the Saints, but winless in the Superdome over the last 12 years.
Here's a short breakdown, what to expect, as well as a prediction.
Game: Week 8 vs. New Orleans
Last season: Did not play
Last meeting: Giants won, 52-27 (Dec. 9, 2012)
How the Giants will win: If the Giants can dictate the pace of the game. The Saints are vulnerable against both the run and the pass, and the Giants have the weapons to exploit them in both areas. Eli Manning, making his return trip to New Orleans, must be precise and smart with the football, orchestrate lengthy, methodical drives and capitalize in the red zone. The Giants offense have the advantage over this New Orleans defense, and must use that to win time of possession battle.
How the Saints will win: If the defense plays as opportunistic as it has the past two games. Against Atlanta and Indianapolis, the Saints defense forced a combined six turnovers and three in each game, not surprisingly both wins. The Saints offense has been productive all season long, but when they get contributions on the other side of the ball, they become a much more formidable opponent.
How the Giants will lose: If the Giants don't improve their rush defense. After an impressive start to the season in which they did not allow a 100-yard rusher, DeMarco Murray and Darren McFadden each eclipsed 100 yards in the last two weeks. In fact, the 49ers as a team racked up 124 yards on the ground, so three consecutive weeks the Giants defense has been gashed against the run. The Saints have weapons in Mark Ingram, C.J. Spiller and Khiry Robinson to do the same sort of damage, and the Giants will lose if they can't slow them down.
How the Saints will lose: If the Saints offense gives the Giants second and third opportunities. The Saints have turned the ball over 10 times in their four losses and, not surprisingly, once, in their three victories. Drew Brees is guilty of four interceptions this year, the same as Manning, and he'll face a Giants defense that's piled up 16 takeaways this year, good for fourth-best in the NFL.
Prediction: Giants 31, Saints 30
Why: Can the Giants snap their four-game losing skid in New Orleans? They're facing a team that is seemingly finding its stride at the halfway point in the season, and has just defeated a previously unbeaten Falcons team and the Indianapolis team that's supposed to win the AFC South. On the other hand, the Giants remain on top of a competitive NFC East, but have played up and down to their competition the last couple of weeks. With Manning, Odell Beckham Jr. and Orleans Darkwa set for a return trip to New Orleans, the Giants may get a bit of an emotional lift. The Saints don't have the same Dome-field advantage we're accustomed to them having, so it boils down to executing the game plan and playing well on the road.