and coveWhile there were great playoff races in both conferences, it was the NFC that was particularly fun to watch this season. There are a lot of very good teams in that conference this season, and it was a fight that went right down to the final weekend of the regular season. One team that really didn’t need to worry too much about their playoff spot was the Minnesota Vikings, as they punched their postseason ticket relatively early, winning the North in comfortable fashion. Their reward was a number two seed, and the guarantee of at least one home playoff game, which comes this weekend against the New Orleans Saints in the NFC Divisional Round. The Saints were one of the surprise teams of the season, but they are a surprise no more and are now a legitimate threat to upset the apple cart in the NFC and head to the Super Bowl. There are 4 good games on tap this weekend, but this is the one that perhaps promises to be the jewel in the crown. Can the dominant Minnesota defense slow down a superb Saints offense and cover the 4 point spread?

Saints vs. Vikings Divisional Game Info & NFL Odds

When: Sunday, January 14 at 4:40 PM EST
Where: US Bank Stadium, Minneapolis
Live Stream:  FOX Sports Go
NFL Betting Line: Vikings -4

Why bet on the New Orleans Saints

The Saints started out the season as everyone expected, struggling in the opening weeks, but once they settled into a groove, they quickly became a team to reckon with. Part of the problem for the New Orleans Saints in recent years is that they were forced to rely a little too heavily on the arm of Drew Brees, as they had no real defense or running game to speak of. Both of those problems have been solved this season, particularly the run game, which has featured the dynamic duo of Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara.

They have taken a load off the shoulders of Brees, allowing him to play with a lead and not have to throw all over the field to get his team back in the game. The Saints were forced to fight to the bitter end in the Wild Card Game last weekend, edging out the Carolina Panthers 31-26. This is going to be a much tougher task, as they are going against a run D that has allowed just 83 YPG on the ground. The Saints are 4-4 SU and ATS on the road this season.

Why bet on the c

The Minnesota Vikings are perhaps the least glamorous team in the playoffs, as they do not have very many household names in the line-up. They are also going with a QB in Case Keenum who would probably be #3 in their depth chart if Sam Bradford and Teddy Bridgewater were fit and ready to go. As it is, Keenum has been outstanding, even though he has to enter each new week with everyone waiting for his bubble to burst. That hasn’t happened, though, and Keenum has been brilliantly efficient, but perhaps more importantly, he has managed to steer clear of mistakes that could cost his team. The Vikings real strength is on the defensive side of the football, where they have allowed just a touch under 16 PPG. Minnesota is 7-1 SU and 6-2 ATS in their own building this season.

Minnesota Vikings 2018 NFL Divisional Round

Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction

The Saints have had no joy in their recent trips to Minnesota, winning just once in their last 7 visits there. I think the Vikings win and cover, and I believe the point total will go UNDER.

Predicted Score: New Orleans Saints 17 Minnesota Vikings 26