NFL Week 1 Pick: New Orleans Saints vs. Green Bay Packers
Point spread by VietBet: Green Bay -4
The 2011 NFL regular season gets underway this Thursday night in a showdown between the last two Super Bowl champions, when the New Orleans Saints head into Lambeau Field to take on the Green Bay Packers. Kick-off is slated for 8:30 p.m. (ET) and the game will be broadcast nationally on NBC.
New Orleans will look to quickly erase the memory of an unexpected 41-36 loss to Seattle as a 9.5-road favorite in the wildcard round of last year’s playoffs. This followed an 11-5 regular season record, including a 6-2 record straight-up on the road.
Running back Reggie Bush is no longer with the team after signing with Miami, but the addition of mark Ingram in the first round of the draft should help improve a Saints’ running game that was ranked 28th in the NFL last year. Quarterback Drew Brees will still be directing a passing game that was ranked third in the league. He ended the year with the most passing yards in the NFC with 4,620 yards while completing a league-high 68.1 percent of his throws.
Green Bay’s season ended with the Vince Lombardi Trophy back in its possession, which was even more impressive considering that a good chunk of its roster was sidelined with season-ending injuries. The Packers won the Super Bowl as a wildcard team with an overall record of 10-6, but they were tough to beat at Lambeau with a 7-1SU record at home.
Aaron Rodgers had an equally impressive performance as Green Bay’s quarterback, but his real claim to fame last season was a postseason run where he completed 68.2 percent of his attempts for 1,094 yards and nine TD’s. Having running back Ryan Grant and tight end Jermichael Finley back in the lineup will only make a very good offense that much better.
The Saints are 5-1 against the spread in its last six opening day games and the total has gone ‘over’ in four of its last five road games overall.
The Packers are 4-0 ATS in their last four season openers and the total has gone ‘over’ in five of their last six home games overall.
Head-to-head, the favorite in this series has a 4-1 edge ATS in the last five meetings. The total went ‘over’ in all five games.
Green Bay keeps things going at home as it comes away with fifth-straight opening day victory that covers the four-point spread.
The NFL Pick: Green Bay 24 New Orleans 17
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