When and where: October 27, 2019, Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, LA, 1:00 PM ET
The Teddy Bridgewater Show could be nearing an end when the New Orleans Saints host the visiting Arizona Cardinals. Quarterback Drew Brees, who has been sidelined with a thumb injury, is expected to return to practice this week with the hope of suiting up on Sunday. It would be bad news for the 3-3-1 Cardinals, who are rolling with three straight wins over the New York Giants, Atlanta Falcons and Cincinnati Bengals.
Since Brees went down with the injury in Week 2, Bridgewater has helped carry the Saints to five consecutive wins, including an impressive 36-25 road victory over the Chicago Bears.
Rookie Chase Edmonds arrives for the CardinalsDavid Johnson’s future replacement might have arrived for the Cardinals in the form of second-year running back Chase Edmonds. The former fourth-round draft pick ran all over the New York Giants defense last week with 27 carries for 126 yards and three touchdowns.
Johnson came into the game sparingly, but it has been reported he is still struggling with an ankle injury. He is officially listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Saints, but it’s likely he’ll either have limited snaps for a second straight week or sit the game out entirely. The Cardinals have already made the move to sign a couple more practice bodies at the running back position, which isn’t a good sign for Johnson’s availability.
Edmonds won’t have as many running opportunities against a stout Saints defensive front allowing an average of 90.6 rushing yards per game. So it will fall on Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury to get creative and figure out ways to get the ball into his playmaker’s hands in open space. Edmonds could be more productive in the passing game than he is on the ground, although the Cardinals shouldn’t abandon the run game entirely.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Cardinals will have the herculean task of slowing down returning quarterback Drew Brees, who plans to start in the game. Defensive end Chandler Jones has to lead the charge on the defensive front and get after Brees, while cornerback Patrick Peterson wins his one-on-ones with Saints star wideout Michael Thomas.
Cardinals’ linebacker Jordan Hicks didn’t practice on Wednesday due to a calf injury, and Haason Reddick has been limited with a knee injury. Both are listed as questionable for Sunday’s game.
Is Brees set to return?The Saints could be on the verge of juggernaut status with Brees setting his sights on returning on Sunday. We haven’t seen the team operate with the future Hall of Famer behind center since he exited the game against the Los Angeles Rams in Week 2 with a thumb injury. Teddy Bridgewater deserves a ton of credit for stepping in as a perfect replacement and helping lead the Saints to five consecutive wins. You can bet your bottom dollar teams will be knocking on his door after the season.
As far as Sunday’s game is concerned, Brees being back in the saddle gives the Saints offense that aura of invincibility again. Of course, they’ll need All-Pro running back Alvin Kamara healthy before things are completely back to normal. He is officially listed as questionable for the game, along with tight end Jared Cook. So Brees might have to lean on Latavius Murray more to spearhead the rushing attack.
Defensive end Cam Jordan will look to lead the attack on the defensive side of the ball against a pass-heavy offense that offers plenty of opportunities to get after the quarterback. However, it won’t be easy getting initial contact on a quarterback as good on his feet as Murray. The guys up front will have to swarm tackle and remain disciplined in limiting the rush lanes for Murray to scramble through.
- Cardinals are 1-5-1 ATS in their last 7 games after accumulating more than 150 yards rushing in their previous game.
- Cardinals are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 head-to-head meetings.
- Cardinals are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 head-to-head meetings in New Orleans.
- Saints are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games after scoring more than 30 points in their previous game.
- Saints are 20-6 ATS in their last 26 games following an ATS win.
- Saints are 5-2 ATS against a team with a losing record.
- Saints are 36-15 ATS in their last 51 games in October.