The New Orleans Saints (11-4) are on a mission to secure the NFC South against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-11) at Raymond James Stadium. On paper, the Saints are a 7-point favorite and appear on track to accomplish the task when considering Tampa Bay has lost five straight games. But with a healthy Jameis Winston back in the lineup after a three-game absence, the Buccaneers have been very competitive in the past four games -- losing by a combined 15 points -- and played tight games against the Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers. Given the Buccaneers' recent performances with Winston under center, the Saints know the path to a division title won't be easy. "I will say having just done the third-down report, in the last month they are converting over 50 percent on third down," Saints coach Sean Payton said. "They have been as good as anyone in football. "I think he's (Winston) playing some of his better football right now. They were in every way, shape or form to win the Carolina game and should have won it probably but they didn't."
Saints' path to potential NFC South title goes through 'dangerous' Buccaneers
New Orleans Times-Picayune | Dec 31