New York Giants (0-3, 1-2 ATS) at New Orleans Saints (2-1, 2-1), 1 p.m.
Implied Team Totals: Giants 17, Saints 24.5
Spread/Total Movements: 8 to 7.5, 43.5 to 41.5
Giants Injuries to Watch: LB Blake Martinez (ACL, IR), WR Sterling Shepard (hamstring, out), WR Darius Slayton (hamstring, out)
Saints Injuries to Watch: LT Terron Armstead (elbow, out), C Erik McCoy (calf, out)
Brolley’s Giants Stats and Trends
The Giants are 2-5 ATS in their last seven games.
New York is 13-3 toward unders in its last 16 games, including a 5-1 under stretch in its last six road games.
New York is 12-5 ATS in road games since 2019 but they’re 5-12 outright in those contests.
Daniel Jones came up a bit small as soon as the masses trusted him enough to play him against the Falcons in Week 3. He completed 24/35 passes for 266 scoreless yards and he added 8/39 rushing, but he was put in a tough spot with two of his top options Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton each leaving early with hamstring injuries. New Orleans is allowing just 14.0 points per game (3rd-fewest) and they picked off Mac Jones three times last week. The Saints are once suffocating the run, allowing just 2.5 YPC, and they’re middle of the pack with 5.0/36.0 receiving per game allowed to RBs.
Saquon Barkley is back to prime usage and the Giants signaled it was coming before the game by making Devontae Booker a healthy scratch. He saw season-highs in carries (16), targets (7), receptions (6), scrimmage yards (94), touchdowns (1), and snap share (86%) against the Falcons. He also led the Giants in routes (33) and he could remain an active piece in this passing attack if Shepard misses.
Kenny Golladay will need to step up with Shepard and Slayton unlikely to play this week, but he ran routes on just 71% of Jones’ dropbacks with his hip issue last week. He topped out at 4/64 receiving in Weeks 1 and 3 and he could see quite a bit of Marshon Lattimore this week. Davante Adams managed just 5/56 receiving in this matchup in Week 1.
The Giants may not have a choice but to get first-round pick Kadarius Toney involved this week out of the slot. He ran the most routes among Giants’ WRs last week with 31 but he managed just 2/16 receiving on three targets. Slot WR Jakobi Meyers posted 9/94 receiving in this matchup last week.
Evan Engram returned to the lineup after missing the first two games with a calf injury, and he ran a route on 71% of Jones’ dropbacks. He managed just 2/21 receiving on six targets (17% share) and he lost a fumble near the end of the first half, but Jones could have to go back to him with the current state of his receiving corps. Tight ends have been targeted 7.7 times per game against the Saints, but they’ve allowed just 4.3/43.0 receiving per game without a touchdown.
Brolley’s Saints Stats and Trends
The Saints will return to New Orleans after spending the first three weeks on the road after Hurricane Ida.
The Saints have played under the total in six straight games.
New Orleans is 10-4 ATS in its 14 games.
Alvin Kamara is the only fantasy-relevant Saint at this point with their run-heavy approach. He has more 20+ carry games this season (2) than he did in his first four seasons (1), but the shift in philosophy leaves him with less receiving production (10/62) than Derrick Henry (12/105) through three games. He should get plenty of run again this week as eight-point home favorites against a Giants’ defense that just lost LB Blake Martinez (ACL) for the season. The Giants are giving up a hefty 165.6 scrimmage yards per game to RBs in the early going.
Jameis Winston has attempted just 63 passes with a single-game high of 22 and he’s yet to top 150+ passing yards through three weeks. YUCK. WInston is only remotely fantasy relevant in the early going thanks to his league-leading 11.1% TD rate with 11 TDs on just 63 attempts. The Giants have given up multiple TD passes in every game this season.
The Saints are not only averaging just 21 pass attempts per game, but they’re also heavily rotating their WRs and TEs. Marquez Callaway finally topped 3+ FP with 4/41/1 receiving on five targets last week, but he ran a route on just 56% of Jameis’ dropbacks with 16. Deonte Harris (15), Adam Trautman (14), Kenny Stills (10), Chris Hogan (7), and Juwan Johnson (5) also saw limited run in Sean Payton’s heavy rotation. The Saints could also add Tre’Quan Smith (hamstring, IR) into the mix this week if he gets activated from the IR.
Barfield’s Pace and Tendencies
Week 1-3 – Pace (seconds in between plays): 27.3 (11th)
Week 1-3 – Plays per game: 65.7 (14th)
Week 1-3 – Pass: 61.5% (14th) | Run: 38.5% (19th)
Week 1-3 – Pace: 31.1 (29th)
Week 1-3 – Plays per game: 58.0 (32nd)
Week 1-3 – Pass: 46.0% (32nd) | Run: 54.0% (1st)
Do you think Sean Payton wants to keep his QB reigned in, or what? The Saints are fourth-from-last in pace, dead last in plays per game, and first in run rate over expectation (+10.4%) through three games and are in a perfect spot to continue their theme of playing slow and running a ton as 7.5-point home favorites over the Giants. New York’s implied team total (17.0) is the second-lowest on the slate – behind only the Texans (15.75) – and with the Saints defense getting healthier, this game could turn into a slopfest fast. This matchup is the fifth-worst in the pace/plays model to boot. It’s just gross all the way around.
Huber’s Key Matchup Notes
As crazy as it may seem, the Saints made the decision to use new CB Bradley Roby on only two snaps last week in order for Paulson Adebo to add to his experience in a breezy 28-13 victory over the Patriots. We will have no way of knowing what New Orleans’ plan will be prior to each game. If they do the same thing this week, WR Kenny Golladay will find himself with a far better matchup against Adebo.
Dolan’s Vantage Points
It’s hard to come up with a less appealing fantasy game across the board than this one for Week 4.
In last week’s spot against the Falcons, it was the Daniel Jones stream and DFS week, and though it wasn’t all his doing — Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton both left with hamstring injuries — he flopped, finishing as the QB22 on the week. Neither Shepard or Slayton will be out there this week, and the Saints are giving up the 3rd-fewest FPG to QBs this year. Pass.
I can get on board with Kenny Golladay as a WR3, but it’s not the easiest of matchups against this Saints secondary, and he’s still dealing with a hip injury (he has no injury designation). I am not an Evan Engram guy, but you can make a case for him. In his first game of the season, Engram ran a route on 31 of Jones’ 46 dropbacks. Of course, he caught just 2 of his 6 targets for 21 yards, and lost a fumble. The guy is very likely a bad football player, and the Saints give up the 9th-fewest FPG to opposing TEs. But they really need him this week. I’m just going to Pontius Pilate this and wash my hands of the situation — I’ve laid out the evidence, but use him at your own risk.
The guy who should be popping, at least in terms of usage, is Saquon Barkley. Saquon posted 16/51/1 rushing and 6/43 receiving on 7 targets while playing 86% of the snaps last week. His backup Devontae Booker was a healthy scratch, indicating the team feels great about Saquon’s health, and his 80% route rate on Jones dropbacks was second among all RBs in Week 3. Barkley’s snap rate (48% > 84% > 86%), routes run (17 > 32 > 37), and touches (11 > 15 > 22) have risen in three straight games. It’s still like pulling teeth because the Giant offense stinks, but with Shepard and Slayton both dealing with hamstring injuries that could cost them some time, Barkley is going to need to be a major weapon in the passing game. Fire him up as an RB1.
The Saints might be the worst team in all of fantasy outside the state of New Jersey. The fact is there’s one really good guy — Alvin Kamara — but even Kamara isn’t producing in the way we’d want. He’s got 66 opportunities in three games… but he has just 10 catches because Jameis Winston has an incredibly low 63 pass attempts in those three games. Derrick Henry has more catches! The Giants are giving up the 8th-most FPG to opposing RBs and the Saints are favored at home, so it’s a great spot, but this offense, frankly, stinks. Kamara is handling 77% of the Saints’ carries and a team-high 22% target share.
At WR and TE… lol. Brolley outlined above about the gross WR/TE rotation. If you’re playing any WR here it’s Marquez Callaway, but good luck. They’ve had a different target leader in every game — Callaway with 5 in Week 3, Kamara with 6 in Week 2, and Adam Trautman with 6 in Week 1.
There have been 165 instances of a player getting 7 or more targets in a single game this season.— Joe Dolan (@FG_Dolan) September 30, 2021
None of them have been New Orleans #Saints.
Only 11 instances since 2000 where a team attempted 23 passes or fewer for three consecutive games, the last being the 2012 Seahawks (of course) in Russell Wilson’s rookie year.
The 2021 Saints have attempted 21 < 22 < 21 passes through Week 3.
— John Daigle (@notJDaigle) September 27, 2021