Saints hope to stay in hunt for NFC's No. 1 playoff seed by beating Panthers

Saints (11-4) at Panthers (5-10)

4:25 p.m. ET | FOX

Matchup rating: 73.1 | Spread: NO -7 (47.5)

What to watch for: Carolina quarterback Teddy Bridgewater's protection will be down to a fifth left tackle (converted guard Michael Schofield). The Saints have one of best pass-rushes in the NFL, ranking eighth in sacks with 42. It could be a long day for Bridgewater, who has struggled under duress. -- David Newton

Bold prediction: Saints running back Alvin Kamara will score fewer than six touchdowns! But undrafted rookie Saints receiver Marquez Callaway will catch the first touchdown pass of his career as the Saints become the first team ever to sweep the rest of the NFC South division in a season. -- Mike Triplett

Stat to know: Kamara has 59 career touchdowns. With a score in Week 17, he'd become the third player in NFL history to score 60 times in his first four seasons, joining Terrell Davis (61) and LaDainian Tomlinson (60).

Playoff/draft picture: The Saints won the NFC South and can still clinch the No. 1 seed in the conference with help. They need a win, a Green Bay loss and a Seattle win, though FPI says that's only 14.7% likely to happen. The Panthers are projected to have the eighth overall draft pick next April. FPI is still giving them an 8.9% chance to land a top-five spot and says they are 78.9% likely to hold in the top 10 this week.

Injuries: Saints | Panthers

What to know for fantasy: Panthers receiver D.J. Moore has underwhelmed lately, with a missed game and a pair of single-digit performances over the Panthers' past four games. But his best game of the season did come in Week 7 against these Saints (23.3 fantasy points). See Week 17 rankings.

Betting nugget: Road-field advantage? The Saints are 17-6 ATS in road games since 2018. Read more.

Triplett's pick: Saints 27, Panthers 16

Newton's pick: Saints 38, Panthers 10

FPI prediction: NO, 72.8% (by an average of 8.1 points)

Matchup must-reads: Are we really in the NFL?' Saints recall nomadic 2005 season after Hurricane Katrina ... Panthers could go with substance over style on Moton payday ... Why Kamara's monster game was so important to Saints, Brees ... McCaffrey finishing 2020 season on sideline