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What's the Most Anticipated Saints Game of 2022?

There's plenty of strong candidates for the Saints game everyone's looking forward to most this season, and picking just one is pretty challenging.

We're nearly two weeks removed from the NFL Schedule dropping, and the anticipation for the season to begin has only risen from there. The Saints started work at OTAs this week, part of three weekly sessions that will lead us into a Mandatory Minicamp in mid-June. The Saints News Network Krewe got together recently to weigh in with their thoughts on their most anticipated game of 2022. Which one is yours?

Trey Hendrickson (91)

Brendan Boylan - Bengals

It is safe to say that games against Atlanta and Tampa Bay are always the first circled on the calendar by Saints fans when the season schedule is released. And while that is true for this season just like any other, there is one game that most of Louisiana is looking forward to more than any other, and that is when the Bengals travel to New Orleans on October 16th. 

Anytime the defending AFC champions march into the Superdome, it is a game that carries a lot of weight and provides a measuring stick to where the Saints are amongst the NFL contenders. However, this game also brings the return of 2019 Heisman Winner Joe Burrow and 2019 Fred Biletnikoff Award winner Ja’marr Chase to Louisiana for the first time since leaving LSU for the NFL. 

Both members of the Bengals will more than likely receive a huge ovation from the crowd, but as soon as the ball is kicked off, Who Dat Nation will bring the noise and make Burrow’s homecoming a potentially miserable one.

New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan (94)

Bob Rose - Bucs

I'm most looking forward to the Tampa Bay showdown on September 18. It's the second week of the season, but the home opener for the 2022 Saints. Not only will the Dome be rocking, but even more so because it will be against a division rival. It's also a key early season test against a Super Bowl contender with a Hall of Fame quarterback and talent all over the board. 

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The Saints could match the Bucs' talent, but this is their chance to show that they still deserve mentioned among the legitimate contenders. Tampa Bay's fans try so hard to make this matchup a rivalry. The reality is that this has been a bitter, intense, and physical battle between these teams for the last two years. 

You've got to believe that Jameis Winston has a major chip on his shoulder against his previous employer. And also the team that ended his season a year ago. Ditto for Tom Brady, who has been battered and befuddled by Dennis Allen's defense in five meetings against them since coming to Tampa Bay.

Matthew Stafford (9)

Kyle T. Mosley - Rams

Choosing one game off the New Orleans Saints schedule is brutal. You can't wait for Joe Burrow and Ja'Marr Chase returning the Big Easy as a prime contender. Also, you never can wait to have the Bucs, Dirty Birds, and Panthers in their NFC South Bruise Fests! But, I would have to believe by Week 11, the Saints hosting the Super Bowl Champion Rams will be a pivotal contest. 

After eleven games, you'll see two contenders battle in the Who Dat Nation, with the winner holding a slight edge in the playoff race. It will be Matthew Stafford vs. the Saints' elite defense and Jameis Winston proving to his doubters that he's the man against Aaron Donald's crew. Rams vs. Saints — is always interesting, entertaining, and dramatic!

There's tons of good games on the schedule for the Saints this season, and it's just a shame that they're getting only three in the primetime spotlight. That can certainly change with the NFL's Flex Scheduling starting in Week 5, but going with what we know about the schedule and how things have taken shape, I'm picking the Saints at Buccaneers on Monday Night Football in December.

Going into Week 13, it's the game right before the bye week. It's a big opportunity for whoever wins to potentially control the division outlook. Tampa closes out the year hosting the Panthers and traveling to take on the Falcons in Weeks 17 and 18, while the Saints host the Falcons in Week 15 and Panthers in Week 18. Hopefully, we'll get the Jameis Winston returning to face his old team storyline that we didn't get in 2021.

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