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NFL playoff picture: Who to root for in Week 16 if you are a New Orleans Saints fan

Week 16 is here and the New Orleans Saints are in a battle for a wild card berth. Who should Saints fans root for to help their chances?

 a fan dressed as the grinch looks on during a game featuring the New Orleans Saints and Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium. Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

The New Orleans Saints come into Week 17 still in the Wild Card race, but things are definitely troublesome, as COVID-19 has taken out their starting and backup quarterbacks for Week 16. That means we’ll see rookie Ian Book take on the Miami Dolphins on Monday Night Football.

But we aren’t here to talk about the Saints vs. Dolphins, because if you’re reading this, you’re probably a Saints fan looking for a rooting guide for all of the other games that might impact the Saints chances of securing a spot in the playoffs.

The Saints are 7-7 and tied with two other NFC teams, the Eagles and Vikings. Right now, those two teams hold the tie-breakers over the Saints, pushing them into ninth on the playoff rankings. Only seven teams get in.

The Saints already had one game go their way this week, as the Titans beat the 49ers on Thursday night. That loss pushed the 49ers to 8-7 and sixth in the playoff rankings.

Giants at Eagles
Rams at Vikings

These two games are the most important for Saints fans to send their precious good vibes toward, as wins for the Giants and Rams give New Orleans room to move into a playoff spot with a win.

The Rams are -3.5 favorites to win, but the Giants are 10-point underdogs with Jake Fromm starting against the Eagles. The Saints already lost to the Eagles, so they will always hold that tie-breaker, making a good showing out of Fromm in company a much needed Christmas present for Saints fans.

Washington at Cowboys
Lions at Falcons

Washington and the Falcons both sit at 6-8. They are the two teams just below the Saints in the playoff race and one gets a tough matchup and the other not as tough.

Washington goes to Dallas and are 10-point underdogs, while the Falcons are at home against the Lions and are 7-point favorites over at DraftKings Sportsbook. The Lions did just upset the Cardinals, but Jared Goff is on the COVID-19 list and Tim Boyle will get the start.

In the end, a win on Monday Night Football would keep the Saints firmly in the playoff race, but if these games could all go their way, a loss wouldn’t be the end of the world either.