Last season, the Saints’ Super Bowl hoped to end with a seven-point preference when they entered the first round of the playoffs against the Vikings when they lost to the Vegas team. This season, if the Saints lose to their seven-point favorites in the Christmas game against the Vikings, their hopes of gaining home court advantage in the playoffs will end.
The Vikings-Saints game is of great significance to the Saints, because the victory allowed them to compete for the first seed in the NFC, which made them the only goodbye to the NFC championship in conference and home court advantage. But the loss freed the saints from the struggle for the first seed.
The loss also means that the Saints may still end up in second place in the NFC South, and must continue to advance in the pass round of the playoffs. The Saints have a game lead over the Pirates and have a tiebreaker advantage, but if the Saints lose today, the Pirates can survive: if the Saints lose the last two, and The Buccaneers won the last two, and Tampa Bay took the division.
Therefore, the saints cannot ignore the pirates. They may have learned this lesson in the playoffs last season.