The NFC South is a wide-open division, and all four teams could win the division title
The NFC South is weirdly one of the most competitive divisions in the NFL right now, but not because it has four extremely talented teams. No, the reason it is so competitive is that all four teams in the division are pretty average, as none of them are projected to win ten games next season. Let’s break down the NFC South and see what we should expect from each team in the division next season
1. New Orleans Saints
2022 Record: 7-10
2023 Projected Win Total: 9.5
Key Additions: Derek Carr, Jamaal Williams, Nathan Shepard, Khalen Saunders, and Bryan Breese
Key Losses: David Onyemata, Kaden Elliss, Andy Dalton, and Marcus Davenport
The New Orleans Saints won just seven games last season, but they are in a prime position to win the NFC South after signing Derek Carr in free agency. While Carr’s production fell off last year, he has consistently produced like an above-average quarterback, and he could return to that level of play surrounded by talented players like Chris Olave, Michael Thomas, and Alvin Kamara.
It will be interesting to see how well the Saints’ defense plays next season. Last season, they had arguably a top-ten defense, ranking eighth in the league in points allowed per play. After losing David Onyemata, Kaden Elliss, and Marcus Davenport in free agency, their defense will probably take a step back.
However, they still have a lot of talent on that side of the ball, including Marshon Lattimore, Cameron Jordan, Demario Davis, Tyrann Mathieu, and Marcus Maye. Their pass rush will likely be worse next season, which will hurt their defensive output. Still, they have the pieces to be really good in coverage, and they should have an above-average defense.
I doubt the Saints are going to be a great team next season, mainly because I’m not very confident in Derek Carr, and I’m not sure what we can expect from him moving forward. He could have a strong season, though, and if he can get back to playing at a high level, the Saints could have a winning record again.