The season opener between the New Orleans Saints and the Inexperienced Bay Packers will be played in Jacksonville, Florida on Sept. 12 as town of New Orleans continues to take care of the aftermath of Hurricane Ida. The Saints would be the dwelling group at TIAA Financial institution Discipline since they have been initially purported to host the sport, which could have the identical begin time of 4:25 pm ET.
The Saints have been practising in Dallas since evacuating final week and have been hoping to play on the Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium, however the venue has a live performance scheduled later that week and wasn’t out there. The NFL prefers to have any video games performed at an NFL stadium to accommodate replay necessities and different logistical particulars.
New Orleans will likely be on the highway in Weeks 2 and three of the season, and the hope is the Caesars Superdome will likely be able to host the Saints’ Sport 4 recreation.
Packers coach Matt LaFleur stated there will likely be changes to be made taking part in in Jacksonville slightly than New Orleans.
“We’ll regulate and I believe there are some changes: some positives, it in all probability gained’t be fairly as loud,” he stated. “The adverse is it’s arduous to simulate that form of warmth.”
Information of the relocation impacted the percentages for the sport, with the Saints crashing from a three-point favourite all the way down to 4½-point underdogs on the BetUS’ Sportsbook’s Week1 NFL betting lines.
That is sadly not the primary time the Saints have been displaced, because the group needed to evacuate New Orleans for the 2005 season after Hurricane Katrina. The group will proceed to observe in Dallas for as much as a month because it waits for the New Orleans space to be again up and operating.
Smith Seemingly Out For Season
The Minnesota Vikings are getting ready for tight finish Irv Smith Jr. to overlook the complete season after he underwent surgical procedure to restore a meniscus damage on Wednesday. There isn’t a set timeline for Smith’s return, however head coach Mike Zimmer stated the group is getting ready for him to overlook all the 2021 marketing campaign.
“We knew it was in all probability going to be a short time anyway,” Zimmer stated. “These are all a part of issues it’s important to plan for.”
Smith was anticipated to tackle an even bigger function within the Vikings offense this season after Kyle Rudolph departed as a free agent within the offseason. Smith had 30 catches for 365 yards and 5 touchdowns in his second NFL season in 2020.
“He’s only a nice soccer participant, and there’s no cause to suppose he wasn’t going to have an excellent 12 months, however he’s obtained quite a lot of good soccer forward of him,” Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins said. “I might count on, each time he’s again, the identical nice participant that he was final 12 months and that he was this August.”
The Vikings traded for veteran tight finish Chris Herndon from the Jets on Tuesday and claimed former Jacksonville tight finish, Ben Ellefson, on Wednesday.
In the interim, the Vikings nonetheless path the Inexperienced Bay Packers in NFL division odds to win the NFC North. The BetUS Sportsbook costs Minnesota at +225, whereas the Packers carry -175 odds.
Belichick Denies Cam Launch Due To Vaccination Standing
New England Patriots head coach Invoice Belichick is denying that the stunning launch of quarterback Cam Newton had something to do together with his vaccination standing. Newton was let go by the Patriots on Tuesday in a transfer anticipated by only a few.
“No. Look, you guys hold speaking about that,” Belichick said to reporters when asked about the issue on Wednesday. “I might simply level out that I don’t know what the quantity is, however the variety of gamers, coaches, and workers members which were contaminated by COVID on this coaching camp — who’ve been vaccinated — is a reasonably excessive quantity. So I wouldn’t lose sight of that.”
Newton was absent from the Patriots for 5 days final week because of a COVID-19 protocol misunderstanding, in line with the group. He missed three practices over that point, which can have allowed rookie Mac Jones to make his case to change into the starter.
Newton has by no means confirmed his vaccination standing when requested by reporters, saying that it was a private difficulty.
The NFL advised groups in Might that vaccination standing couldn’t be a think about chopping a participant, with the NFLPA vowing to open an investigation towards the Jaguars when head coach City Meyer stated that will have been a think about a few of the group’s remaining cuts on Tuesday.
The choice hasn’t impacted the Patriots’ Super Bowl odds but, as they nonetheless carry a +4000 payout to win all of it in February.