■ Who: Philadelphia Eagles at New Orleans Saints
■ When: 1:40 p.m. Sunday
■ Where: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans
■ TV: KVVU-5
■ Line: Saints -8; total 51½
referring to Sunday’s rematch in the divisional round of the NFC playoffs. “Are you going to play harder” because of a perceived slight?
Still, Payton expects a more competitive affair than the Saints’ 48-7 blowout of the Eagles on Nov. 18, which gave Philadelphia the dubious distinction of becoming the first reigning Super Bowl champion to lose by that wide a margin in the following regular season.
The Eagles (10-7) appeared to be sinking fast when their loss in New Orleans dropped them to 4-6. But they’ve rallied to win six of seven since, including a road victory against the Los Angeles Rams that helped New Orleans (13-3) capture the conference’s top seed.
“They’ve kind of been in a playoff role really going back to those games, needing to win to get in,” Payton noted. “So it’s impressive.”
Now the Eagles, who opened as 10-point underdogs this week, can ruin the Saints’ Super Bowl dreams with a second straight road upset.