New Orleans Saints 17 @ Atlanta Falcons 14: Who Dat Say !?

Whodat12-7_medium

Woo-Hoo!!  They did it.  It took all four quarters and all of my staying power, but the Saints prevailed in a tough, low-scoring affair that harkened back to the Jim Mora days of BIG D and lots of punts.

Speaking of which, how 'bout that DEFENSE?  In a game in which the offense sputtered for much of the night, the defense continued to answer the call and kept the game close, shutting down Atlanta playmakers right and left, hardly giving up any ground.

We're in the playoffs now, and we'll have to see where we end up after the Week 17 games (#1 seed and at home [it's possible] or traveling to Seattle or St. Louis).

Make the jump to begin poring over all the reports, statistics, quotes, and highlights from the game.

Saints vs Falcons coverage

Saints vs Falcons recap

Saints vs Falcons boxscore

The Falcoholic


Gimme Them Statistics

NFL Game Center: New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons | nfl.com
New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons NFL Game Center - includes AP story, box score, video highlights, drive charts, play-by-play, etc.

New Orleans Saints vs. Atlanta Falcons - Recap | ESPN.com
Final statistics, AP story, play-by-play, drive charts, photos, and more from the New Orleans vs. Atlanta game played on December 27, 2010.

Saints clinch playoff spot with 17-14 win over Falcons | wwltv.com | Eye on Black and Gold
Paul Newberry's AP story.

 

Twitter

jeffduncantp When you look up "slippery" in the dictionary there's a picture of Pierre Thomas in it.
jeffduncantp The Saints clinched a playoff spot & guaranteed at least the No. 5 seed with tonight's 17-14 win over the Falcons.
jeffduncantp Apparently Robert Meachem tripped over a camera man while making his way off the field. He looked OK but had to be carried off the field...
jeffduncantp Interesting scene here postgame. Saints defensive players running back on to the field to take postgame unit photos at Falcons midfield logo
TylerLorenzen Winning is great!
ChaseDaniel Great win tonight in ATL! #Saints
usama_young28 Another big win... Feels even better to get it in ATL. The Who Dat nation was loud and proud again. We expect nothing less. Thanks everyone!
scottshanle "@ddockett: The toughest Offensive line I played against in the last 2yrs is the New Orleans saints!".........me too! They are beasts
LanceMoore16 Feels great to have gotten the win and locked up a spot in the playoffs tonight. Awesome team win. #whodat
sharper42 Like we do about this time, all we do is win, win, win, win....no matter what! Home or away, the dirty birds can't see the WHO DAT nation!
robyslyfe INDIVIDUALS talk...a TEAM lets their play do the talking as one...WHO DAT Nation 2nite that point was proven.
LanceMoore16 O and I definitely can't forgot about the super loud saints fans that were at the game tonight. U all have our backs like none other.
LanceMoore16 And of course I'm not gonna leave out the who dat nation that watched us on tv. We thank and love u all too!!!
jgoody76 One play ruined my night! Thankfully we found a way to get it done!
jgoody76 Now that I got that off my chest! So much for that super bowl hangover Thing! We back in the playoffs. #whodat
usama_young28 Lol i jus was talkin to @alexbrown96 about that. Great time RT @dejuanp: @usama_young28 my cousin told me you served her at the McDonald's
usama_young28 Tell her its too late to b up... Good night! RT @ladyj2: @usama_young28 Nya stayed up for the whole game! Congrats Saints! Who Dat!!!
j_bushrod7475 Way to get outta that place wit a W... Wasn't easy... Mistakes were made starting with myself... Gotta get (cont) http://tl.gd/7ophko
alexbrown96 What a game! That's how u go into a hostile environment and win a football game! Playoff bound and with a little luck a #1 seed! Who Dat!
richeisen Both Falcons-Saints games and Falcons-Bucs were riveting. NFC South is the most entertaining division in 2010.
Official_Saints Saints come back to beat the Falcons 17-14 to clinch a playoff spot & keep their hopes alive for the NFC No. 1 Seed!
HeathEvans Saints Nation that was for guys tonight! Thx for all the mentions tonight as well! Who Dat!#fb
alexbrown96 I love these jokers!!! Thanks for coming to the game... RT @karimarbrown: More ;)http://plixi.com/p/66124254
reggie_bush Who Dat!!!!!!!
dmcallister26  Yo #teaminsomnia who dat nation checkin all the way n with ya
usama_young28 Just touched down in nola...Frosted windows though?! 28 degrees. Cant complain, at least we ain't in Alaska lol http://plixi.com/p/66141409
reggie_bush You know you have the best fans in football when fans are waiting to greet us at the airport in 29 degree weather! Who Dat!
drewbrees Just got back from Monday Nighter. Great win for the Who Dat Nation. It was great seeing so many Saints fans in the Georgia Dome
MalcolmJenkins So glad to be back home after a big win and knowing we got our spot in the playoffs!!! Let's go Who Dat Nation!!!
usama_young28 Aight. Time to knock out. Good night, I mean morning

 

From the Saints Sideline

New Orleans Saints beat the Atlanta Falcons 17-14 at the Georgia Dome | NOLA.com
Jeff Duncan's in-game updates and early post-game summary.

Saints-Falcons Gameday | neworleanssaints.com
Staff report - game recap.

Late drive lifts Saints past Falcons, 17-14 | 2theadvocate.com
Gary Laney's brief game recap.

Saints reach playoffs with statement win at Falcons | neworleans.com
Brian Allee-Walsh

Williams, Saints defense deliver in win over Falcons | neworleans.com
Ed Daniels

Hartley makes kick for Week 3 redemption | 2theadvocate.com
Sheldon Mickles

Saints clinch playoffs | 2theadvocate.com
Sheldon Mickles

Pierre Thomas steps up in big way for New Orleans Saints | NOLA.com
Contributing Writer - Garrett Hartley hits career-long 52-yard field goal.

New Orleans Saints' Robert Meachem injured in collision with photographer | NOLA.com
Staff Report - He had 10 catches for 101 yards.

New Orleans Saints clinch playoff berth with win vs. Falcons | NOLA.com
Mike Triplett - They rally for thrilling 17-14 win at Atlanta.

Rapid Reaction: Saints 17, Falcons 14 - NFC South Blog - ESPN.com
Pat Y. - I’m heading downstairs for interviews and will be back with more in a bit. But first, a quick Rapid Reaction to the Saints' 17-14 victory.

Falcons give up some turf to Saints - NFC South Blog - ESPN.com
Pat Y. - John Abraham, just like everyone in the Atlanta Falcons locker room, got the same speech Monday night. 

Saints Postgame Notes | neworleanssaints.com
Staff report

 

Falcon's Eye View

Falcons can't stop Brees at the end, lose 17-14  | ajc.com
D. Orlando Ledbetter - The Falcons made Drew Brees pay for a huge mistake, but couldn't stop the New Orleans quarterback with everything on the line, losing 17-14 to the Saints in a tightly played Monday Night Football game.

Crown On Hold | atlantafalcons.com
Jay Adams - In a game with so much on the line, it’s sometimes tough for two teams to live up to the billing. Monday night, the Falcons and Saints had no problem with that.

Notes & Milestones: Falcons vs. Saints | atlantafalcons.com
Matt Haley - Atlanta sees eight-game win streak snapped in a loss to division rival New Orleans.

Falcons can't stop Brees at the end, lose 17-14  | ajc.com
D. Orlando Ledbetter - The Falcons made Drew Brees pay for a huge mistake, but couldn't stop the New Orleans quarterback with everything on the line, losing 17-14 to the Saints in a tightly played Monday Night Football game.

Slow start for Saints, Falcons offenses  | ajc.com
Jeff Haws - What many expected to be a shootout started slowly Monday night, and the big scores never materialized.

Todd McClure feels awful about botched snap | ajc.com
D. Orlando Ledbetter - Falcons center Todd McClure had a shotgun snap skid back to Matt Ryan. Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma pounced on the ball at the 34-yard line.

Q&A: Sharper tells how they shut down the Falcons | ajc.com
D. Orlando Ledbetter - New Orleans Saints safety Darren Sharper played a key role in shutting down the Falcons offense on Monday night.

The aftermath: Coach Smith explains decision to punt | ajc.com
D. Orlando Ledbetter - Falcons coach Mike Smith was gracious in his post-game media session. He gave the Saints credit for shutting down the offense and explained his fourth quarter decision to give the ball back to the Saints so they could basically run the clock out.

 

Post-Game Quotes

from Jay Adams - atlantafalcons.com

Safety Darren Sharper
"That was a good performance by our defense. We know who they want to get the ball to and the main thing was that we stopped their running attack and didn't allow Turner to get going. And once we did that it made our jobs a lot easier. It forced them to start throwing the ball."

On the two interceptions by Drew Brees:
"The best thing that he did was make the tackle on the second one (Abraham). If he doesn't make that tackle it was going to be tough on us to come back. He's a fighter and everyone knows that. Drew is the MVP."

LB Scott Shanle
On the making the playoffs:

"It feels great. It's the first step in trying to repeat and defend our championship is to get into the tournament. "

On slowing down Turner and Gonzalez:
"They have talented players. Obviously those guys have been a key part of what they've done this year. I think we would be crazy to not try and make someone else beat us. That's kind of what we did tonight."

OT Jon Stinchcomb
On Brees overcoming the two interceptions

"He doesn't let one bad play affect his game. You see him move forward and put that last play behind him. I'm sure that no one is a harsher critic on him than himself. For him to be able to rebound and lead this team is a testament to his toughness."

On making the playoffs
"We are in. It's all about trying to continue to play good football. "

Head coach Sean Payton
"It was a hard fought game. The reason why it is tough to play in the [Georgia] Dome is because this is a really good football team. The momentum of the game went back and forth, but we were fortunate enough to overcome the turnovers and make enough points to win the game. This is a significant win, and it was great to get this win on the road."

 

Lagniappe

Playoff Seeding | neworleanssaints.com
(from nfl.com) With the Saints win on Monday night over the Falcons, there are four teams with a shot at home field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs.

 

V-Roll Roll Call

Postgame Vlog: Saints alive with win at Falcons | neworleans.com
Brian Allee-Walsh recaps the thrilling win for the Saints against the Falcons from the Georgia Dome.

Saints @ Falcons Video Gallery | neworleanssaints.com
Game highlights package, individual play highlights, and Payton's press conference.

 

 

 

 

 

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