Falcons 16 @ Saints 45: Saints Flummox Falcons; Win NFC South

This is the textbook definition of a historic night. Drew Brees hits Darren Sproles for a nine-yard TD to break Dan Marino's season passing record with 5,087 yards on the season (and counting), and the Saints absolutely pummel the Atlanta Falcons en route to clinching their third NFC South title in the last six seasons.

It was close for a while (the Falcons actually led 10-7 early in the second quarter), and Brees' two interceptions (with a few other passes almost picked off) certainly made it interesting, as did the unusually high number of incompletions. But as the game wore on, the Saints played great complementary offense and defense to eventually overwhelm the Falcons and come away with the 29-point win.

Sproles (5 carries for 67 yards) and Pierre Thomas (9 for 53 and a TD) led the ground assault, while Marques Colston (7 for 81 and a TD), Robert Meachem (3 for 75, TD), and Jimmy Graham (4 for 42, TD) were the main aerial weapons. Lance Moore left the game early after possibly re-injuring his hamstring, so we'll have to see how that plays out.

On defense, they gave up lots of yards through the air, but made many a timely stop to force a punt or FG. Jabari Greer led the way with 8 tackles, while Scott Shanle tallied 4 along with a well-timed forced fumble that Malcolm Jenkins scooped and scored a TD with on a 30-yard dash in the second half.

Make the jump for stats and more discussion of the big win!

Saints Individual Stats

Passing CP/AT YDS TD INT
D. Brees 23/39 307 4 2
Rushing ATT YDS TD LG
D. Sproles 5 67 0 36
P. Thomas 9 53 1 12
C. Ivory 8 35 0 11
D. Brees 1 9 0 9
Receiving REC YDS TD LG
M. Colston 7 81 1 23
R. Meachem 3 75 1 41
L. Moore 2 53 0 38
J. Graham 4 42 1 17
D. Henderson 3 30 0 12
D. Sproles 2 22 1 13
P. Thomas 2 4 0 3
Fumbles FUM LOST REC YDS
M. Jenkins 0 0 1 30
S. Shanle 0 0 0 0
Kicking FG LG XP PTS
J. Kasay 1/1 29 6/6 9
Punting NO AVG I20 LG
T. Morstead 2 52.0 0 59
Kickoff Returns NO AVG TD LG
D. Sproles 4 36 0 92
Punt Returns NO AVG TD LG
D. Sproles 0 0 0 0

Falcons Individual Stats

Passing CP/AT YDS TD INT
M. Ryan 34/52 373 1 0
C. Redman 6/9 61 0 0
Rushing ATT YDS TD LG
M. Turner 11 39 0 7
J. Rodgers 1 -1 0 -1
M. Ryan 2 -3 0 2
Receiving REC YDS TD LG
J. Jones 8 128 1 40
R. White 11 127 0 26
T. Gonzalez 5 41 0 9
M. Turner 4 36 0 12
E. Weems 3 33 0 18
J. Snelling 4 28 0 16
M. Palmer 2 19 0 10
J. Rodgers 2 19 0 11
H. Douglas 1 3 0 3
Fumbles FUM LOST REC YDS
J. Jones 1 1 0 0
Kicking FG LG XP PTS
M. Bryant 3/3 51 1/1 10
Punting NO AVG I20 LG
M. Bosher 3 43.3 1 56
Kickoff Returns NO AVG TD LG
E. Weems 1 27 0 27
Punt Returns NO AVG TD LG
E. Weems 0 0 0 0

Team Stats

Falcons - - Saints

Total First Downs 23
Total First Downs 26
By Rushing 1
By Rushing 7
By Passing 21
By Passing 17
By Penalty

By Penalty
Third Down Efficiency 8/17 - 47%
Third Down Efficiency 10/13 - 76%
Fourth Down Efficiency 0/3 - 0%
Fourth Down Efficiency 0/0 - 0%
Total Net Yards 469
Total Net Yards 463
Total Rushing/Passing Plays (includes Sacks) 75
Total Rushing/Passing Plays (includes Sacks) 63
Average Gain per Offensive Play 6.3
Average Gain per Offensive Play 7.3
Net Yards Rushing 35
Net Yards Rushing 164
Total Rushing Plays 14
Total Rushing Plays 23
Average Gain per Rushing Play 2.5
Average Gain per Rushing Play 7.1
Tackled for a Loss (Number-Yards) 2--2
Tackled for a Loss (Number-Yards) 3--5
Net Yards Passing 434
Net Yards Passing 299
Times Sacked (Number-Yards) 0 - 0
Times Sacked (Number-Yards) 1 - 8
Gross Yards Passing 434
Gross Yards Passing 307
Pass Comp-Att-Int 40 - 61 - 0
Pass Comp-Att-Int 23 - 39 - 2
Average Gain per Passing Play (includes Sacks) 7.1
Average Gain per Passing Play (includes Sacks) 7.5
Kickoffs (Number-In End Zone-Touchbacks) 5 - 3 - 1
Kickoffs (Number-In End Zone-Touchbacks) 8 - 7 - 7
Punts (Number-Average) 3 - 50.0
Punts (Number-Average) 2 - 52.0
Blocked 0
Blocked 0
Net Punting Average 43.3
Net Punting Average 52.0
FGs Blocked - PATs Blocked 0 - 0
FGs Blocked - PATs Blocked 0 - 0
Total Return Yardage (excludes Kickoffs) 14
Total Return Yardage (excludes Kickoffs) 0
Punt Returns (Number-Yards) 0 - 0
Punt Returns (Number-Yards) 0 - 0
Kickoff Returns (Number-Yards) 1 - 27
Kickoff Returns (Number-Yards) 4 - 147
Interception Returns (Number-Yards) 2 - 14
Interception Returns (Number-Yards) 0 - 0
Penalties (Number-Yards) 7 - 57
Penalties (Number-Yards) 4 - 46
Fumbles (Number-Lost) 1 - 1
Fumbles (Number-Lost) 0 - 0
Touchdowns 1
Touchdowns 6
Rushing 0
Rushing 1
Passing 1
Passing 4
Interceptions 0
Interceptions 0
Kickoff Returns 0
Kickoff Returns 0
Fumble Returns 0
Fumble Returns 1
Punt Returns 0
Punt Returns 0
Extra Points (Made-Attempted) 1 - 1
Extra Points (Made-Attempted) 6 - 6
Kicking (Made-Attempted) 1 - 1
Kicking (Made-Attempted) 6 - 6
Two Point Conversions (Made-Attempted) 0 - 0
Two Point Conversions (Made-Attempted) 0 - 0
Field Goals (Made-Attempted) 3 - 3
Field Goals (Made-Attempted) 1 - 1
Red Zone Efficiency 0/3 - 0%
Red Zone Efficiency 4/6 - 66%
Goal To Go Efficiency 0/1 - 0%
Goal To Go Efficiency 2/2 - 100%
Safeties 0
Safeties 0
Final Score 16
Final Score 45
Time of Possession 33:19
Time of Possession 26:41
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