Saints @ 49ers: First Half Recap and Open Thread

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JANUARY 14: Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints looks to pass from the pocket against the San Francisco 49ers in the first quarter of the NFC Divisional playoff game at Candlestick Park on January 14, 2012 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)

Four turnovers. That's all you really need to know about the first half of this game.

Fumbles by Pierre Thomas and Courtney Roby along with two Drew Brees interceptions allowed the San Francisco 49ers to get out to a scary 17-0 lead.

But the momentum changed in the second quarter as the Saints defense started tightening up and the offense got comfortable. Brees threw two touchdown strikes to Jimmy Graham and Marques Colston and narrow the gap to a manageable 17-14 score before the half.

It could be worse. The Saints are only down by 3 points despite a turnover differential of -3. If they can win the second half, they can win the game.

Pierre Thomas took a helmet-to-helmet hit early and suffered a game-ending concussion.

Click the picture to see more from today's game. Make the jump for full first half stats. This is the open thread for the second half.

Team Stats

NO SF
First Downs 13 8
Total Yards 203 156
Passing Yards 182 108
Rushing Yards 21 48
Penalties (Yds) 0(0) 2(28)
Turnovers 4 1
Punts (AVG) 2(41) 4(37)
Time of Pos. 17:47 12:09


Top Performers

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS
Passing CP/AT YDS TD INT
D. Brees 23/33 193 2 2
Rushing CAR YDS TD LG
C. Ivory 4 8 0 4
P. Thomas 1 6 0 6
Receiving REC YDS TD LG
D. Sproles 8 38 0 12
M. Colston 5 73 1 25T
J. Graham 3 25 1 14T

SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS
Passing CP/AT YDS TD INT
A. Smith 12/21 130 2 0
Rushing CAR YDS TD LG
F. Gore 6 32 0 15
K. Hunter 2 16 0 11
Receiving REC YDS TD LG
V. Davis 4 82 1 49T
M. Crabtree 2 13 1 9
F. Gore 2 8 0 9
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