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Saints Alone Atop NFC South with 31-21 Victory over Panthers

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The Saints made it interesting, but eventually swept the Panthers with a 31-21 win

NFL: Carolina Panthers at New Orleans Saints Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Coming off a disappointing performance last Sunday against the Los Angeles Rams, the New Orleans Saints (9-3) were trying to get back in the winning column when they faced the Carolina Panthers (8-4) in a pivotal NFC South clash this afternoon in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

In the first half, the Saints offense that we have come to expect showed up, with New Orleans scoring 21 points and running backs Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara rushing the ball with the efficiency they have displayed all season long. The scoring output could have been better for New Orleans, as tight end Josh Hill fumbled in Saints territory, thwarting a promising drive. The Panthers for their part played a good first half on offense, scoring 14 points, seven of which came off the Saints turnover. At halftime, the Saints held a precarious seven-point lead at 21-14.

In the second half, the Saints controlled the action, limiting the Panthers to only one touchdown, while scoring 10 points despite a few hairy moments. The Saints return to their winning ways and in impressive fashion, especially defensively, where the Panthers could not muster much of a running game.

Alvin Kamara further cemented his pole-position as the Rookie of the Year for the 2017 NFL season. The Saints now 9-3, need to recover quickly as they have a date with the Atlanta Falcons on Thursday night on the road. But for now, it’s the 24-hour rule, enjoy this win!

Who Dat!!!

Here is a quarter by quarter recap of the action:

1st HALF

1st Quarter

  • Panthers win the toss and defer to the second half
  • Saints start at their 30-yard line after a touchback and penalty on Carolina
  • Drew Brees finds Michael Thomas for 22 yards and into Panthers territory
  • Saints get into the red zone on an 18-yard pass to Alvin Kamara
  • Saints stall at the two-yard line and go for it on 4th and goal
  • Alvin Kamara finds the end zone on a toss play to the right
  • NO: 7 - CAR: 0
  • Panthers start at their 25-yard line
  • Panthers get into Saints territory in two plays
  • Carolina gets 1st and goal on a Saints penalty
  • Jonathan Stewart rushes into the end zone for a touchdown
  • NO: 7 - CAR: 7
  • Saints take over at their 25-yard line
  • Brees misses an open Mike Thomas on 3rd and 4, Saints punt
  • Panthers take over at their 28-yard line
  • Carolina goes three-and-out and has to punt
  • Saints take over at their 23-yard line
  • Saints go three-and-out as well and punt
  • Panthers start from their 34-yard line and gain two yards as the quarter ends

2nd Quarter

  • Panthers go three-and-out too...IT’S A PUNT FEST!!!
  • Saints have the ball at their 16-yard line
  • Mark Ingram runs for 72 yards deep into the Panthers red zone
  • Ingram takes it in the end zone himself on 2nd down for a touchdown
  • NO: 14 - CAR: 7
  • Panthers start at their 25-yard line
  • Panthers go three-and-out on a pass breakup by Ken Crawley
  • Panthers botch the punt, giving the ball to the Saints at Carolina’s 31-yard line
  • Saints stall but Julius Peppers commits a personal foul penalty on Tommylee Lewis
  • Brees throws a touchdown to Michael Thomas
  • NO: 21 - CAR: 7
  • Panthers start at their 23-yard line and go three-and-out
  • Saints take over at their 17-yard line
  • Saints get near midfield but Josh Hill fumbles, Carolina recovers
  • Cam Newton finds Christian McCaffrey for a touchdown
  • NO: 21 - CAR: 14
  • Saints take over at their 25-yard line
  • Saints get into Panthers territory on three passes
  • Brees gets sacked at midfield
  • Saints stall and punt
  • Panthers take over at their 19-yard line and bleed the clock to end the half

2nd HALF

3rd Quarter

  • Panthers receive and return the kickoff to their 19-yard line
  • A.J. Klein sacks Cam Newton on 3rd-and-3 and Carolina punts
  • Saints have the ball at their 33-yard line
  • Brees finds Willie Snead for a 26-yard pass to keep the drive alive on third down
  • Alvin Kamara runs into the end zone for his 2nd touchdown of the day
  • NO: 28 - CAR: 14
  • Panthers get the ball at their 25-yard line
  • Carolina keeps the drive going on 3rd down after a Saints penalty
  • Panthers stall on 3rd and 7 and have to punt
  • Saints get the ball at their 35-yard line
  • Saints get deep into Carolina territory on a deep pass to Ted Ginn Jr.
  • Saints stall and Wil Lutz misses a 38-yard field goal
  • Panthers take over at their 28-yard line
  • Carolina faces a third and short as the quarter ends

4th Quarter

  • Panthers convert and get to their 40-yard line
  • Carolina gets into Saints territory
  • Panthers get into the red zone on a PI penalty on P.J. Williams
  • Panthers go for it on 4th-and-6 at the Saints 12-yard line and fail to convert
  • Saints go three-and-out on terrible play-calling trying to pass the ball
  • Saints get bailed out by a forced fumble by Chris Banjo on the punt return
  • Saints get the ball deep into Panthers territory on a pass to Michael Thomas
  • Saints stall near the Panthers 14-yard line
  • Wil Lutz makes a 31-yard field goal
  • NO: 31 - CAR: 14
  • Panthers take over at their 25-yard line
  • Cam Newton runs for 31 yards into the Saints 24-yard line
  • Cam Newton finds Devin Funchess for a touchdown
  • NO: 31 - CAR: 21
  • Panthers go for an onside kick but Carolina is out of bounds
  • Saints take over at the 50-yard line
  • Saints convert on a 3rd and 10 deep into Panthers territory at the 2-minute warning
  • New Orleans kneels on the ball to ice this one
  • Saints Win! Saints Win!
  • Final Score: NO: 31 - CAR: 21

Poll

What Struck You Most from the Saints Win Over the Panthers?

This poll is closed

  • 44%
    Alvin Kamara is The Man!
    (185 votes)
  • 33%
    Impressive defensive effort without Marshon Lattimore
    (140 votes)
  • 5%
    Sean Payton will live, but mostly die with the pass! Run the ball coach!
    (24 votes)
  • 13%
    Who the hell is Taysom Hill? He is awesome!
    (56 votes)
  • 1%
    My cheeseburger struck my stomach with delight
    (7 votes)
412 votes total Vote Now