Saints stun Falcons in OT thriller, 43-37
ATLANTA, GA - The Dirty Birds and Saints lit up the scoreboard in Atlanta, but it was Drew Brees who engineered his 42nd career game winning drive in the 4th quarter/overtime that lifted New Orleans to a stunning 43-37 overtime victory. On the only possession of overtime, Brees leaped over the line of scrimmage on 2nd-and-goal breaking the plain from one-yard out to ensure a huge OT victory on the road.
The Saints offense came out firing on all cylinders after an ugly performance in Week 2 against the Browns. New Orleans took a 7-0 lead with a six-play, 75-yard TD drive that lasted just 3 minutes, 15 seconds. It started with three straight first downs and ended with a 4-yard TD pass from Drew Brees to Ted Ginn Jr. on third down.
Drew Brees made history in the second quarter breaking Brett Favre's NFL record for career completions with No. 6,301. Brees broke the record with a 17-yard completion to receiver Michael Thomas in the second quarter.
Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan torched the Saints secondary all day and picked on CB P.J. Williams (who replaced struggling CB Ken Crawley as a starter this week). Ryan connected on a 75-yard touchdown strike to rookie WR Calvin Ridley for to take a 14-13 lead. Ridley leads all receivers with seven catches, 146 yards and three touchdowns.
Defensively things would get worse for the Saints, Nickel cornerback Patrick Robinson -- one of their top free-agent additions -- was carted off the field with an injury.
On the next play, Matt Ryan and rookie wide out Calvin Ridley connected on their third touchdown pass of the game.
In a back and fourth affair, The Saints special teams came up huge in the third quarter. Defensive end Alex Okafor blocked a punt to set up an 11-yard touchdown pass from Drew Brees to Cameron Meredith. The free agent acquisition from Chicago was making his first start with New Orleans.
Trailing 29-23, New Orleans got a massive boost from quarterback Taysom Hill, a 35-yard run as the option quarterback on third-and-short. That set up Drew Brees to fullback Zach Line on fourth down for a one-yard touchdown. The Saints would take a 30-29 with 9:59 remaining in a game.
Atlanta regained the lead 37-30 with 6:53 remaining on Ryan's fifth touchdown pass of the game to Mohamed Sanu (a personal best for Ryan).
The wildness would continue, Brees tied the game at 37 courtesy of a 7-yard touchdown run where Brees spun off two tacklers diving into the end-zone.
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