Brees shakes off INTs, leads Saints to 17-14 win

The Pak Banker - - I Nternational -

AT­LANTA: Drew Brees and the New Or­leans Saints showed the high-fly­ing At­lanta Fal­cons they're not ready to give up their crown just yet.

That's right, Who Dat go­ing back to the play­offs: The reign­ing Su­per Bowl champs.

Fac­ing a team that had won eight in a row and was poised to lock up the di­vi­sion ti­tle and home-field ad­van­tage in the NFC play­offs, New Or­leans ral­lied for a 17-14 vic­tory over the Fal­cons Mon­day night to clinched a re­turn to the post­sea­son.

At­lanta (12-3) couldn't take ad­van­tage of the na­tional stage to si­lence all those skep­tics who won­dered if the team with the NFC's best record is re­ally its best team.

De­spite throw­ing a pair of costly fourth-quar­ter in­ter­cep­tions, Brees through when it counted.

The reign­ing Su­per Bowl MVP led a 90-yard drive that ended with a 6-yard touch­down pass to rookie Jimmy Gra­ham with 3:24 re­main­ing. The Saints (11-4) sent a clear mes­sage to a team they might see again in Jan­uary.

"It feels good," Brees said. "You just want to punch your ticket to the big show, and we've done that. Ob­vi­ously Carolina needs to beat At­lanta next week so we can get that one seed."

The Saints proved that At­lanta is not in­vin­ci­ble, even play­ing at the Ge­or­gia Dome, where the Fal­cons had a 19-3 record in Mike Smith's three years as coach.

"We don't want to feel this way the rest of the sea­son," said Matt Ryan, who lost at home for only the sec­ond time as the Fal­cons' start­ing quar­ter­back. "We're go­ing to work hard to make sure we don't." The loss doesn't ruin At­lanta's two main goals. The Fal­cons can still wrap up their first di­vi­sion crown since 2004 and home field through the NFC play­offs by knock­ing off twowin Carolina at home in the fi­nal week of sea­son. -Reuters

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Pakistan

© PressReader. All rights reserved.