Brees sets ca­reer TD mark in win

Orlando Sentinel - - SPORTS TUESDAY -

NFL

Drew Brees be­came the NFL’s all­time leader in touch­down passes, throw­ing for four scores to lead the Saints to a 34-7 vic­tory over the Colts on Mon­day night in New Or­leans.

The scor­ing strike that broke Pey­ton Man­ning’s record of 539 ca­reer touch­down passes came in the third quar­ter, when Brees hit tight end Josh Hill for a 5-yard score. Brees’ next pass in the game was the 541st scor­ing toss of his ca­reer, a 28-yard TD to re­serve QB and util­ity player Taysom Hill that put the Saints up 34-0.

Brees came into the game hold­ing records for com­ple­tions with 6,792 and yards pass­ing with 72,577 — and built on those num­bers by also set­ting a record for com­ple­tion per­cent­age in a game. He com­pleted 29 of 30 passes — 96.7% — for 307 yards be­fore be­ing re­lieved by Teddy Bridg­wa­ter in the fourth. That broke the mark Philip Rivers had held since com­plet­ing 28 of 29 (96.6%) against the Car­di­nals last sea­son.

The vic­tory kept the Saints (11-3), who’d al­ready won the NFC South, in the run­ning with the 49ers (11-3) and Pack­ers (11-3) for one of the top two seeds in the NFC play­offs. The Colts (6-8) were elim­i­nated from play­off con­tention af­ter los­ing their fourth straight and sixth out of seven.

Ja­coby Bris­sett strug­gled at times and fin­ished 18 of 34 for 165 yards against a Saints de­fense look­ing for redemp­tion af­ter al­low­ing 48 points in a loss to the 49ers a week ear­lier.

Mean­while, Colts de­fend­ers had no answer for Michael Thomas, who caught 12 passes for 128 yards, in­clud­ing a 15-yard touch­down. Thomas’ eighth game this sea­son with at least 10 catches give him 133 for the sea­son, which is also the fourth-high­est sin­gle-sea­son to­tal in NFL his­tory.

With four more catches, Thomas will pass An­to­nio Brown and Julio Jones for sec­ond most in a sea­son and needs 11 to eclipse Hall of Famer Marvin Har­ri­son’s record of 143 from 2002.

An­other ban for Gor­don: The trou­bles that have fol­lowed Josh Gor­don through­out his ca­reer con­tin­ued Mon­day as the Sea­hawks wide re­ceiver was sus­pended in­def­i­nitely by the NFL for vi­o­lat­ing league poli­cies on per­for­mance en­hancers and sub­stances of abuse.

Gor­don was re­in­stated by the NFL in Au­gust af­ter hav­ing been sus­pended in­def­i­nitely in De­cem­ber 2018, miss­ing the fi­nal three games of last sea­son for vi­o­la­tions of the league’s sub­stance abuse pol­icy.

Gor­don signed with the Pa­tri­ots and was among the lead­ing re­ceivers for the de­fend­ing Su­per Bowl champs with 20 catches for 287 yards and a touch­down through six games. But he was placed on in­jured re­serve with knee and an­kle in­juries and was re­leased in late Oc­to­ber.

The Sea­hawks stepped in and claimed the oft-trou­bled re­ceiver off waivers. His first game came in Week 10 against the 49ers when Gor­don made a pair of key catches late in the Sea­hawks’ 27-24 over­time win. Gor­don had seven re­cep­tions over five games with the Sea­hawks.

Gor­don’s brief stint with the Sea­hawks fin­ished with 11 tar­gets, 139 yards re­ceiv­ing and one in­com­plete pass at­tempt on a trick play.

Gor­don was also sus­pended for the first two games of the 2013 sea­son for a sub­stance abuse pol­icy vi­o­la­tion but still caught 87 passes for nine touch­downs and a league-lead­ing 1,646 yards and was voted to the All-Pro team. He has been in and out of the league since.

This is the eighth time Gor­don has been sus­pended by the league or a team.

Ex­tra points: Tex­ans coach Bill O’Brien said he wasn’t rul­ing out the pos­si­bil­ity de­fen­sive end J.J. Watt could re­turn this sea­son from a torn pec­toral mus­cle. Watt, a three-time de­fen­sive player of the year, suf­fered the in­jury in Week 8 . ... The Chiefs claimed vet­eran pass rusher Ter­rell Suggs off waivers, fill­ing a mas­sive hole at de­fen­sive end af­ter los­ing Alex Okafor to a torn pec­toral mus­cle a day ear­lier against the Bron­cos. Suggs, 37, spent the first 16 years of his ca­reer with the Ravens be­fore spend­ing most of last sea­son with the Car­di­nals, who waived him last week . ... The Saints claimed CB Janoris Jenk­ins off waivers af­ter the Giants cut the vet­eran cor­ner Fri­day for us­ing an of­fen­sive term on Twit­ter and re­fus­ing to apol­o­gize.

BRIAN BLANCO/AP

Josh Gor­don has been sus­pended by the NFL or his team eight times in his ca­reer.

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