Falcons Roll Over Saints In Impressive Win Print
Written by mark   
Sunday, 09 November 2008 19:32
NFL Headline News

Impressive Rookie

When John Abraham wasn't bearing down on him, Drew Brees had to contend with all those pesky Atlanta defensive backs, constantly getting in the way of his throws.

Bet NFL Week 10 

It was a miserable afternoon for the NFL's most prolific passer.

While Atlanta Falcons rookie Matt Ryan turned in another solid performance, Brees threw a season-high three interceptions, the last of them returned 95 yards for a touchdown by Chevis Jackson, and the Falcons beat up on the New Orleans Saints 34-20 Sunday.

Ryan had two more touchdown passes for the Falcons (6-3), who won for the fourth time in five games to remain in the thick of the playoff race, having defied those who expected a rebuilding year or two after the Michael Vick debacle.

``We have to stop using the word 'surprise,''' safety Lawyer Milloy said. ``We always felt like we had a chance.''

Ryan connected with Roddy White for a 16-yard touchdown on the Falcons' second possession, then broke it open with a short pass to Jerious Norwood that the speedy running back took for a 67-yard touchdown in the opening minute of the fourth quarter for a 27-6 lead.

Jackson finished off New Orleans with the second-longest interception return for a touchdown in Falcons' history. He broke perfectly on a pass for Devery Henderson at the 5 and took off down the sideline with no one else around, high-stepping right in front of the New Orleans bench.

``I had clear sailing,'' Jackson said. ``The whole defense had a good day.''

Brees, who came into the week leading the NFL in passes, completions and yards, didn't get the Saints to the end zone until the fourth quarter with the Falcons comfortably ahead. Of course, he spent much of the game trying to get away from the Atlanta rush.

Abraham had another sack, his 11th of the season, and forced Brees to throw quicker than he wanted at least four other times. Keith Brooking also had a sack.

At one point, Brees rolled to his right looking to throw, but was forced to flee in the opposite direction. He wound up 25 yards behind the line of scrimmage before winding up near the Saints' sideline, where he just flung it out of bounds while falling backward.

``This was extremely frustrating,'' Brees said. ``We're better than this.''

The Saints (4-5) again failed to string together their first winning streak of the season, a severe blow to their postseason hopes in the highly competitive NFC South.

With Reggie Bush still recovering from a knee injury and the Saints barely bothering with a running game, Brees also was picked off by Chris Houston and Erik Coleman. Jackson and Domonique Foxworth each broke up three passes for the Falcons.

Brees did throw his second TD pass on the final play, a 32-yarder to Lance Moore. Not that it mattered. Playing from behind most of the way, he threw a staggering 58 passes - 10 more than he'd attempted in any game this season and just two off his career high. He completed 31 for 422 yards, but most of those gaudy numbers were put up after the Falcons had put it away.

As for the interceptions, Brees said, ``I look at all three and just shake my head.''

Ryan had the better performance with a lot less wear and tear on his arm. He completed 16 of 23 passes for 248 yards and made no big mistakes. The rookie spread it around, hooking up with Michael Jenkins on six passes for 72 yards, while White had five receptions for 68 yards. Michael Turner took care of the running game, carrying 27 times for 96 yards.

But Norwood, Turner's backup, had the biggest play of all after Atlanta used up a good chunk of the third quarter on a drive that led to Jason Elam's second field goal.

Ryan faked a handoff, then swung a pass to Norwood in the flat. The blockers provided a big hole and he did the rest, bursting down the sideline for the longest pass play of his career.

``We feel like any time we get the ball in his hands, he has a chance to go for a touchdown,'' Ryan said.

As if things weren't bad enough for the Saints, cornerback Mike McKenzie was taken off the field on a cart after fracturing his right kneecap. The 32-year-old is likely out for the year and his career could be in jeopardy after his second major injury in as many seasons.

Notes: The Falcons improved to 4-0 on their home field, the team's best start at the Georgia Dome since the 1998 Super Bowl season. ... Abraham banged his left shoulder while rushing Brees late in the first half and to come out. The Falcons star managed to finish the game, but wiggled his the arm uncomfortably at times. ``I feel great,'' he said. ``Just a little beat up.'' ... Henderson ran for 30 yards on his lone carry, which made him the Saints' leading rusher. New Orleans attempted only 17 running plays. ... White's TD catch was his sixth of the season, a career high. ... Atlanta snapped a streak of four straight losses against its division rival. New Orleans swept both meetings in 2006 and '07.

Bet NFL Week 10

Did you like this article? Subscribe to our NFL news feed for the fastest updates delivered right to you - Click here to Subscribe

 

NFL Team Pages

Top NFL Public Bets

#1 463 New Orleans Saints 78%
#2 265 Dallas Cowboys 76%
#3 485 San Francisco 49ers 75%
#4 280 San Francisco 49ers 75%
#5 255 Carolina Panthers 74%
#6 481 New England Patriots 72%
#7 488 Denver Broncos 72%
#8 262 Seattle Seahawks 71%
#9 277 Houston Texans 71%
#10 480 Kansas City Chiefs 69%
View All: NFL |  NBA |  NCAAF |  NCAAB |  MLB |  NHL

Recent NFL Discussions

NFL Futures

NFL TEAM CONFERENCE ODDS CURRENT
DENVER BRONCOS 9/4
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS 3/1
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 17/4
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS 9/2
GREEN BAY PACKERS 6/1
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS 7/1
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS 7/1
CHICAGO BEARS 15/2
PITTSBURGH STEELERS 12/1
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES 14/1
View All

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Contact Us | Advertising | 888-99-SPREAD

THIS IS NOT A GAMBLING SITE – If you think you have a gambling problem click here.

Disclaimer: This site is for informational and entertainment purposes only. Individual users are responsible for the laws regarding accessing gambling information from their jurisdictions. Many countries around the world prohibit gambling, please check the laws in your location. Any use of this information that may violate any federal, state, local or international law is strictly prohibited.

Copyright: The information contained on TheSpread.com website is protected by international copyright and may not be reproduced, or redistributed in any way without expressed written consent.

About: TheSpread.com is the largest sports betting news site in the United States. We provide point spread news, odds, statistics and information to over 199 countries around the world each year. Our coverage includes all North American College and Professional Sports as well as entertainment, political and proposition wagering news.

©1999-2013 TheSpread.com