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Saints make a statement in the Georgia Dome

Reggie Bush, Joe Zelenka, Ovie Mughelli, Jason Snelling

The defending champion New Orleans Saints would like to remind everyone that they haven’t gone anywhere.

After a stirring 17-14 victory in the Georgia Dome Monday night, the Saints are in the playoffs.  They are tied for the third best record in the NFL at 11-4, and they are healthier than they have been all season.   They might just wind up back in Atlanta in three weeks.

The Saints can be no lower than the No. 5 seed in the NFC playoffs.  They could still get a playoff bye if the Zombie John Fox Panthers win in Atlanta next week, but that’s about as likely as Jimmy Clausen winning Offensive Rookie of the Year.

This game wasn’t about winning the division.  It was a chance for the Saints to build on their progress during the season.  It was a dress rehearsal for the playoffs, where they will likely have to win on the road to make it back to the Super Bowl.

Drew Brees, who was under duress all night, tried to do much and was picked off twice in the fourth quarter.  One terrible decision was returned for a touchdown by Falcons lineman Chauncey Davis.

But when the game was on the line, it was Brees and not Matt Ryan who closed.  The Saints embarked on an epic 13-play, 92-yard fourth quarter drive that was capped by a six-yard score to tight end Jimmy Graham.

The Falcons responded by going three-and-out, timidly punting on fourth-and-six, never to go on offense again.  Atlanta was held to only 215 yards by a creative Saints defense.   The Falcons played their sixth straight one score game at home, and it finally bit them.

Jeff Duncan of the New Orleans Times-Picayune pointed out that Graham’s score came on the same play as the go-ahead score to Jeremy Shockey in the Super Bowl.  These 2010 Saints are different, but still dangerous.

They helped remind everyone that the NFC tournament is wide open this year.

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61 Responses to “Saints make a statement in the Georgia Dome”
  1. geauxformore says: Dec 28, 2010 12:32 AM

    Huge statement…..We can go on the road, in a tough place to play and win. Im proud of my team and they showed alot of heart. Keep up the good play on D and we will be tough to beat in the playoffs. What am I talking about, we are already a tough team to beat. WHO DAT……….

  2. turbodog1027 says: Dec 28, 2010 12:34 AM

    Matty ‘crushed ice’ unbeatable in the Ga. dome?
    Guess not. Roddy, just shut your dumb piehole and WHO DAT BABY

  3. importantpftcomment says: Dec 28, 2010 12:35 AM

    The game wasn’t actually as much the Saints winning the game as it was the absolute STUPIDITY of Atlanta punting the ball on 4th and 6 with 2+ minutes remaining in the game.

    Seriously, how stupid was that! Talk about giving up……

  4. mad55555 says: Dec 28, 2010 12:37 AM

    If that’s the best Atlanta and N.O. teams then The Eagles, WILL CRUSH EITHER OF THOSE TEAMS!!! I thought the Eagles would whoop the failcans regardless but after watching tonights game….
    Two words: CHILD PLEASE

  5. 49erman says: Dec 28, 2010 12:41 AM

    Philly already played at Atlanta and was manhandled anddon’t forget they also lost at the Bears as well.

  6. famucancer says: Dec 28, 2010 12:53 AM

    49erman what are you talking about? When was Philly manhandled by Atlanta?? You mean back in 2005? LOL

  7. mborz says: Dec 28, 2010 12:54 AM

    “Good game” from someone who didn’t care who won.

    I agree with importantpftcomment about punting. It’s hard to expect your D to force a 3-and-out, especially when NO had so much riding.

    But overall, good, intense game from both teams.

  8. dirksimmons says: Dec 28, 2010 12:58 AM

    I was impressed with both defenses. Definitely thought Atlanta should have gone for it on fourth and six. I’m not looking forward to the Bears playing either of these teams if it comes to that.

  9. datruth2100 says: Dec 28, 2010 12:59 AM

    “Philly already played at Atlanta and was manhandled.”
    ——————————————————
    When did this happen? last i remember the eagles beat atlanta by 14 and that’s with the kicker missing 3 fg

  10. bleedgreen4life says: Dec 28, 2010 1:00 AM

    yea the eagles beat the falcons..WITHOUT VICK.
    im not so sure we can beat the saints especially if they streak into the playoffs..after all they are the defending champs.

  11. jackers252 says: Dec 28, 2010 1:03 AM

    mad55555, don’t forget, the Saints are more than familiar with playing against Vick. Don’t hang your hat on him….

  12. akasaintsbaby says: Dec 28, 2010 1:05 AM

    Held the falcons to 7 points on offense. The Saints defense shut everybody down.

  13. stevemcguigan says: Dec 28, 2010 1:05 AM

    49erman:

    Philly beat the Falcons with Kolb, numbnuts.

  14. akasaintsbaby says: Dec 28, 2010 1:07 AM

    Brees needs to learn how take a sack. That looked like something Favre does.

  15. redpredator1 says: Dec 28, 2010 1:17 AM

    Hey 49erman, the Eagles beat Atlanta 31-17 in week 6… and that was with Kevin Kolb at QB…

  16. leftysmoke says: Dec 28, 2010 1:22 AM

    Under durress? GJ Rosenthal, you watched the post game interview conducted by a chick LOL. Both of these teams looked like garbage. The AFC is clearly the stronger conference.

  17. bearsgoroar says: Dec 28, 2010 1:23 AM

    If Rodgers doesn’t cough it up at the goal line the Packers would have won there too.

    Atlanta wants respect but this franchise has been a fraud forever and scares NOBODY!

    Michael Turner is overrated and the Dirty Birds about going to get served…for dinner….in the playoffs.

  18. nfl4ever says: Dec 28, 2010 1:30 AM

    49erman says: Dec 28, 2010 12:41 AM

    Philly already played at Atlanta and was manhandled anddon’t forget they also lost at the Bears as well.
    ——————————————————–
    The game was is Philadelphia.

    The Falcons are always conservative on 4th downs, I was disappointed that Matt Ryan did not do more on that drive, after his run on 1st down the falcons offense went out with a whimper.

  19. ilovefoolsball says: Dec 28, 2010 1:32 AM

    #
    importantpftcomment says: Dec 28, 2010 12:35 AM

    The game wasn’t actually as much the Saints winning the game as it was the absolute STUPIDITY of Atlanta punting the ball on 4th and 6 with 2+ minutes remaining in the game.

    Seriously, how stupid was that! Talk about giving up……
    ____________
    If you’re gonna base the entire outcome of the game on whether or not the Falcons go for 4th and 6th in the 4th Quarter you obviously are searching for answers. They held the Saints to 3 and outs all game long, the bigger question is why did they stop blitzing when the game was on the line? Or as Ricky Jackson once said, “if you scared, don’t play, just say you scared.”
    The bottom line is that when the game was on the line the gamers won the game, namely Pierre Thomas and Drew Brees.
    Matty Ice might be cool and collected but he’s not the calculated ice cold assassin that Drew Brees is yet. I don’t know if Matty Ice could’ve come back from throwing two devastating INT’s and lead his team to a game winning drive.

  20. paulienuts says: Dec 28, 2010 1:43 AM

    Keep dreaming, mad dude. N.O. is the best team in the NFC…number two? ATL. Bring on the Eagles, the Saints will take care of them in short order.

  21. blackcatnfl says: Dec 28, 2010 1:52 AM

    Statement? Like, “We will find a stupid way to blow the ballgame if you just give us the chance” statement? They threw the game away, literally, and then nearly choked on their own 20 yard line.

  22. andyprough says: Dec 28, 2010 2:08 AM

    @Rosenthal – “The Saints embarked on an epic 13-play, 92-yard fourth quarter drive that was capped by a six-yard score to tight end Jimmy Graham.”

    ++++++++++++++++

    “Epic” – that’s so 1980’s Rosenthal.

    What? You couldn’t call the drive “wicked”? “Totally awesome” wasn’t a good enough descriptive – or “tubular”? You couldn’t say that the drive “destroyed”??

  23. tiffpats4eva says: Dec 28, 2010 2:12 AM

    49erman,

    Philly did not play at Atlanta this season. Atlanta played in Philly and lost.

  24. eaglesfan87 says: Dec 28, 2010 2:32 AM

    49erman, Philly already played at Atlanta and got manhandled by them, eh? When? Because the Eagles beat the Falcons in Philadelphia 31-17 in a game without Vick and without Jackson for most of the game (the Dunta Robinson hit). And they lost by only 5 in Chicago in a game where their offensive prowess in the Red Zone was terrible.

    So yeah, let’s not count them out yet…

  25. ilovefoolsball says: Dec 28, 2010 2:35 AM

    oh I forgot one thing: RISE UP!

  26. warriorking1112 says: Dec 28, 2010 3:02 AM

    philly sucks they aint going nowhere! ONE N DONE LIKE ALWAYS! Lmao philly lmao lololol philly good woooooonnnn lmao

  27. daniel1963 says: Dec 28, 2010 3:11 AM

    At least the NO morons will have an excuse to party tonight and get drunk. Oh wait, they didn’t need an excuse.

  28. shivablast says: Dec 28, 2010 3:36 AM

    Atlanta is a great team, and as a fan who saw Matt Ryan play at BC several times, I wish him all the best. I just don’t think they’re a Super Bowl caliber team.

  29. bruce460460 says: Dec 28, 2010 4:05 AM

    49erman says:
    Dec 28, 2010 12:41 AM
    “Philly already played at Atlanta and was manhandled”

    Philly won that game 31-17. Idiot.

  30. iluvwikileaks says: Dec 28, 2010 5:01 AM

    Statement? The Saints are lucky to escape with a win. Almost choked the game with bad turnovers.

  31. nicalooch says: Dec 28, 2010 5:07 AM

    WHO IS THAT. Wait, I did it wrong. Now I’ll never be cool in New Orleans. Guess I’ll have to stick with being a tolerable fan to every other city.

  32. jimmysee says: Dec 28, 2010 5:08 AM

    Packers also beat Philly early in the season.

  33. soia311 says: Dec 28, 2010 5:08 AM

    Actually 49erman, you’re a nitwit.

    Atlanta played AT Philadelphia this year. Week 6. The Eagles beat the Falcons 31-17.

    Kevin Kolb went 23-29 326 yards, 3 TDs, 1 INT. Desean Jackson left the game in the 2nd quarter with a concussion, but not after totaling 2 catches for 44 yards, 1 rush for 34 yards and 2 total touchdowns.

    While it is true the Eagles lost to the Bears, they actually did the manhandling against Atlanta. The Falcons may be 12-3 right now, but the Eagles waxed them with their back-up quarterback. Think before you speak, buddy.

  34. screamingsheep69 says: Dec 28, 2010 5:45 AM

    Greggggg sure doesn’t like Jimmy Pickle. Can’t write anything about the Panthers without bashing him. Your gonna make Mel Kiper look bad if you keep talking about him like that Greggggg.
    On a side note, love to see Mike Smith pouting on the sidelines. Get some class jackass.

  35. bryant824 says: Dec 28, 2010 5:49 AM

    I believe that Eagles beat the Falcons in Philly w/o Vick and mostly DeSean Jackson. It also was an easy win for the eagles.

  36. krow101 says: Dec 28, 2010 6:03 AM

    In today’s world evil usually triumphs. You have to think the Eagles … with their sociopath QB… are the team to beat.

  37. ham1 says: Dec 28, 2010 6:11 AM

    Egirls. What a joke. The team has been, and is stacked with exciting players and talented players yet, it doesnt matter as they will continue to be a loser in any and all superbowl contentions. They are not closers. They allow seasons to slip through their fingers like sand. Root for em egirlies and you can sit home this winter and ponder on how your team did not win another superbowl. Waa “we were so talented”. Again in 2011 we will always be able to respond to your rants ” You never won a superbowl did you?” And so it goes. You with your prepared comebacks to that every year. Get em ready cuz you are not gonna win a superbowl this season either. You should be used to that sinking feeling. Blame it on McNabb, losing Jerome Brown, Jaws, Andre Waters, Harold Carmicheal, Randall Cunningham, Wilbert Montgomery, hell you had Brian Westbrook and Reggie White for crying out loud. Yup, no shortage of talent through the years…but you lose. Over and over you lose, for years and years, the egirls have carved out their place in NFL history. A team that accumulated great players but cant win the big one. Aha, thats probably why yall throw batteries now isnt it?

  38. packeranddarien says: Dec 28, 2010 6:20 AM

    Philly already played at Atlanta and was manhandled anddon’t forget they also lost at the Bears as well.

    Really? You must have watched another game. Anyone with normal eyesight saw a 31-17 beatdown at the hands of Philadelphia with a backup QB.

    You must be in a drunken stupor because your former coach was too stubborn to make an offer to the Eagles for any of the QB on the roster. Your franchise could have had Michael Vick on their roster for a SIXTH round pick.

    But, you chose to stick with Johnny Utah and O-hi-0.

    And where are you now?

  39. eaglesnoles05 says: Dec 28, 2010 6:32 AM

    49ers man: If by “Philly already played atlanta and they were manhandled” you mean “Philly already played atlanta and the Eagles took the falcons out to the woodshed in total domination on all fronts, AND with NFC offensive player of the week Kevin Kolb scorching the Falcons Defense while Mike Vick watched,” then you are exactly right. But I think for some reason you thin atl beat philly?

  40. eaglesnoles05 says: Dec 28, 2010 6:34 AM

    Eagles totally dismantled the falcons, and really are the only team to do it other than the saints. And anyone worth their salt sae that the saints used a defensive gameplane VERY similar to the one the Eagles used vs ATL. Check yo’ facts befo’ you come back, 49erjack.

  41. Dynasty says: Dec 28, 2010 6:42 AM

    VICK will end up in SuperBowl!

  42. chapnastier says: Dec 28, 2010 7:01 AM

    @ Mad555

    You may be the dumbest poster on this website.

  43. tip1984 says: Dec 28, 2010 7:25 AM

    @49erman…

    Eagles beat falcons by 3 scores dude. And that was with Kolb.

  44. brasho says: Dec 28, 2010 7:32 AM

    Observers may look at this game and think that the chance the Bucs get into the playoffs now is diminished, I don’t believe so.

    If NO had lost, I believe that out of the combination of a Tampa win in NO, Giants loss in DC or Packer loss at home to the Bears, the least likely to happen would have been the Bucs beating the Saints in New Orleans.

    Now that the Saints realistically have nothing to play for, they may be resting starters and the Bucs will have a better chance of winning. This may actually help the Bucs in their playoff quest.

  45. realitypolice says: Dec 28, 2010 7:42 AM

    I think we can stop calling the Falcons “underrated”.

    Looks like their rated about right.

  46. stylzinc says: Dec 28, 2010 8:24 AM

    I think they where very lucky they got away with this near fumble http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LY09Wol1a7Q That Could have been a disaster!!!!!

  47. urworstnitemare58 says: Dec 28, 2010 8:36 AM

    We have Rex Ryan with his foot fetish.
    How about Brees and his hand fetish? Dude was licking his hands all night long. He doesn’t even try to hide his odd fetish Everytime they showed him hes lapping away at his paws. Whats the deal Brees? Your center wear edible undies or do you just like the taste of sweaty shorts?

  48. sj39 says: Dec 28, 2010 8:47 AM

    I think the Rams will beat the Seahawks so you Saint’s fans should not be looking past their date in our dome.

  49. xtb3 says: Dec 28, 2010 9:13 AM

    Graham the most overated butterfingers receiver in the league. Not only dropped another pass but came within a fraction of a second from coughing up the ball on a fumble which would have lost this game for the Saints last night in the final minutes.

    Just like on his own his poor ball catching skills and fumblitis nearly cost the Saints the Cowboys game.

    He is no and never will be a Shockey!

  50. bikerhal says: Dec 28, 2010 9:25 AM

    Neither the Falcons nor the Saints are getting much respect and attention in the media. The darlings are the Pats and Steelers and Jets. I know that Atlanta fans hated losing on Monday night. They can talk all they want to about it being a meaningless game. It is as far as the playoff picture, but i know they were hoping to be dominant and pick up some respect. I just don’t think Matty Ice is at the level of leadership where Drew is. Maybe he will some day. He has the talent, but a QB like Drew has to be developed over time; through adversity. Matty hasn’t had any time for that to have happened yet. I am a die=hard Saints fan, but I can still recognize the Falcons are a good team and Smith is a good coach. Still, were it not for missing that chip shot FG in overtime, we would be the no. 1 seed again this year in the NFC. But, that is the way it goes. We had to hear about how Minnesota really won the NFC championship game and we just “lucked out”, but champtions just win. That is what champions do. An 11-4 record doesn’t come from “lucking out”. You have to earn that record. I felt like the Saints had to earn last year’s SB trophy by their play in this season, rather than their record from last season. That is how human nature is. I think they have done that.

  51. bikerhal says: Dec 28, 2010 9:31 AM

    urworstnightmare, you must know nothing about football to make this observation. He does that to get a good grip on the ball. It may be excessive, but I have observed it with other QBs as well. Are you showing jealousy that Matty Ice can’t pull it out at the end? Remember Montana, Young, Aikman, Favre and others? That is a trademark. Drew has 17 such come-from-behind drives on his record.

  52. urworstnitemare58 says: Dec 28, 2010 10:55 AM

    bikerhal, Not a Saints or Falcons fans, but it was a good game and the better team won.
    Thats your theory and I have mine, I’m not saying your right or that I am, but this guy licks his pattys all the time and even while on the sidelines when the defense is out there. The ball is not even being snapped to him. So that kind of blows your theory of making it easier to grip the ball with spit all over your hands, so to me thats a fetish to compete with Rex Ryan,

  53. paulienuts says: Dec 28, 2010 12:32 PM

    Are you idiots frickin’ nuts!!! You’re talking about Brees licking his fingers before taking a snap? I guess this is what you talk about when you don’t have a QB like him leading YOUR team. MORONS!

    By the way, to the particular idiot who says he licks his fingers on the sideline, you’re a bigger idiot, I guess. Watch a game or two and you’ll see that Brees is too busy studying plays and talking to coaches on the sideline.

    Admit it, chumps. The New Orleans Saints ARE the real deal. The Falcons are good, so are the Eagles, and by the way so are Packers, but they’re NOT as good as the Saints. Bring your idiotic chatter to the field just like Roddy ShutDownByOurCBs White and his equally idiotic trash-talking fans…oh yeah, he did and he was a non-factor.

    The Saints go all the way, baby!!!!!

  54. urworstnitemare58 says: Dec 28, 2010 1:36 PM

    paulienuts,
    whats wrong there get a little upset because your QB has a hand licking fetish?If thats his thing than why would you get upset?
    I wonder what your fetish is with a name like paulienuts, you are the MORON.
    Maybe you should watch a bit yourself because it sure looked like everytime they showed him on the sidelines he was just standing there and wasn’t studying anything. Just slurping away on his hands wondering how that ball slipped out of his fingers right into the defenders hands for six.
    You arent as good as you think either, where was all your trash talk last week? Chump!
    The Ravens kicked your butts. Who Dat? The Ravens are Dat, idiot and they owned your hand lapping QB?

  55. paulienuts says: Dec 28, 2010 2:13 PM

    Ha urworstnitemare! You’ll be like all the rest of the trash-talking fans who think THEIR team is the best. Well, the Saints have PROVED they’re the best. You fans are only TALKING.

    I want to see you back here bowing to the champs when you have to eat your words…but you won’t, because you’re like all the rest. Big hat, no cattle.

    Licking his fingers…what a chump. Keep talking!

  56. cowboycjn says: Dec 28, 2010 2:38 PM

    Whats with the dummies making comments in here?? Was not the heading of this article, “Saints make a statement in the Georgia Dome”? Why all the jibberish about the Eagles, rams, and all other teams and bullcrap in here – its Saints vs.Falcons folks. Comment on the game and keep your ugly jealousy to yourself about your personal hang up.
    One is bashing Brees about his method of better gripping the ball, hey if that is his thing to throw better passes so what?? does your QB lick his A## or something?? or do you do it for him?
    If you want class you are watching the wrong sport – go watch ballet or opera. This is a game of inches on the field and the end is WHO wins, thats all. Does not matter how or why they got more points but the winner was the Saints, so go blow it out your tubes if you are a poor sport and cant take the fact that they out played the birds.

  57. urworstnitemare58 says: Dec 28, 2010 3:49 PM

    cowboycjn, hey di#klick if you would have read what I said I gave the Saint’s credit. I’m not a fan of either team and stated the better team won last night. If you think thats why the guy is constantly licking his hands than thats your opinion. So why don’t you blow it out your a$$ bi#ch.

  58. bikerhal says: Dec 28, 2010 4:43 PM

    Nitemare, you may be a lot younger than me, and I am showing my age, because this is an old practice in football. It is a well known fact that some QBs lick their fingers because it helps their ‘touch’ on the ball. If I recall correctly, Ken Stabler was famous for that too. In Drew’s case it may have developed into an unconscious act, but it is misuse of the word to identify it as a fetish. I have not noticed it on the sidelines. Every time I see him He is usually studying photographs.

    Drew is one fine human being, and is deserving of more respect than you are giving him.

  59. urworstnitemare58 says: Dec 29, 2010 10:39 AM

    bikerhal,
    I agree that he is a great QB and is well ahead of most QB’s present and past with his passing and reading defense’s. I also understand that he does alot for the City of NO. I’m not a fan of the Saint’s, but did root for them in the SB.
    But, I’m just saying thats my opinion, but I’m am willing to admit that I’m wrong and apoligize to him.
    I am willing to bet that you are not much older than me if you are at all and if your name fits you than be safe out there bro

  60. bikerhal says: Dec 29, 2010 11:35 AM

    Thanks nitemare, riding is my passion. As for my age, I have followed the Saints since day one, and every loss is etched into my mind! We do appreciate what Drew has done, and it is more than just what he did on the field. He is literally young enough to be my son, but I look up to him as a hero. Dam rare these days too.

  61. urworstnitemare58 says: Dec 29, 2010 4:11 PM

    you bet bikerhal and riding is mylife also and the way people disrespect us anymore I’m sure it will be the death of me someday also.
    We are probably about the same age then. But Goodell is killing the sport these days. The defense can’t hit too hard without being flagged! Players like Lambert, Tatum, and Butkus would be suspended with the way he is changing things. Damn I miss those days.
    Take care and catch ya later.

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