News

Saints shackle Falcons to maintain edge over Panthers

Saints shackle Falcons to maintain edge over Panthers

SAINTS SHACKLE FALCONS: New Orleans Saints safety Malcolm Jenkins (27) and Atlanta Falcons punter Matt Bosher (5) and place kicker Matt Bryant (3) react after a missed field goal late in the game during the second half. Photo: Reuters

(Reuters) – The New Orleans Saints ground out a vital 17-13 win over the struggling Atlanta Falcons on Thursday to maintain their division lead over a surging Carolina Panthers.

The Saints were far from their best in the road game but improved to 9-2 on the season with their third straight win while the Falcons slumped to 2-9 following a fifth consecutive loss.

After leading by a single point at halftime, a Garrett Hartley field goal supplied the only score of a grinding second half for the visitors.

Falcons wide receiver Darius Johnson fumbled early in the fourth quarter while in a scoring position, coughing up a key turnover in the home side’s quest for an upset victory.

New Orleans remains top of the NFC South division with the Panthers (7-3) in the midst of a six-game winning run and a game in hand against Miami on Sunday.

Saints quarterback Drew Brees completed 23-of-33 passes for 278 yards and two touchdowns while tight-end James Graham had a 100-yard receiving game from just five receptions.

“We knew what type of game it was going to be. I guess nine of our last 12 games with these guys have gone down to the last possession and it did again today,” Brees told reporters.

“They are a great football team despite what their record might say and we knew that.

“Obviously, any time you go on the road in your division it is hard to get a win so we battled on both sides of the ball, played very well, gritted it out and got the win.”

Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan completed 30-of-39 passes for 297 yards but failed to throw for a score.

The home side showed plenty of intent from the outset, marching down the field in the opening drive with Steven Jackson capping it off with a one-yard touchdown run and an early 7-0 Falcons lead.

However, the Saints matched them by scoring on their opening drive, Benjamin Watson the beneficiary of a one-yard pass from Brees to tie it up at the end of the first quarter.

Atlanta kicker Matt Bryant gave his side a 10-7 lead with a 39-yard field goal before Brees found James Graham with a long bomb, and he took it to the end zone for a 44-yard score.

Another Bryant field goal as the half came to a close gave the visiting Saints a slender 14-13 halftime lead.

Hartley extended the advantage to 17-13 with a field goal early in the second half and the four-point margin held firm.

What's On 'KLH?

9th Annual STICKY FINGERS

StickyFingers2014_KLH_int_wp

Sample and judge the best BBQ, Chili, Wings, Dessert and Cheesy creations at the Waukesha Expo on Sunday, Oct 5th!

Hire Me MKE

HireMeMKE_620x400

Looking for a job around the Milwaukee area? Check out some openings>>

Wanna Play DJ?

HEYMOM

You can host your own show Sunday night at 6 on ‘KLH!

Recent Headlines

in Entertainment, Sports

‘NBA 2K15′ adds 3D face mapping for latest game

Fresh
nba

"NBA 2K15" is angling for a slam dunk with an innovative new feature that allows players to put their game faces on.

in Music

Motley Crue’s final gig to be at Whisky a Go Go

Fresh
vinceneil

Vince Neil has let slip plans for the band's final shows, revealing they will return to the site of their first gigs.

in Entertainment

‘Easy Rider’ chopper on the auction block

Fresh
easyrider

Peter Fonda's iconic "Captain America" Harley-Davidson is set to sell for more than $1 million.