Monday, October 26, 2009
Sports NewsMayfield's Mutterings: Cardinals NL Central kings again

Unbeaten Saints rally past Dolphins 46-34

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[October 26, 2009]  MIAMI (AP) -- For most of the first half, the New Orleans Saints could hardly make a first down. Later there was no stopping them, as usual.

RestaurantThe unbeaten Saints overcame an early 21-point deficit, mounting touchdown drives of 82, 79 and 60 yards on successive possessions in the second half to overtake the Miami Dolphins 46-34 Sunday.

NFL passing leader Drew Brees had his worst day of the season, with three interceptions and five sacks. But he scored twice, the second time on a 2-yard keeper with 8:35 left to give the Saints their first lead.

Tracy Porter's 54-yard interception return sealed the win for the Saints (6-0), off to their best start since 1991. The league's highest-scoring team topped 40 points for the fourth time.


Miami (2-4) fell 2 1/2 games behind AFC East leader New England.

The Dolphins' Ricky Williams carried only nine times but tied a career high with three touchdowns rushing, including a 68-yard run, the longest of his career. By the time the Saints picked up their second first down 22 minutes into the game, the Dolphins led 24-3.

It was the first time the Saints had trailed this season.

Miami then let them back into the game with two turnovers. After Davone Bess lost a fumble at midfield late in the first half, Marques Colston caught a 21-yard pass that was initially ruled a TD. When a replay review with 5 seconds left determined the ball should instead be placed at the half-yard line, the Dolphins called timeout.

The Saints then decided to run another play rather than settle for a field goal, and Brees plunged across the goal line to make the score 24-10.

New Orleans struck again barely a minute into the second half when Darren Sharper scored on an interception return for the third time this season. The 42-yard runback came after he snatched a pass that deflected off the hands of receiver Ted Ginn Jr.

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The pace of scoring soon became frantic, with three touchdowns in less than three minutes. The Saints drove 82 yards for a score to pull within 27-24, but Miami's Brian Hartline turned a short pass into a 67-yard gain to set up Williams' third score.

Jeremy Shockey then broke two tackles on a 66-yard reception for New Orleans, and two plays later Reggie Bush scored from 10 yards out on a reverse, capping his run with a balletic leap near the pylon.

The Saints forced a punt and mounted the go-ahead drive capped by Brees' score, which made it 37-34. John Carney hooked the extra-point try wide, but he hit a 20-yard field goal with 3:23 left.

Trying to mount their own comeback, the Dolphins dropped two passes and committed two penalties before Chad Henne was intercepted by Porter on fourth-and-13.

Brees came into the game with two interceptions and four sacks all season, but the Dolphins mounted a fierce pass rush early. And the Saints looked sloppy at the start -- by the time they ran their fifth play, they had been penalized twice for false starts and once for delay of game.

[Associated Press; By STEVEN WINE]

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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