The New Orleans Saints rebounded from a Week 9 loss with a 49-17 rout of the Dallas Cowboys that left the NFC East as the only National Football League division without a team possessing a winning record.
Drew Brees passed for 392 yards and four touchdowns last night in New Orleans as the Saints (7-2) amassed 625 yards of offense and an NFL-record 40 first downs.
Dallas fell to 5-5 and is tied atop the NFC East with the Philadelphia Eagles, who beat the Green Bay Packers 27-13 at Lambeau Field as Nick Foles followed his record-tying seven touchdown performance with three scoring passes. The New York Giants pulled within 1 1/2 games of the division lead with a third straight win following their 0-6 start, scoring the final 10 points in yesterday’s 24-20 victory over the Oakland Raiders.
“We’re trying to go one game at a time and see where we are,” Giants coach Tom Coughlin said during a news conference. “We just made it another notch closer.”
The Giants next play the Packers (5-4), who lost their second straight game since losing 2011 NFL Most Valuable Player Aaron Rodgers to a shoulder injury. Third-string quarterback Scott Tolzien played for the Packers yesterday after Seneca Wallace suffered a groin injury on his team’s opening drive.
Peyton Manning threw at least four touchdown passes for the fifth time this season as the Denver Broncos (8-1) held on for a 28-20 win over the San Diego Chargers (4-5). Manning and Demaryius Thomas hooked up for touchdowns on three straight possessions spanning the second and third quarters as the Broncos opened a 28-6 lead in San Diego.
Manning’s 33 touchdowns are tied with Tom Brady’s 2007 tally for the most through the first nine games of an NFL season. Manning said he’ll undergo tests today after suffering an undisclosed left leg injury during the fourth quarter.
The Detroit Lions (6-3) took over first place in the NFC North Division with a 21-19 win over the Chicago Bears (5-4). Matthew Stafford threw three touchdown passes for the Lions, including two to Calvin Johnson.
The Baltimore Ravens gave up a tying touchdown on a desperation pass on the final play of the fourth quarter before beating the Cincinnati Bengals 20-17 on a 46-yard field goal by Justin Tucker on the second possession of overtime. The Bengals (6-4) forced overtime when Andy Dalton’s 51-yard heave into the end zone was caught by A.J. Green after it was tipped into the air by James Ihedigbo of the Ravens (4-5).
The Seattle Seahawks improved to 9-1 with a 33-10 win over the Atlanta Falcons (2-7), avenging a defeat at the Georgia Dome in last season’s playoffs. Russell Wilson threw two touchdown passes for the Seahawks and Marshawn Lynch rushed for 145 yards and a score.
The Jacksonville Jaguars (1-8) won their first game of the season, 29-27 over Tennessee, by taking advantage of four turnovers by the Titans (4-5), who were listed by oddsmakers as 11 1/2-point favorites. Will Blackmon scored a touchdown for the Jaguars on a 21-yard fumble return with two minutes, 32 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
The St. Louis Rams (4-6) pulled off a 38-8 upset of the Indianapolis Colts (6-3) as rookie Tavon Austin scored touchdowns of 98, 57 and 81 yards, while the Carolina Panthers (6-3) extended their winning streak to five games with a 10-9 victory over the San Francisco 49ers (6-3), who had a five-game winning streak halted.
Elsewhere, it was Pittsburgh 23, Buffalo 10; and Arizona 27, Houston 24. It was the seventh straight loss for the Texans (2-7), who were coached by defensive Wade Phillips while Gary Kubiak recovers from a mini-stroke he suffered during a Nov. 3 loss to the Colts.
Week 10 play -- which began Nov. 7 with a 34-27 win for the Minnesota Vikings (2-7) against the Washington Redskins (3-6) -- concludes tonight as the winless Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-8) host the Miami Dolphins (4-4).
In New Orleans, Brees connected on 34-of-41 passes as the Saints scored seven touchdowns and outgained the Cowboys 625-193 in total yardage. The tally was the most ever allowed by Dallas, surpassing the 623 given up in a Week 8 loss to the Detroit Lions. Saints defensive coordinator Rob Ryan was fired from the same position with the Cowboys after last season.
“As players, we wanted to go out there and get this win for Rob,” Saints linebacker Curtis Lofton said.
Darren Sproles and Pierre Thomas each scored two touchdowns for the Saints, who finished with only three fewer first downs than the Cowboys’ total 43 offensive plays.
Tony Romo completed 10-of-24 passes for 128 yards and a touchdown for Dallas.
In East Rutherford, New Jersey, the Giants scored on a blocked punt by Cooper Taylor and a five-yard pass from Manning to Rueben Randle, yet trailed 17-14 at halftime as Tracy Porter returned Manning’s league-leading 16th interception of the season 43 yards for a touchdown.
Sebastian Janikowski kicked his second field goal of the game to push the Raiders’ lead to 20-14 before Andre Brown, playing for the first time since fracturing a leg bone during the preseason, scored on a one-yard run for the Giants with 2:15 left in the third quarter. Brown had been activated three days ago and rushed for 115 yards on 30 carries.
“He gave us what we needed,” Coughlin said. “He had a little spark out there.”
The Kansas City Chiefs (9-0), the only undefeated team in the league, New York Jets (5-4), New England Patriots (7-2) and Cleveland Browns (4-5) don’t play this week.