The New Orleans Saints (10-3) travel to the Minnesota Vikings (2-11) this Sunday for a Noon CT kickoff at Mall of America Field. The Saints enter their contest with the Vikings on a fivegame winning streak after an impressive 22-17 win over the Tennessee Titans at LP Field last Sunday.
QB Drew Brees started the game against the Titans strong as he completed 12 of his first 14 passes and threw two fourth quarter TD passes to WR Marques Colston. Brees finished 36 of 47 for 337 yards as he tied the NFL record with his tenth 300-yard game of the season and wrapped up the day with 4,368 passing yards, the highest NFL's total ever through 13 games. The key the to the Saints offensive success was their efficiency on third down as they converted 11 of 19 third-down plays. Tennessee finished 1 of 10 in third down efficiency.
The Saints rushed for 114 yards as a team as RB Chris Ivory led the way with 13 carries for 53 yards. Colston led New Orleans with seven catches for 105 yards with two touchdowns. In addition to a standout defensive effort on third down, New Orleans denied Tennessee in two final fourth quarter opportunities in Saints territory.
Trailing 22-15 at the New Orleans five-yard line, LB Jo-Lonn Dunbar sacked Titans QB Jake Locker for a three yard loss on the game's final play to preserve the victory. S Malcolm Jenkins led New Orleans with nine solo tackles, with five coming in that crucial fourth quarter. Following Denver's win over Chicago later in the afternoon, New Orleans clinched their third consecutive playoff berth. However, with a potential NFC South title and first round bye in their sights, the visit to Minnesota will be of utmost importance.
GAMEDAY AT A GLANCE
DATE: Sunday, Dec. 18
TIME: 12:00 (CT)
SITE: Mall of America Field
*The Vikings lead the series 18-8.
*New Orleans is ranked first in the NFL in offense (eighth rushing and first passing) and 27th in defense (15th rushing and 30th passing).
*Sunday's contest will be regionally televised on FOX (WVUE-8 in the New Orleans area) with Dick Stockton handling play-by-play, John Lynch serving as color analyst and Jennifer Hale as sideline reporter.
*A national radio broadcast is on Westwood One with Mark Champion handling play-byplay and Mark Malone as color analyst.
*The game can be heard throughout the Gulf Coast on the Saints Radio Network (870 AM or 105.3 FM serve as the flagship stations locally in the New Orleans area) with Jim Henderson handling play-by-play duties, Hokie Gajan serving as color analyst and Kristian Garic reporting from the Saints sideline.
*A Spanish language broadcast is available on WFNO 830 AM with Victor Quinonez handling play-by-play duties and Marco Garcia serving as the color analyst.