For the second consecutive week, the New Orleans Saints found themselves in an early hole when they hosted the Los Angeles Chargers on "Monday Night Football" at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Oct. 12.
After falling behind 20-3 with 4:25 remaining in the second quarter, Saints quarterback Drew Brees connected with Emmanuel Sanders setting New Orleans up on the 1-yard line. Brees then called his own number using his vintage leap over the top on third-and-goal for the score, cutting the Los Angeles Chargers lead to 20-10 and giving the Black & Gold a sign of life heading into the halftime break.
Brees completed 33-of-47 passes for 325 yards with one passing touchdown, one rushing score, and one interception. Sanders was featured in the Saints passing game once again as star wideout Michael Thomas missed his fourth consecutive game. Sanders hauled in 12 receptions for 122 yards, helping spark the Saints' comeback.
The end result: New Orleans escapes with a 30-27 overtime victory on a 36-yard Wil Lutz field goal with 5:08 remaining in overtime, tying Tampa and Carolina for first place in the NFC South heading into the bye week at 3-2. Lutz's game-winning kick came after Chargers kicker Michael Badgley's 50-yard field-goal attempt clanked off the right upright as time expired in regulation.
Trailing 27-20 with under four minutes to play in regulation, Brees connected with Alvin Kamara on a spectacular 28-yard juggling catch, setting up New Orleans inside the red zone. Quarterback Taysom Hill tied the score with 52 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter on a 9-yard scamper for the score.
"I'm proud of how we fought back in the second half," Saints Coach Sean Payton said during his postgame press conference. "We played better football, not exclusively, but at times made enough plays to win the game."
Kamara finished with eight catches for 74 yards, and 11 rushes for 45 yards. His counterpart Latavius Murray carried the ball eight times for 34 yards.
Chargers rookie quarterback Justin Herbert led the way for the Bolts, completing 20-of-34 passes for 264 yards and four scores, including a 64-yard strike to Mike Williams with 3:40 remaining in the contest to give L.A. a 27-20 lead. Herbert was sacked three times, once by Trey Hendrickson, once by Sheldon Rankins and a third time by Hendrickson and Cameron Jordan. Cornerback Marshon Lattimore sealed the overtime win with a crucial fourth down tackle of receiver Mike Williams.
With 1.5 sacks against the Chargers on Monday night, Hendrickson notched a new career high. He leads the Saints with 4.5 sacks.
Brees entered the night 1-48 in his career when trailing by at least 17 points. The win improves his record to 2-48 in such games.
The New Orleans Saints (3-2) and Los Angeles Chargers (1-4) are both headed into bye weeks.
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