Charlotte, N.C. - Luke McCown, starting in place on an injured Drew Brees, led the New Orleans Saints to a 10-10 halftime tie with the Carolina Panthers on Sunday at Bank of America Stadium.
McCown was decisive and efficient in his first NFL start since 2011, completing his first five passes and ending the half 16 of 17 for 124 yards. McCown completed passes to nine Saints with Brandin Cooks, Ben Watson and Willie Snead leading the way with three catches each.
Mark Ingram as the Saints' top rusher with eight carries for 33 yards.
The Saints completed four out of six third-down attempts and were penalized just three times for 20 yards.
Panthers quarterback Cam Newton led his team on a 12-play 80-yard drive that was capped by an 11-yard touchdown pass to tight end Greg Olsen. The Panthers tight end also caught a 52-yard pass from Newton late in the second quarter and finished the half with five catches for 109 yards. The Panthers tied the score on a 24-yard Graham Gano field goal with two seconds left in the half.
Newton finished the half 11 of 16 for 177 yards. Jonathan Stewart was the team's leading rusher with six carries for 18 yards.