Story by Brad Friedman*
A San Francisco 11-play, 75-yard drive, which ended in a 5-yard Carlos Hyde touchdown, kicked off this week's *Madden 17 *simulation.
From that point on, New Orleans's defense shut the door and threw away the key.
The drive went on to account for one third of San Francisco's total offense (226 yards) as New Orleans stifled the 49ers attack en route to a commanding 31-10 road victory.
San Francisco's other score came in the form of a 37-yard Phil Dawson field goal early in the fourth quarter, but even that drive proved to be difficult to come by. The Saints supplied a constant dose of pressure to Colin Kaepernick, sacking him and picking him off twice and limiting him to 156 yards on 14-of-28 passing.
Hyde was largely held in check as well, rushing for 64 yards and picking up an additional 11 through the air.
A gritty defensive performance was complimented by a fairly standard day at the office, by Drew Brees's lofty terms. Brees tossed three touchdowns, two to Brandin Cooks and one to Coby Fleener, en route to a 298-yard performance on 29-of-39 passing. Cooks and Fleener finished with 123 and 34 yards, respectively.
Mark Ingram tacked on a 2-yard touchdown run in the third to cap off a 28-0 "run" after San Francisco's opening drive to more or less put the game on ice.