Second quarter update: The New Orleans Saints erupted for 17 points in the period to take a 17-16 lead over the Houston Texans on Sunday at Reliant Stadium.
The Saints scored on quarterback Drew Brees' final possession as he led the team on a three-play, 80-yard touchdown drive capped by a 51-yard catch-and-run TD by running back Pierre Thomas.
The Saints' defense stiffened in the period as it held the Texans to two Randy Bullock field goals, one from 55 yards. Cameron Jordan and Glenn Foster had sacks but outside linebacker Will Smith had to leave the game after his right leg was rolled up on during Jordan's sack.
Backup Luke McCown replaced Brees midway through the period and drove the Saints to a 51-yard Garrett Hartley field goal and a nice 14-yard TD pass to rookie receiver Kenny Stills was 1:14 left in the period. McCown moved the team 90 yards on seven plays in just two minutes on the touchdown drive.
Key stats: Saints, Drew Brees, 4 of 6, 104 yards, 1 TD; Luke McCown, 8 of 12, 104 yards, 1 TD. Texans: Matt Schaub, 14 of 25, 202 yards; Ben Tate, 11 carries for 74 yards, 1 TD; Andre Johnson, seven catches for 131 yards.