Official team photos from the New Orleans Saints vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Sunday, October 5, 2014. Photos by Michael C. Hebert (New Orleans Saints photos)
The New Orleans Saints staged a stirring comeback to defeat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 37-31 in overtime Sunday at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
Running back Khiry Robinson won the game on an 18-yard scamper down the left side with 9:24 remaining in the overtime period. The Saints won the toss and marched 80 yards in 12 plays, converting a couple of key third-down conversions.
The win improved the Saints to 2-3 heading into the bye while the loss dropped Tampa to 1-4.
Robinson finished with 89 yards on 21 carries and fellow running back Pierre Thomas had an outstanding game with two touchdowns (a 27-yard run and 15-yard reception). He finished with four carries for 35 yards and eight catches for 77 yards.
Quarterback Drew Brees had an up-and-down day with three interceptions to go along with his two TD passes. He finished 35 of 57 for 371 yards.
The Saints lost star tight end Jimmy Graham to injury in the first half and had to finish the game without linebacker Ramon Humber, center Jonathan Goodwin and cornerback Patrick Robinson, who made his first interception of the season in the first half.
After leading 13-0, the Saints gave up 24 unanswered points to the Bucs to trail 24-13 and eventually 31-20. But a Junior Galette safety of Tampa Bay quarterback Mike Glennon made it Bucs 31, Saints 28 and Shayne Graham made a 44-yard field goal to tie the score with 2:30 to play.
Glennon finished 19 of 32 for 249 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Bucs running back Doug Martin had 45 yards on 14 carries. Tampa Bay cornerbacks Johnathan Banks and Alterraun Verner and linebacker Danny Lansanah each made one interception.
Rookie Brandin Cooks had nine receptions for 56 yards and Ben Watson had five for 43. In team stats, the Saints finished with 511 yards of offense, 34 first downs with 46 percent conversion rate on third down (6 of 13). The Bucs finished with 314 yards, 20 first downs and were 3 of 9 on third down. Tampa was hurt throughout the game by penalties. The Bucs finished with 15 penalties for 113.
The Saints have this week off and won't play again until Oct. 19 at Detroit (3-2). The Saints are in a tie for second place in the NFC South with Atlanta (2-3).