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New Orleans Saints vs Carolina Panthers: Notebook

The Saints improve to 10-3

*With Sunday's win, the Saints improve to 10-3 and move a game ahead of the Carolina Panthers in the NFC South division race. It is the ninth 10-win season in franchise history, five of them coming under Head Coach Sean Payton. The Saints play their next two games on the road, beginning next Sunday against the St. Louis Rams. Kickoff is at 3:25 p.m. CST.

*New Orleans improved to 7-0 at home in 2013, the second time in franchise history the Saints have won at least seven home games.

*The Saints have now won six consecutive games on Sunday Night Football in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

*QB Drew Brees completed 30 of 42 passes for 313 yards, four touchdowns and a passer rating of 124.4.

*On a 22-yard pass to TE Jimmy Graham in the fourth quarter, Brees became the fifth quarterback in NFL history to surpass 50,000 career passing yards. Brees topped the mark in his 183rd career game, the fastest in league history. The previous fastest to the mark was Peyton Manning, who reached 50,000 in his 191st career game. The remainder of the 50,000 yard club includes Brett Favre (71,838), Manning (64,009), Dan Marino (61,361) and John Elway (51,475). Brees ended the night with 50,026 yards.

*Brees increased his season passing yards total to 4,107. He topped the 4,000-yard mark for the eighth consecutive season, an NFL record.

*Brees' 6-yard touchdown pass to WR Marques Colston in the second quarter was his 30th of the season, the sixth straight year he has thrown 30 or more TD passes. That broke a tie with Brett Favre (five straight from 1994-98) for the most consecutive seasons of 30-plus TD passes in NFL history.

[internal-link-placeholder-0]*After being passed earlier in the day by New England QB Tom Brady, Brees regained possession of fourth place on the NFL's career list for touchdown passes Sunday night. Brees now has 357 career TD passes.
Brees' 300-yard passing game was the 76th of his career – second in NFL history to Peyton Manning's 83 – and his 69th in 124 career games as a Saint.

*With his 24th career game of four or more TD passes, Brees snapped a tie with Favre for second place on the NFL's list and trails only Manning, who had his 29th career four-TD game earlier Sunday.
Brees' 30-completion game was his 37th, extending his own NFL mark. Manning is second with 31.

*WR Marques Colston caught nine passes for 125 yards and two touchdowns, the 25th time in his career he has had 100 or more receiving yards in a game. That's the second-most 100-yard games in team history, trailing only Joe Horn's 27.

*Colston's two-touchdown performance was the 14th multiple-TD game of his career and gave him 62 career TD receptions, extending his own franchise record. Colston doubled his season touchdown total Sunday night.

*The 62 touchdown passes from Brees to Colston rank seventh in NFL history and most among active NFL combinations. Brees and Colston moved ahead of San Diego's Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates, who have 61.

*Colston's 21-yard reception in the first quarter moved him beyond the 8,000-yard mark for his career. He is the first Saint and the 87th player in NFL history to top 8,000 career receiving yards.

*TE Jimmy Graham's two touchdown receptions increased his season total to 14, extending his own team record. Graham now ranks second in NFL history for touchdown receptions in a season by a tight end; only New England's Rob Gronkowski (17 in 2011) has more. With his second TD grab of the night, Graham broke a tie with Vernon Davis (2009) and Antonio Gates (2004) for second.

*Graham had six receptions to increase his career total to 289. He moved past Tony Galbreath (285) into seventh place on the Saints' all-time list for career catches.

*RB Darren Sproles' 38-yard run in the first quarter was the longest running play of the season by a Saints back. The previous long was 34 yards by Mark Ingram against Dallas in Week 10.

*The Saints' defense held the Panthers to 239 total yards and 3.9 yards per snap. It was the sixth time in 13 games the Saints have held an opponent to less than 300 total yards, and the second straight home game that the opposition has managed less than four yards per play.

*LB Curtis Lofton led the defense with 10 tackles (six solo).

*The Saints had five sacks on Sunday, increasing their season total to 43, their highest single-season total since 2001.

*DE Junior Galette had a career-best three sacks to improve his season total to nine, which is also a career-high.

*DE Cameron Jordanhad a pair of sacks to increase his team-leading total to 11. He is the first Saint to reach double-digits since Will Smith's 13.5 in 2009.

*K Garrett Hartley had a field goal and four extra points to run his season total to 104 points. He surpassed 100 points in a season for the third time in his career.

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