Coach Sean Payton was nursing a broken leg, but that was the only thing even slightly askew for the New Orleans Saints on this day a decade ago.
In the Caesars Superdome that night, the Saints walloped the Indianapolis Colts 62-7 in a game that might not have been as close as the final score indicated. And while Payton was sitting in a booth high above the field with his broken leg – an injury that occurred in the previous game, when he was rolled up in a tackle on the sideline against Tampa Bay – offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael made his solo play-calling debut against the Colts.
It went well.
En route to raising their record to 5-2, the Saints amassed 557 yards of offense. Quarterback Drew Brees completed 31 of 35 passes for 325 yards and five touchdowns, with no interceptions, New Orleans rushed for 236 yards and the offense averaged 7.4 yards per play on 75 plays.
The Saints were 7 for 8 in the red zone, registered 36 first downs and went 6 for 8 on third down.
On October 23, 2011, offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael made his solo play-calling debut for the Saints in New Orleans' 62-7 dominant victory over the Indianapolis Colts.
And they weren't shabby on defense, either: three forced turnovers, one defensive touchdown and one score allowed.
"I think the players made a ton of plays," Carmichael said this week. "We had some turnovers, it just gave us good field position. It was just one of those nights where just everything seemed to go right.
"We were running the ball well, we weren't having to get into many third-down situations and in that case, it makes it a lot easier as a play-caller. When you're running the ball well, that's your best friend. Our special teams played well, they had some good plays, and our defense had some turnovers.
"It just puts you in a situation where it was just one of those nights."
It was a night where everything was in peak working condition for the Saints on offense, even without their head coach.
"We had a great game plan," Brees said after the game. "We played with a lot of confidence. Pete did a phenomenal job. It was just our night, one of those games that doesn't come along too often."