Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Saints 34, Bengals 30

New Orleans wide receiver Marques Colston catches a 3-yard pass from Drew Brees for the winning touchdown, beating Cincinnati cornerback Johnathan Joseph, top.

Getty Images

New Orleans wide receiver Marques Colston catches a 3-yard pass from Drew Brees for the winning touchdown, beating Cincinnati cornerback Johnathan Joseph, top.

CINCINNATI — Drew Brees isn't just a Super Bowl MVP. He's also a convincing actor with the game on the line.

Brees passed Archie Manning as the Saints' all-time leading passer Sunday, then rallied New Orleans to its fifth straight win, 34-30 over the Bengals, with a little impromptu at the line of scrimmage in the final minute.

Trailing by three, the Saints had fourth and 2 at the Cincinnati 7-yard line with 34 seconds left. A field goal would have set up overtime.

New Orleans called timeout and ran a gambit called "No-Brainer Freeze." The Saints line up as if they're going to snap it and try to draw the other team offside. If it doesn't work, they let the play clock run out, take the 5-yard penalty and send in the kicker.

"That's a very realistic situation for us," Brees said. "We're not going to snap it if we can get them to jump."

To the surprise of the 59,963 fans and both sidelines, that was exactly what happened.

"Drew Brees did a great job with the snap count and tried to create the illusion we were going for it, when really we're just going to let the time run out," coach Sean Payton said.

Lineman Pat Sims bought it, jumping across the line for a penalty that gave the shocked Saints a first down. Brees threw the winning 3-yard score to Marques Colston on the next play.

"What is that guy doing?" Saints defensive lineman Sedrick Ellis said. "You have to be smarter than that."

Brees' 42-yard pass to Robert Meachem moved the Saints into field-goal range and set the stage for the last-minute win.

For Cincinnati, it was another unbelievable ending in a season quickly becoming one of its worst. The defending AFC North champions have lost nine in a row for only the third time ever.

"I thought we had it," said Bengals receiver Chad Ochocinco, who had five catches for 96 yards during a second-half comeback.

Manning threw for 21,734 yards in 11 seasons. Brees, with 21,932, topped that mark in five years with the Saints.

Saints31071434
Bengals0661830

Saints 34, Bengals 30 12/05/10 [Last modified: Sunday, December 5, 2010 11:23pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays morning after: 5 mistakes that led to loss to Blue Jays

    Blogs

    We've already documented elsewhere what the Rays didn't do, how they failed to take advantage of a prime opportunity to win Wednesday's game, getting just one run after loading the bases in the seventh with one out and three of …

    Jake Faria make too many mistakes, the failure to execute costing him repeatedly.
  2. Rays have their chances, but end up with another loss (w/video)

    The Heater

    TORONTO — The litany of games the Rays have given away this season is long enough, arguably too lengthy. So the only way to get to the postseason is make up for some of those losses by grabbing some wins when the opportunity is presented, especially at this time of year when the margin is diminished and the stakes …

    Associated Press
  3. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Wednesday's Rays-Blue Jays game

    The Heater

    You wonder if the scouting reports and/or workload are catching up to rookie RHP Jake Faria. The bottom line wasn't bad again, three runs in 51/3 innings, but he's having to work harder to get there.

  4. Rays journal: Chris Archer eager for eventful final stretch

    The Heater

    TORONTO — RHP Chris Archer takes the mound today for the Rays as they head into the final 40 games of the season with little margin for error as they battle for an American League playoff spot.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Chris Archer (22) takes a moment on the mound in the second inning of the game between the Milwaukee Brewers and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, August 6, 2017.
  5. Tim Tebow's slump continues, as does fan support

    Sports

    CLEARWATER — On July 29, playing against the Charlotte Stone Crabs, Tim Tebow smacked a mammoth three-run homer, helping the St. Lucie Mets cruise to a 10-3 victory at Charlotte Sports Park.

    St. Lucie’s Tim Tebow, shown Monday at Spectrum Field, struggled at the plate Wednesday against the Threshers.