- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 25, 2008

NEW ORLEANS | Drew Brees and Deuce McAllister gave Saints fans what they longed to see after 43 days away from the Louisiana Superdome.

Brees threw for four scores, McAllister set a Saints record with his 54th career touchdown and New Orleans rolled to a 51-29 victory over the Green Bay Packers on Monday night.

Brees dismantled a Packers secondary that came in ranked third in the NFL with 176.3 yards passing allowed a game. He was 20-for-26 for 323 yards as New Orleans tied a club record for points scored in a game. Two of his touchdowns went to Lance Moore, one for 70 yards.

The Saints quarterback remained on pace to break Dan Marino’s 1984 record of 5,084 yards passing in a season. He has 3,574 yards with five games remaining. He also has the Saints (6-5) feeling better about their hopes of rallying for a playoff spot now that they have won two games in a row for the first time all season.

The Packers (5-6) dropped a game behind Minnesota and Chicago in the race for first in the NFC North.

Aaron Rodgers’ attempt to keep up with Brees’ torrid passing resulted in three interceptions, two by Jason David and one by Kevin Kaesviharn. David returned his first pick to the 3, setting up McAllister’s scoring run, which broke Dalton Hilliard’s club record set in 1993.

Rodgers was 23-for-41 for 248 yards and touchdown passes of 7 yards to Greg Jennings and 4 yards to Ruvell Martin. Rodgers also ran for a 10-yard score. Ryan Grant rushed for 64 yards in the first half, but the Packers were forced to throw more as their deficit grew, and Grant finished with only 67 yards.

Leading 24-21 at the half, the Saints began to seize control with a long touchdown drive that ended with Brees’ 16-yard strike to tight end Billy Miller. McAllister then went in from the 3, and Brees hit Marques Colston in stride down the sideline for his second 70-yard touchdown pass of the game. It was Colston’s first score of the season after battling back from a thumb injury on opening day.

Pierre Thomas added two touchdown runs, a 4-yarder in the first half and a 31-yard scamper in the fourth quarter that gave New Orleans a 51-29 lead. The Saints had scored 51 points twice before in their four-decade history and easily could have reached 52 if coach Sean Payton had elected to kick the extra point. However, Payton called for a two-point conversion that failed in attempt to go up by 24 points.

The Packers scored first on a 1-yard touchdown leap by fullback John Kuhn. It was the first rushing touchdown for Kuhn in his three-year career and only his eighth carry.

But that would be Green Bay’s last lead. Moore’s 70-yard score came on the Saints’ next play, and New Orleans took the lead on Thomas’ first touchdown run. Green Bay tied it at 14-14 and again at 21-21 before New Orleans took the lead for good shortly before halftime on Garrett Hartley’s 30-yard field goal.

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