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“There was no panic,” Brees said. “It was almost like we knew the game would come down to something like this. We just wanted that opportunity and the defense gave it to us.”

Romo also had a pair of 58-yard scoring passes to Dez Bryant, who had a career-high 224 yards receiving. Romo was 26 of 43 and broke his own franchise record for passing yards in a season. He has 4,685.

The Saints, coming off a 41-0 blowout of Tampa Bay, took the lead in the third quarter after a 54-yard punt pinned Dallas at its 3. On the first play, Curtis Lofton stripped DeMarco Murray and Lofton recovered at the 5. Brees found Pierre Thomas open at the goal line for a 24-17 lead.

Brees was 37 of 53 in the ninth 400-yard game of his career.

“I don’t know how many more accolades I have to say about him,” Saints interim coach Joe Vitt said. “You want me to put them on my W2 form or what?”

The Cowboys put the Saints at their 2 with a 63-yard punt on their next possession, but Brees responded with a touchdown drive keyed by a 60-yard completion to Colston, who had 153 yards receiving. Colston broke a tackle by Gerald Sensabaugh before Sterling Moore ran him down at the Dallas 3.

The Saints turned a 14-7 deficit late in the first half into a 17-14 halftime lead in the final 1:11.

Brees led a 90-yard scoring drive that included Vitt changing his mind and going on fourth-and-1 from the Dallas 23. A completion to Colston was overturned on replay, but Cowboys linebacker Anthony Spencer lined up offside to give the Saints a first down anyway. Brees threw a 6-yard scoring pass to Lance Moore three plays later.

NOTES: Dallas tight end Jason Witten had two catches in OT, breaking Tony Gonzalez’s NFL season record of 102 catches for a tight end set in 2004. Witten has 103. … Cowboys LB Ernie Sims left in the first half with dizziness a week after sustaining a concussion. … Saints CB Jabari Greer, who had two interceptions last week, left the game with a concussion.