You join this weeks Saints helmet analysis near the start of the 2nd Quarter as, like the complete amateur I am, I was still eating when the game kicked off. The Saints are trailing the Falcons 14 to 7 following an 8 play opening drive Michael Turner touchdown for the Falcons, a stupendous Pierre Thomas 24 yard touchdown run in answer and a Falcon fumble recovery for 7 more.
We pick up the game in the 2nd Quarter with 10.38 on the clock and... The Beast Colston pulls in a touchdown catch with a great leap just as the fingers hit the keyboard.
Atlanta 14 Saints 14.
ESPN analyst states - Tracy Porter 45 attempts against him this season, only 24 completions just as Ryan connects to White over his head. The Falcons are driving.
Michael Turner breaks to the outside for a 37 yard gain (85 yards to date in game). The Saints need to stuff him up quick or this game will go to the wire (and I don't mean the HBO series based in Baltimore).
The Saints stop the Falcons at the 16 after a dropped pass on 3rd and 7. Jason Elam comes in and hits the post from 34 and family Falconer high 5 one another.
7.28 - Saints ball.
Brees to Shockey for 6. Pierre Thomas on 2nd and 4 breaks to the outside for a gain of 29. Great burst of speed. ESPN crew are talking about Pierre Thomas - More 15 yard gains than any back in football (16% of runs for 15 or more - highest in NFL). Nice stat guys, I did not know that despite my dedicated post 'Pierre Thomas Jersey sales set to jump' last week.
Brees to Lance Moore for a 1st down. Mickey Loomis, the Saints General Manager, is being praised by Analyst Jon Gruden for putting together this team of undrafted picks and free agents. Who am I to argue? In fact that theme is on my blogging to do list next week but that's neither here nor there right now.
Stuffed run and a penalty pushes the Saints to 2nd and 21 at the Falcon 39. Brees to Henderson but Fred Grimes makes a huge leap to intercept Brees. Nick Knackers!
3.54 - Falcons ball at their own 19.
The Saints put pressure on Ryan on successive plays and force the Falcons to punt. Jabari Greer did well to break up the 3rd and 6 pass.
2.46 - Saints ball on their own 20.
Brees to Colston for 15, perfect pass over the middle. Brees to Bush for 6 yards in the flat. Brees pumps the Gatorade into his mouth in his own inimitable style.
Brees to Meachem for 30 down the middle to bring up the 2 minute warning. Ball at the Falcon 28. This is looking good.
Brees to Henderson down the left sideline to the Falcon 4. Hell of a catch by Henderson, the speedster looks sharp.
1.49 - 1st and goal.
Come on boys, let's get the go ahead touchdown. Analysts are eulogising about the receiving corpse and Sean Payton, soon to be known as Lord Payton of Pimlico.
Pierre Thomas down to the 1. Now the Analysts are saying both guards should go to pro bowl. Reggie Bush takes a toss to the left and... TOUCHDOWN!! Reggie made it look easy.
Falcons 14, Saints 21.
That marks 3 80 yard drives by the Saints in the first half. Not bad going at all. The Brees to Henderson pass was key and an absolute highlight catch.
Jon Gruden is blowing more smoke up Brees and Paytons asses. "I spent days at their training camp and it was quite something" he states to a national audience hanging on his every word. "To see those guys work is to see brilliant football players in action". He then goes on to say "I think the Saints deserve to win the Super Bowl as New Orleans is the best city in the World and they have a dedicated blogger called Peter Falconer who is the best in the business" (WARNING - Last part may have been made up)...
Brees and Payton are finally getting the respect they deserve. I feel good for Drew, he more than deserves it. Stat flashes up that confirms Brees leads the NFL in 20+ yard pass completions this season. You're damn tootin!
1.00 on the 1st half clock. Falcon ball at their own 33 yard line.
Oh my - Jabari Greer picks off Ryan and returns it 48 yards for an outstanding TOUCHDOWN. 14th interception of the year and 5th returned for a TD by a Saint.
What did I say in my Saints Falcons preview? Hey? Hey? About the Defence playing a major part with a game changing TD? OK don't get full of yourself Falconer.
Falcons 14 Saints 28 with 40 seconds left in the half.
1st down to Gonzalez at the Falcons 48 with 15 seconds left. Sharper gave him a heck of a 'Hey man, you don't need that air in your lungs now do ya?' kind of shot.
Umpires have stopped the game to discuss embroidery patterns for the perfect quilt... or it may be to reset the play clock, AGAIN. Someone in the Dome (Chef Who Dat maybe?) keeps knocking seconds off the stadium clock.
Pass to Gonzalez and the Falcons are just within field goal range at the the New Orleans 33 with 9 seconds left.
So Elam comes in, getting that Cancan leg swinging and... Well WIDE and LOW. Get the feck OUT A HERE!!
So the Saints go in at half time 28 to 14 up and I'm off to drink a beer. See you in the second half folks.