Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE
The NFL's lone undefeated team is in trouble against New Orleans.
All week, there's been a big buzz that the Atlanta Falcons' reign as the NFL's last undefeated team would be coming to an end. The Falcons were coming off a hard-fought win over the Cowboys last week, playing on the road, against a heated rival. It's hard enough for a team to sustain extended focus over the course of a 16-game season and even harder when there's a big target on its back.
And after the first half against the Saints, Atlanta is in a dogfight, trailing, 21-17. Drew Brees is locked in, connecting with Jimmy Graham for two scores. New Orleans' running game finally showed up, collecting 116 yards, thanks in large part to a 55-yard touchdown run by Chris Ivory.
The Falcons are far from out of it. Matt Ryan has been efficient and has just four incompletions so far. But the defense, which has been shaky at times all year, will need to get some stops. When the Saints passing attack gets going, it's hard to outscore them.