Sunday Night Football became a showcase for the New Orleans Saints to prove to the football world how good they are on a day where the league was abuzz with praise for the Carolina Panthers. The Saints' dominant win simultaneously cemented their spot atop the NFC South, while throwing water on the Panthers' success -- reminding everyone who the class of the division is.
Passer of the week: Drew Brees, 34-for-41, 392 yards, 4 TD, 0 INT, 139.0 passer rating
When Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee left Sunday night's game, Drew Brees became a shark smelling blood in the water. The Saints quarterback kept attacking the center of the field and exploiting in soft coverage, playing his best game of 2013.
Brees found nine different receivers, throwing his four touchdowns to four different players. That made it impossible for the Dallas defense to key on any one player to stop. It became embarrassing as New Orleans racked up an NFL-record 40 first downs en route to a huge win.
Rusher of the week: Mark Ingram, 14 carries, 145 yards, 1 TD
Enjoy this accolade, because it will probably never happen again.
That seems mean, but there's little doubt Mark Ingram has been an abject disappointment since he arrived in New Orleans in 2011. A career mired in disappointing performances and low yards-per-carry saw new light on Sunday night, when he had the best game of his career.
Ingram had success in the same way as Brees -- he attacked the center of the field where Sean Lee was missing. It became an embarrassing display as he ran for over ten yards per carry and shredded the defense when the Saints weren't soaring through the air.
Receiver of the week: Demaryius Thomas, 7 receptions, 108 yards, 3 TD
Thomas didn't have the largest yardage total of the week, but he made a huge impact in a close game against the San Diego Chargers.
Catching three touchdowns is no small feat, even when they come from Peyton Manning. Thomas is often overlooked when discussing Denver's offense, but he's on pace for a staggering 1,400 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns.
Defender of the week: Vincent Rey, 15 tackles, 3.0 sacks, 1 interception
Rey impacted every phase of the game. He was key in stopping Ray Rice, derailed Joe Flacco and gave his team a chance. The Bengals offense wasn't able to hold up their end of the bargain, but Rey should run away with defensive player of the week honors.