The Falcons let the Saints hang in the game and gave them every opportunity to win the game despite intercepting Brees five times. That’s the most interceptions Brees has ever thrown in a single game.
Brees also failed to throw a touchdown pass for the first time in 55 games. His consecutive games with a TD throw ended at 54.
That’s still pretty impressive, but the breaking of the streak couldn’t have come at a worse time.
Besides the interceptions, Brees made some other costly errors as well. With time ticking down in the first half, the star QB threw a check-down pass and was unable to get his team get to the line in time to spike it.
That’s a very rare example of the former MVP failing to manage the clock effectively.
What makes it even worse for the Saints is that the Falcons were out of sync offensively. Atlanta was surprisingly struggling on offense, finishing with just 289 yards from scrimmage.
This game was right there for Brees and the Saints to take.
Brees threw four interceptions in the second half, two to defensive linemen and the Saints didn’t get back on the board for the remainder of the game.
One of those interceptions was luckily negated by an offsides penalty called on Falcons defensive end John Abraham, leaving Brees with just three for the half.
The disappointing Saints loss was uncharacteristic of Brees but very much a symbol for the team’s season.
After starting out 0-4, New Orleans bounced back by winning five of six games, including a Week 10 upset of the Falcons at the Superdome.
Brees and his team were rolling until going down 17-0 in Atlanta on Thursday night.
The Saints stormed back, though, to close the gap to 17-13 in the third quarter. That’s when the meltdown began.
Brees was driving the bus as the wheels came off. It wasn't just a disappointing end to their comeback bid in this game but for their comeback season as well.
Although not mathematically eliminated from playoff contention, Brees and the Saints will need to dig deep in order to come back again.
That and they'll need some help from the other teams vying for the NFC's Wild Card playoff berths.