|Date of game: 10/30/2014
Recap: Carolina vs. New Orleans
Charlotte, NC (SportsNetwork.com) - New Orleans followed up Sunday night's drubbing of Green Bay with another impressive showing.
Except this one came on the road.
And it put the Saints on top of the so-so NFC South.
Mark Ingram ran for 100 yards and a pair of touchdowns and New Orleans defeated the Carolina Panthers 28-10 on Thursday night.
The Saints broke a scoreless deadlock by scoring on three straight possessions in between the second and third quarters to build a 21-7 advantage and cruised the rest of the way en route to ending their seven-game, regular-season road losing streak.
Following a career-high 172 rush yards Sunday, Ingram topped the 100-yard mark again after tallying just one 100-yard rushing performance prior in his first 40 games.
"It feels good," Ingram said. "We just have to continue to prove it. We know that if we bring our A-game on the road and execute, limit the mistakes and turnovers, we can beat anybody."
Drew Brees was 24-of-34 for 297 yards with a touchdown and an interception and added a rushing score for the Saints (4-4), who have bounced back from a 1-3 start by winning three of their last four contests.
Jimmy Graham caught seven passes for 83 yards and a score, while Kenny Stills added five receptions for 72 yards in the triumph.
Junior Galette recorded two of New Orleans' four sacks and its defense held Cam Newton to just 151 yards passing with an interception on just 10-of-28 efficiency.
Newton carried the ball seven times for 43 yards and a touchdown for Carolina (3-5-1), which accumulated just 231 total yards.
The Panthers are 1-5-1 since a 2-0 start.
"We have to be professional about the situation and take responsibility and ownership and hold ourselves accountable," Newton said.
The first of the Saints' three straight scores came at the 2:38 mark of the second quarter.
Newton initially eluded some Saints pressure by moving to his right, but didn't see a converging Galette from behind as he strip-sacked him at the Carolina 4.
New Orleans linebacker Curtis Lofton recovered the loose ball and Ingram followed the pulling left guard Ben Grubbs off the right side for a 3-yard TD run two snaps later.
The Saints defense then forced a three-and-out and briskly traveled 85 yards in 10 plays to put another touchdown on the board right before the half.
Brees hit Stills for a 17-yard completion on a 3rd-and-10 and Carolina cornerback Antoine Cason committed a pass interference on Robert Meachem in the end zone on a 3rd-and-17 from the Carolina 33.
Brees then flipped a back-shoulder throw to Graham isolated in coverage in the back right corner of the end zone with three ticks to go in the half.
Carolina picked up 70 yards of offense on its initial march of the third, nearly matching its first half total of 89.
DeAngelo Williams took a screen pass for 30 yards on the opening play and Newton finished off the sequence with a 10-yard TD run. On the highlight-reel score, Newton spun to his left to escape from cornerback Patrick Robinson's blitz off the edge and ran away from Galette along the left sideline before diving inside the 5 and reaching the ball out inside the left pylon.
The Saints answered with an elongated 6:10, 14-play, 80-yard series.
Brees found Brandin Cooks for a 15-yard completion on an initial 3rd-and-9, hit Stills to pick up 12 on a 3rd-and-7 and snuck it in on fourth down to complete the drive late in the third.
Graham Gano nailed a 31-yard field goal early in the fourth to get Carolina within 21-10, but the Saints drained the ensuing 7:27 off the clock prior to Ingram darting through for the back-breaking 3-yard score with 5:30 left.
New Orleans turned the ball over on its first two touches, each while in Carolina territory.
Panthers defensive tackle Dwan Edwards hauled in a deflected pass while the Saints were driving inside the red zone on their first sequence, and Mario Addison recovered a Brees fumble following Charles Johnson's strip-sack on their second.
Carolina, though, couldn't capitalize despite driving into Saints territory on each of its first three series.
Saints cornerback Corey White picked off Newton to end the Panthers' third drive after Brenton Bersin dropped a pass over the middle early in the second.Game Notes
Ingram became the first Saints back to run for over 100 yards in consecutive
games since Deuce McAllister from Dec. 3-10 of the 2006 season ... New Orleans
began the season 0-4 away from home ... The Saints had 375 total yards ... New
Orleans was 7-of-13 on third down, while the Panthers finished 6-of-14.