NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The New Orleans Saints extended their winning streak to eight games with an unlikely comeback, erasing a 15-point deficit inside the final six minutes of regulation and kicking a short field goal in overtime to defeat the Washington Redskins 34-31 on Sunday.
Mark Ingram capped a 134-yard rushing performance with gains of 20 and 31 yards on back-to-back carries in overtime to set up Wil Lutz’s winning 28-yard kick.
Drew Brees passed for 385 yards and two touchdowns, going 11 of 11 for 164 yards and his only two touchdowns on New Orleans’ final two possessions of regulation. His first TD went to tight end Josh Hill with 2:53 to go and the last to Alvin Kamara with 1:05 left.
The Saints (8-2) set up their final drive by stopping Samaje Perine on third-and-1 at the two-minute warning when a first down would have allowed Washington (4-6) to run out the clock.
After Kamara had corralled a bobble while running between two converging defenders to score from 18 yards out, he took a pitch on a misdirection play to the left side and easily reached the end zone for a 2-point conversion as the Superdome crowd — at least those who hadn’t left early — went wild.
Washington managed to get into winning field-goal range in the final minute of regulation, only to be pushed back by a fluky grounding penalty that appeared to result from Kirk Cousins’ miscommunication with a receiver, followed by a sack as time expired.
The Redskins also received the ball first in overtime, but the Saints’ hobbled defense, which gave up more yards than in any game during its winning streak, rallied to force a quick punt and Ingram did the rest.
Cousins passed for 322 yards and three touchdowns.
Aggressively looking down field against a hobbled Saints secondary, Cousins completed 22 of 32 passes with no interceptions. His touchdowns went for 40 yards to Ryan Grant, 16 to Chris Thompson and 7 to Jeremy Sprinkle. Grant’s TD, which made it 24-13 in the third quarter, capped a drive extended by a successful fake punt on fourth-and-1 from the Redskins 15-yard line.
Perine carried 23 times for 117 yards, including his 1-yard TD.
New Orleans’ defense entered the game without veteran safety Kenny Vaccaro and then lost top cornerback Marshon Lattimore at the end of Washington’s first possession when he twisted his left ankle while diving to break up a pass in the end zone. The Saints also entered the game without leading tackler and starting middle linebacker A.J. Klein.
The Redskins gained 456 yards — their second most this season — against a Saints defense that had not allowed more 347 yards in any game during New Orleans’ winning streak.