Originally written on The Saints Nation  |  Last updated 10/24/14

CHARLOTTE, NC - NOVEMBER 07: Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints against the Carolina Panthers during their game at Bank of America Stadium on November 7, 2010 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
There is no question the better team won this game on Sunday. The Saints' offense move the ball well and struck perfect balance. The offensive line played well, and while numerous mistakes were made, reflected in a very up and down game, the end result was 34 points scored in a win. What's not to like?   Drew Brees: A+ (2.76) To me this was his best game of the season. He finished 37 of 53 for 446 yards, 3 touchdowns and no interceptions. Those numbers are shocking, considering he completed 70% of his passes despite numerous drops. The footwork and accuracy was on full display, and the ball was out and in the perfect spot on literally almost every throw. He didn't take many shots downfield as clearly the Saints recognized a mismatch with their backs against the Cbwboys' backers and Brees exploited that for the duration of the game. Mark Ingram: B- (2.40) He was given numerous reps running the ball and the Saints really did commit to him on the ground. He finished with just 53 yards on 21 carries and a touchdown, but that wasn't indicative of how well he ran. He was blown up in the backfield a few times to hurt his stats, but he ran the ball well, particularly in short yardage situations. His touchdown run was a nice burst, he was tough to bring down running physically, and he also contributed a reception for 7 yards. Pierre Thomas: B- (2.95) He had just 16 yards on 7 carries are wasn't really a factor on the ground with his delay handoffs and draws. He was, however, a major factor in the passing game, with 7 receptions for 67 yards and a touchdown. He also had two mediocre kick returns, one of which he mishandled. He did show off his usual trademark toughness after the catch and is never easy to bring down. I find myself saying "man, PT is awesome", at least twice every game and I know you do too. Darren Sproles: A (2.78) He was a very positive influence in the running game with 48 yards on 9 carries, but he was deadly in the passing game with 104 yards on 7 receptions. He didn't break many tackles but he was elusive and did a good job beating people to the edge. He was a catalyst to the offense. He also had a kick return for 15 yards and two punt returns for 10 yards. Quite an offensive production. Marques Colston: B (2.60) Tough game to grade. Colston's ball security was poor. He had one horrible drop right in his hands over the middle wide open, and he fumbled twice. One he was fortunate as the ball fell harmlessly out of bounds, but the other could have been very costly in overtime. He was fortunate Graham recovered that ball. I have noticed Colston is not the most secure ball carrier after the catch, something he'll need to pay attention to. That said, you can't deny his impact on the game. 10 catches for 153 yards. He repeatedly hurt the Cowboys' secondary and broke some tackles at the second level too. His 60 yard reception was a thing of beauty. He now has 1,000 yards for the 6 time and 7 years, yet he's never been to the Pro Bowl. He needs 101 yards next week for a career high season in yards. Very physical, made tough catches, and moved the chains. Lance Moore: B (2.86) A somewhat quiet day for Moore, just 4 catches for 30 yards, but he made a nice grab for a touchdown. His end zone dance was once again ridiculous. Devery Henderson: D- (1.90) Brees never looks his way anymore because he's never open, and Henderson has reverted back to his early career hands lately. He dropped a wide receiver screen that is probably the easiest catch he'll ever have. Made zero impact. Miserable season for the veteran. Joe Morgan: C+ (2.30) Despite numerous plays in the game, he was only a decoy. Brees never looked his way, but he blocked OK and the Cowboys paid attention to him. That's valuable because it stretched the field, and allowed the Saints to exploit tons of underneath stuff. Jimmy Graham: B (2.33) He's even tougher to grade than Colston. First off, he added to his league lead in drops with at least two very clear ones. One drop was arguably the worst one he has had all season long where he was wide open and it hit him right in the chest. He did finish with 7 catches for 88 yards, which is a worthwhile contribution. Most importantly, he made the play of the game and his grade deserves a big boost for this one. It won't show up on the stat sheet but if you watched the game you know exactly what i'm talking about, and this took effort which we haven't always seen from him this year. On a reception, Graham dislocated his pinky. If you re-watch the tape, you'll see his pinky dangling out of place in overtime and it's a little rough on the stomach. He then ran to the sideline and you can see the training staff pop it back into place and Graham wincing considerably in obvious pain. 2 plays later, he was back in the game. Colston fumbles, he beats everyone to the ball and recovers it inside the 5. That sequence won the game for the Saints, and most importantly it showcased what a warrior Jimmy Graham is. Major kudos there. He also had 2 false start penalties, so he probably deserves worse than a B but the recovery saved the game. David Thomas: B (2.26) With Jed Collins absent he played a lot of fullback and blocked well. He also played tight end over Jimmy Graham a lot in this game unless it was an obvious passing down. He was decent overall but he was flagged for a holding penalty. He also contributed a 3 yard touchdown reception on a nice play fake that left him wide open. Jermon Bushrod: B- (2.53) He was flagged for a false start and he had a really hard time with DeMarcus Warealmost getting Brees killed once. Ware was banged up and in and out of the game, though, and when Ware wasn't there Bushrod had a much easier time. His run blocking was solid. A decent showing overall. But he forced Brees to step up into the pocket a little too often. Ben Grubbs: C+ (2.80) His pass protection wasn't as good as usual, and he got Brees hit once due to poor protection, though Brees was able to avoid the sack. He also didn't get the push on the interior we're used to seeing from him, but overall he played clean and didn't make any major mistakes. Brian de la Puente: B+ (2.47) A solid and impressive game from the Saints' undrafted center, who had great push on the interior and was physical in protection.  Jahri Evans: A (2.93) Dominated at right guard. On the ground he was frequently at the second level finishing plays and surging the play for a yard or two more. He gave Brees a clean pocket throughout and demolished any pass rusher that came his way. Very impressive performance. PT has a very narrow lead over big Jahri for best offensive GPA of the season. Zach Strief: B+ (2.21) Take away a holding call and he was precious in his performance as well. He's obviously feeling better because his lateral movement was clean and much improved, not getting beat off the edge. His size was extremely valuable and Cowboy defenders just couldn't get around him. Nice to have him back playing like that. Eric Olsen: A- (2.38) He too was flagged for holding once, but with Collins out Olsen was run through the gauntlet of positions. The Saints asked him to do everything. He even ran routes as a safety valve on a couple of plays, which was just hilarious. The lead blocks he threw as a fullback in short yardage situations were fantastic. He moved pretty well for a guard off the edge, and gave the Saints a much needed presence off the edge. His best game of the season, bar none.   My Offensive Player of the Game: Drew Brees  
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Memorabilia dealer at center of Todd Gurley scandal fired

Colt McCoy on learning he was starting ‘it’s about f—ing time’

Four Questions for Game 3 of the World Series

Percy Harvin not planning on changing

Ricky Williams: People are let down when I turn down weed

Joe Maddon opts out of contract with Rays

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Randall Cobb: Contract situation played role in slow start

Notre Dame WR faces discipline if he hooked up with porn star?

PGA president calls Ian Poulter ‘lil girl’ for Nick Faldo comments

Belichick declines to address Revis' reported tardiness

Texas mayor delays Halloween for Friday night football game

C-USA hired PR firm to help Marshall’s playoff chances

WATCH: American flag rips during Game 3 national anthem

WATCH: Tony Parker draws foul by simply yelling 'hey'

Video: Tom Izzo takes the stage with KISS on Midnight Madness

Eight NFL records that won’t be broken for a long time

Big trouble for Bruins: Chara out 4-6 weeks, possibly more

Blazers, Seahawks owner Paul Allen gives $100M to fight ebola

'FIFA 15' glitch turns goalie into headless giant with no arms

WATCH: HBO releases trailer of 'The Offseason: Kevin Durant'

Broncos corner snags INT, then takes pregnant wife to hospital

Gurley dressed up as a pirate for Halloween, yelled, 'Free me'

What the return of Luis Suarez means for Barcelona

Nick Saban pens touching letter after high school coach dies

Saints News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Trouble for Bruins: Chara out 4-6 weeks

Joe Maddon opts out of contract with Rays

NBA Replay Center debuts next week

World Series win = Giants dynasty?

Reliving the worst college football game of the last 10 years

NFL teams facing must-win scenarios in Week 8

What the return of Luis Suarez means for Barcelona

Programs with a lot on the line this week

Wilson denies rumored Harvin rift

Lakers: Steve Nash out for season

Is Mack Brown SMU's best option?

Are sports leagues finally getting serious about domestic violence?

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.