Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 11/17/13
Crazy things always seem to happen in the New Orleans Saints' recent games vs. the San Francisco 49ers, whether it was two interceptions returned for touchdowns in a loss last season, or New Orleans turning the ball over five times in a 2011 playoff loss. It's safe to say that trend didn't stop Sunday. With the way the Saints have been playing at home this season, they probably didn't expect to turn the ball over three times. Against a top-five defense in the 49ers, it's usually not a mistake a team could afford. But then again, with the way the Saints (8-2) have been playing at home, it didn't matter. With two seconds left, Garrett Hartley booted a 31-yard field goal to beat San Francisco, 23-20, and getting a bit of redemption for the past two losses agains the Niners. Thanks to a stout defense, the Saints were able to hold the 49ers (6-4) to 196 total yards, keeping running back Frank Gore in check for 48 yards and forcing a critical stop on third-and-19 at the two-minute warning when the score was tied at 20. Kaepernick ran out of bounds for 16 yards, forcing a punt. The 49ers were then flagged 15 yards for fair-catch interference on Darren Sproles, giving the Saints the ball on their 40-yard line with 1:41 left. Brees completed passes of 9 and 20 yards to Jimmy Graham and Marques Colston, and Hartley lined up to kick the game winner as time expired. Several Saints players said last week that they expected a physical game against the 49ers. They weren't kidding. The Saints lost Jabari Greer to a knee injury late in the first quarter. Greer landed awkwardly on a pass breakup and was carted off the field in a cast. Niners cornerback Tarell Brown was carted off with a rib injury in the second quarter, and guard guard Mike Iupati took a helmet to his knee, ending his game in the third quarter.
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