ATLANTA » Matt Ryan insists the Atlanta Falcons weren’t thinking about the defending Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints as they crushed the Arizona Cardinals.
It sure didn’t take long for talk to shift to the Saints after the game.
The Falcons gained momentum for this week’s NFC South game at New Orleans by overwhelming the Cardinals 41-7. The Falcons, led by backup running back Jason Snelling’s 129 yards rushing, 57 yards receiving and three touchdowns, took a 33-11 advantage in first downs in the dominant win.
Atlanta held the ball almost twice as long as Arizona, stopped each of the Cardinals’ eight third-down plays and intercepted three passes.
It was just the well-rounded performance the Falcons needed after a tough opening loss at Pittsburgh.
"We’re going to be a more confident football team going into next week against New Orleans," said receiver Roddy White, who had seven catches for 78 yards and a touchdown.
Bring on the Saints.
"It’s got to give us confidence, but at the same time we’re going against the world champions, so we know our plates are full," said tight end Tony Gonzalez.
"We know we’ve got to duplicate what we did this week and maybe even keep rising up. We’ve got to get better."
The Falcons controlled the game against the Cardinals even after losing running backs Michael Turner and Jerious Norwood to injuries.
The Falcons had 221 yards rushing, including 64 yards in the final quarter. Atlanta limited Arizona to 29 total yards in the final 15 minutes.
Saints 25, 49ers 22
NO–Team safety, 13:28.
NO–Bush 6 pass from Brees (Hartley kick), 9:33.
SF–Gore 12 pass from A.Smith (Nedney kick), 9:52.
SF–Dixon 2 run (Nedney kick), 6:51.
NO–D.Thomas 3 pass from Brees (Hartley kick), 1:43.
NO–FG Hartley 46, 13:31.
NO–FG Hartley 19, 2:12.
SF–Gore 7 run (V.Davis pass from A.Smith), 1:19.
NO–FG Hartley 37, :00.
|Total Net Yards||287||417|
|Time of Possession||32:40||27:20|
RUSHING–New Orleans, P.Thomas 18-46, Bush 5-4, H.Evans 1-0. San Francisco, Gore 20-112, A.Smith 4-28, Dixon 1-2, Westbrook 1-0.
PASSING–New Orleans, Brees 28-38-0-254. San Francisco, A.Smith 23-32-2-275.
RECEIVING–New Orleans, P.Thomas 8-57, Colston 5-67, Bush 4-30, Shockey 3-37, Henderson 3-28, D.Thomas 3-10, H.Evans 1-18, Brees 1-7. San Francisco, Gore 7-56, Morgan 6-70, V.Davis 4-78, Walker 2-26, Crabtree 1-32, Byham 1-6, Norris 1-5, Zeigler 1-2.
Chicago 27, Dallas 20
Atlanta 41, Arizona 7
Green Bay 34, Buffalo 7
Philadelphia 35, Detroit 32
Pittsburgh 19, Tennessee 11
Cincinnati 15, Baltimore 10
Kansas City 16, Cleveland 14
Tampa Bay 20, Carolina 7
Miami 14, Minnesota 10
Denver 31, Seattle 14
Oakland 16, St. Louis 14
Houston 30, Washington 27, OT
San Diego 38, Jacksonville 13
N.Y. Jets 28, New England 14
Indianapolis 38, N.Y. Giants 14
New Orleans 25, San Francisco 22
Dallas at Houston, 7 a.m.
Buffalo at New England, 7 a.m.
Cleveland at Baltimore, 7 a.m..
Atlanta at New Orleans, 7 a.m.
Tennessee at N.Y. Giants, 7 a.m.
Cincinnati at Carolina, 7 a.m.
San Francisco at Kansas City, 7 a.m.
Pittsburgh at Tampa Bay, 7 a.m.
Detroit at Minnesota, 7 a.m.
Washington at St. Louis, 10:05 a.m.
Philadelphia at Jacksonville, 10:05 a.m.
San Diego at Seattle, 10:15 a.m.
Oakland at Arizona, 10:15 a.m.
Indianapolis at Denver, 10:15 a.m.
N.Y. Jets at Miami, 2:20 p.m.
Green Bay at Chicago, 2:30 p.m.