1. What we learned
Who dat? Not the Miami Dolphins, dat’s for sure. In a “Monday Night Football” showdown of two of the NFL’s final six unbeatens, the New Orleans Saints showed the world that the Dolphins while improved are not ready for prime time players. With patented surgical airstrikes from Drew Brees, a ball-hawking defense and underappreciated but typically faultless special teams, the Saints turned in their most impressive victory of the young season and continued their remarkable turnaround.
2. Trending now
Drew Brees. The patron Saint worked through his record book progressions while working over the Dolphins. He tied his own NFL record with his ninth straight 300-yard passing game, moved into fourth place in career completions, extended his streak of consecutive 200-yard passing games to 34 (in the first half) and had time to contemplate the impact of a federal government shutdown. It may have looked like overkill to pass with the Saints up big, but they still can’t run it well.
3. Final thoughts
This was the definition of a statement game for the Saints. Miami was a clear and present danger to New Orleans’ impressive start with earlier wins over the Colts and Falcons. The Saints made Miami wish it was back on South Beach. After two straight blowout victories over the Cardinals and Dolphins, New Orleans has earned a place in the discussion of the NFL’s top teams along with Seattle, Denver and New England. Said Patriots, and 3-1 Chicago, now await on the road.