SAN DIEGO, CA (WVUE) - The Saints go on their bye week starting Monday, but for a majority of the contest, Sunday, it seemed like Saints defense took vacation a little early. The Chargers jumped out to a 24-14 at the half, behind Philip Rivers 14-of-17 passing for 199 yards, including two touchdown passes.
The Saints came out firing on their first drive of the game with a nice mix of the rush and the pass game. Five runs mixed with six passes resulted in a Mark Ingram 1-yard touchdown run to make it 7-0 in the Saints favor.
With the game knotted at seven, Drew Brees connected with John Kuhn for a 4-yard connection to give the Black and Gold the lead back at 14-7. Brees went 13-of-17 passing for 134 yards, including one touchdown in the first half. The seven-point advantage didn't last long for the Who-Dats.
Philip Rivers, Brees' successor in San Diego, found Dontrelle Inman in blown coverage for a 57-yard touchdown. Saints rookie Vonn Bell failed on his assignment, and Inman made him pay with the score.
Melvin Gordon extended the Chargers lead to 24-14 with a 1-yard touchdown run right before half.
The Saints had the lone score of the 3rd quarter following a 1-yard run by Kuhn. That made the score 24-21 San Diego entering the 4th quarter.
A Melvin Gordon 1-yard run extended the Charger lead to 31-21 early in the 4th quarter.
After Brees threw his second interception of the afternoon, San Diego kicker Josh Lambo connected on a 47-yard field goal as the Chargers extended their lead to 34-21 in the fourth quarter.
After San Diego regained possession following a Thomas Morstead punt, Gordon fumbled and the Saints recovered deep in Charger territory. Four plays later, Brees found Michael Thomas from five yards out pulling New Orleans within six at 34-28.
On the following drive, San Diego wide receiver Travis Benjamin fumbled the ball, which was recovered by New Orleans. A 1-yard Kuhn run, his third score of the day, and an extra point by rookie kicker Wil Lutz put the Saints ahead 35-34.
The Saints defense stopped the Chargers on the final drive, preserving the 35-34 win.