2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Ryan, Turner lead Falcons to 17-7 lead over Saints

By CHARLES ODUM - AP Sports Writer
    2012-11-29 21:08

ATLANTA (AP) - Matt Ryan threw a 17-yard touchdown pass to Tony Gonzalez, Michael Turner had a 3-yard scoring run and the Atlanta Falcons, motivated by four straight losses in their NFC South rivalry with New Orleans, took a 17-7 halftime lead over the Saints on Thursday night.

Drew Brees has been sharp against the Falcons, averaging 302.8 yards passing as the Saints won 11 of the last 13 in the series, including a 31-27 win in New Orleans on Nov. 11.

Brees threw two interceptions before finally leading a touchdown drive late in the second quarter.

On third and 9 from the Saints 21, Brees completed a 32-yard pass over the middle to Lance Moore. Falcons defensive end Kroy Biermann drew an offside penalty on a third-down play from the Atlanta 26 to keep the drive alive.

Officials initially ruled Pierre Thomas scored on a 10-yard run, but a video review showed his knee was down before he crossed the goal line. Mark Ingram scored from the 1.

Brees led the Saints on another drive but ran out of time. The half ended following Brees' fourth straight pass to running back Darren Sproles, this one inside the Falcons 5. With the Saints out of timeouts, Brees couldn't get his team back to the line before time ran out.

The Falcons made a strong statement on their first possession. Atlanta gained 71 yards on five straight running plays after opening the drive with a 9-yard pass from Ryan to Gonzalez. Turner started the spree with a 35-yard run. Jacquizz Rodgers had back-to-back 14-yard gains before Turner stormed in from the 3.

With his touchdown, Turner snapped a tie with former Falcons receiver Terance Mathis to set the franchise career record with 58 total touchdowns. Turner also has the team record with 57 rushing touchdowns. He caught his first career touchdown pass in Week 4 against Carolina.

Falcons safety Thomas DeCoud intercepted a pass from Brees for Marques Colston in the end zone to end the Saints' first possession.

In the second quarter, Falcons linebacker Sean Weatherspoon intercepted a pass off running back Chris Ivory's hands, setting up Matt Bryant's 45-yard field goal. The pass from Brees was behind Ivory.

Atlanta cornerback Asante Samuel left the game after aggravating his right shoulder injury. Samuel had been listed as questionable with the injury, and he didn't make it through the Saints' opening drive.

Brees completed a 38-yard pass to Joseph Morgan on a third-down play. Samuel, who was covering Morgan, walked off the field with his right arm kept close to his chest.

The Falcons listed Samuel's status as questionable. He stood on the sideline without his helmet the remainder of the half. Robert McClain and Chris Owens took over for Samuel at cornerback.

Atlanta receiver Harry Douglas returned after leaving the game with an ankle injury in the first quarter.

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Morgan BurnettJul 31 09:42a

Green Bay Packers FS Morgan Burnett (ankle) and SS Tanner Miller (undisclosed) are not practicing Thursday, July 31.

Nate GarnerJul 31 08:53a

Miami Dolphins C Nate Garner is working with the first-team offense again Thursday, July 31, over C Shelley Smith.

Allen RobinsonJul 30 10:13p

Updating a previous report, Jacksonville Jaguars WR Allen Robinson (and fellow rookie WR Marqise Lee) have seen plenty of opportunity at training camp with WR Cecil Shorts (hamstring) and [ More ]

Andre JohnsonJul 30 12:33p

Houston Texans WR Andre Johnson (hamstring) did not participate in practice Wednesday, July 30. Head coach Bill O'Brien has said the team is being cautious with Johnson.

Joe LooneyJul 30 12:13p

San Francisco 49ers OG Joe Looney has been working with the first-team offense at guard in place of OG Alex Boone and has looked good during practices.

Allen RobinsonJul 30 11:53a

Jacksonville Jaguars WRs Marqise Lee and Allen Robinson have looked comfortable and consistent in the early part of training camp, according to John Oehser.

Nate GarnerJul 30 11:03a

Miami Dolphins C Shelley Smith and C Nate Garner are splitting reps with the first-team offense at center Wednesday, July 30.

Clay HarborJul 30 10:53a

Updating previous reports, Jacksonville Jaguars TE Clay Harbor (calf) will be out for a month due to the calf injury he suffered earlier in the week.

Odell Beckham Jr.Jul 30 10:43a

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Marquis FlowersJul 30 10:33a

Cincinnati Bengals DT Geno Atkins (knee) and LB Marquis Flowers (hamstring) were activated from the Physically Unable to Perform list.

David WilsonJul 30 10:13a

New York Giants RB David Wilson (neck) will sit out of practice the rest of the week and won't play in the first preseason game. He underwent tests Tuesday, [ More ]

Lardarius WebbJul 30 08:33a

Baltimore Ravens CB Lardarius Webb (back) had recent examinations reveal no structural damage to his back. It's believed to be a muscular problem that will require rest and rehabilitation. [ More ]

Chris RaineyJul 30 02:13a

LB Darrin Kitchens (Bills), OT Chris Faulk (Browns), PK Jake Rogers (Browns), OT Aslam Sterling (Broncos), RB Chris Rainey (Colts), WR Gerald Ford (Dolphins), OT DeMarcus Love (Giants) and [ More ]

Ricky SappJul 30 02:03a

The Houston Texans released LB Ricky Sapp (undisclosed) from their Non-Football Injury list Tuesday, July 29. Sapp is free to sign with any team.

Demarcus LawrenceJul 30 01:33a

Dallas Cowboys DE Demarcus Lawrence (foot) suffered a broken foot Tuesday, July 29, and he will need eight to 10 weeks recovery time, according to a source.

Brandon PettigrewJul 30 12:53a

Detroit Lions TE Brandon Pettigrew and the other tight ends have split time between working on the offensive line and working with the pass-catching receivers and running backs catching [ More ]

Corey HilliardJul 30 12:53a

Detroit Lions OTs Corey Hilliard and LaAdrian Waddle appear to be getting an equal shot at the starting right tackle job. Hilliard worked with the first-team offense Monday, July [ More ]

Kevin OgletreeJul 30 12:53a

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Jason HatcherJul 30 12:13a

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Patrick PetersonJul 30 12:03a

Arizona Cardinals CB Patrick Peterson announced via Twitter Tuesday, July 29, that he has signed a five-year contract extension worth $70 million with $48 million guaranteed.

Robert MeachemJul 29 11:53p

New Orleans Saints WR Robert Meachem (back) and OT Tavon Rooks (back) returned to practice Tuesday, July 29.

Greg ScruggsJul 29 11:43p

Seattle Seahawks DT Jordan Hill, SS Jeron Johnson, DE Greg Scruggs and LB Mike Morgan are four players that defensive coordinator Dan Quinn mentioned when asked what players have [ More ]

Jonathan DwyerJul 29 11:33p

Arizona Cardinals RB Stepfan Taylor worked with the first-team offense in place of RB Andre Ellington (neck) Tuesday, July 29. Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.com believes the move means that [ More ]

Jake MatthewsJul 29 11:23p

Atlanta Falcons OT Jake Matthews has impressed QB Matt Ryan during training camp. 'I think Jake, his size and he's very strong, very athletic,' Ryan said Tuesday, July [ More ]

Dale MossJul 29 11:03p

The Chicago Bears signed free-agent WR Dale Moss (Panthers) to a one-year deal Tuesday, July 29. The financial terms were not disclosed.

Jerrel JerniganJul 29 10:43p

New York Giants CB Charles James could make the roster as a punt returner as a result of injuries to RB David Wilson (neck) and WR Odell Beckham Jr. [ More ]

Zac StacyJul 29 10:23p

St. Louis Ram RB Tre Mason saw received some snaps with the first-team Tuesday, July 29, with RB Zac Stacy receiving a majority of the work with the first-team.

Ray McDonaldJul 29 09:53p

San Francisco 49ers CB Chris Culliver (knee), CB Tramaine Brock (knee) and DE Ray McDonald (leg) did not practice Tuesday, July 29.

O'Brien SchofieldJul 29 09:33p

Seattle Seahawks LB Kevin Pierre-Louis (stomach) missed practice Tuesday, July 29, with a stomach injury, and LB O'Brien Schofield was given a scheduled day of rest.

Bryan BulagaJul 29 08:43p

Green Bay Packers OT Bryan Bulaga (knee) performed well in one-on-one pass-blocking drills Monday, July 28, stopping a rush attempt from LB Clay Matthews and two attempts from LB Julius Peppers.

Calvin JohnsonJul 29 08:23p

Detroit Lions WR Calvin Johnson is taking part in fewer reps in training camp this year than in years past and said he is trying to be smarter about [ More ]

Giorgio TavecchioJul 29 08:13p

Detroit Lions K Nate Freese and K Giorgio Tavecchio both missed field-goal attempts from nearly 50 yards during practice Tuesday, July 29, and the two remain in a competition for the starting kicking job.

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