published Monday, December 26th, 2011

Saints top Falcons 45-16

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) heads for a touchdown on a pass reception as New Orleans Saints outside linebacker Martez Wilson (95) and another Saint defend during the first quarter of an NFL football game in New Orleans, Monday, Dec. 26, 2011. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)
Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) heads for a touchdown on a pass reception as New Orleans Saints outside linebacker Martez Wilson (95) and another Saint defend during the first quarter of an NFL football game in New Orleans, Monday, Dec. 26, 2011. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)
Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.
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NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Drew Brees set the NFL record for yards passing in a season, breaking a mark that Dan Marino had held since 1984, and the New Orleans Saints clinched the NFC South title with a 45-16 victory over the Atlanta Falcons on Monday night.

Brees threw for 307 yards and four touchdown passes, the last a 9-yard strike to Darren Sproles that set the record with 2:51 to go.

It was Brees' final pass of the game and it gave him 5,087 yards passing — with one game still to play. As Sproles spiked the ball, Brees put his arm over his head and started walking toward midfield while the Superdome crowd went wild and his teammates chased him down.

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