Cam Newton shook off a fourth-quarter leg injury to amass 248 passing yards with an interception and Mike Tolbert added three short touchdowns for the Panthers (7-9), who finished the year on a four-game winning streak.
The late-season surge could possibly save Coach Ron Rivera's job after the team started the 2012 campaign with six losses in seven games.
Drew Brees threw for 396 yards with four scores and one interception for New Orleans (7-9), which finished the season under .500 for the first time since 2007 after an 0-4 start.
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