NEW ORLEANS -- In a game in which quarterbacks Drew Brees and Eli Manning combined for an NFL-record 13 touchdown passes, kicker Kai Forbath kicked a 50-yard game-winning field goal as time expired to lift the New Orleans Saints to a 52-49 victory over the New York Giants in a video game shootout Sunday at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
The winning kick came just after the Saints' Brees (40-of-50 for 511 yards and seven touchdowns) tied the game at 49 with 36 seconds left on a 9-yard touchdown pass to running back C.J. Spiller. That score capped an 80-yard, 14-play drive, one of six Saints' scoring drives that covered at least 80 yards.
The Giants ran three plays with the ensuing kickoff but gained only five yards. With 20 seconds left, punter Brad Wing kicked 46 yards to Saints returner Marcus Murphy, who returned the ball 24 yards to the New York 37-yard line before fumbling the ball into Saints receiver Willie Snead's hands.
Wing was called for a facemask on the tackle, and that moved the ball to the Giants' 32 with five seconds left. Forbath then came in to kick the game-winning 50 yards.
Manning completed 40 of 50 passes for 350 yards and six touchdowns.
Leading 28-21, Brees continued his assault in the second half, connecting on two more touchdown passes, 21 yards to Cooks on a fade route and 20 yards to tight end Benjamin Watson. That gave the Saints a 42-28 lead late in the third quarter, but the Giants weren't done.
Manning had found receiver Odell Beckham for a 50-yard score to tie the game at 28 early in the second half and then hit wide receiver Dwayne Harris with a desperation fourth-down heave from 9 yards out to make it 42-35 with 12:15 left.
Manning got the equalizer with a gorgeous 20-yard strike to Harris, who made a fingertip grab over cornerback Damian Swann to tie the game 42-42 with 9:30 left.
New York then took the lead when cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie separated wide receiver Willie Snead from the ball after a completion, and cornerback Trumaine McBride grabbed the ball out of the air and raced 65 yards untouched for the go-ahead score.
Brees had a stunning first half against a sleep-walking Giants defense, completing 19 of 21 passes for 300 yards and four touchdowns. He finished the half with 17 consecutive completions while directing the Saints to four straight touchdown drives covering 80, 96, 80 and 60 yards, and New Orleans led 28-21 at intermission.
It could have been worse. On the Saints' first series, Brees barely overthrew wide receiver Brandin Cooks who was running free down the New York sidelines.
Brees threw two touchdown passes to Snead for 34 and 2 yards, and he got the other first-half scores on passes of 27 yards to Cooks on a flea flicker and 53 yards to Marques Colston, who was so wide open when he gathered in the pass at the Giants' 37 that there wasn't a Giant defender within 15 yards of him.
Manning kept the Giants within striking distance, completing 18 of 21 passes for 165 yards and three touchdowns in the first half. Two came on short slants to Odell Beckham Jr., for 2 and 1 yards, and a 2-yard toss to running back Shane Vereen on an 80-yard, 10-play drive at the end of the half, moving the Giants within 28-21.
NOTES: Saints RB Khiry Robinson suffered a gruesome injury to his lower right leg and had to be carted off the field in the first half. ... Saints QB Drew Brees tied his career-best with six touchdowns (2009 against Detroit). ... In the last three games against the Giants at the Superdome, the Saints have outscored New York 149-100.