Even when they lost their season opener, Brees and the offense put up 40 points. The defense just couldn't slow down Tampa Bay's offense.
Even a week later, when the offense did struggle against Cleveland, it managed to squeeze out 21 points and escape with a three-point victory.
Then Brees and the offense were off and running as the team won nine more in a row and increased their scoring average to more than 37 points.
But on Thursday night in AT&T Stadium, the Saints' offense could never figure out the Dallas defense, gaining just 176 yards in a 13-10 loss.
"We couldn't get going and couldn't get a rhythm going," center Max Unger said Friday. "Our defense played exceptionally and the offense just was not able to produce.
"(The Cowboys) had a good rush plan, a combination of really good rushers. We just have to be better in protection, and that really just boils it down. They had a good blitz package, and they were able to get pressure on Drew."
The Cowboys sacked Brees just twice, but he had been sacked just 10 times total in the previous 11 games, once in the previous five, and they pressured Brees consistently. Brees threw just his third interception of the season, but second in as many games.
"We just came out and didn't play with the tempo and rhythm we're used to," Brees said.
The Saints began the game with three consecutive three and outs and finished with 65 yards rushing.
"We weren't really good on the early downs," coach Sean Payton said. "We didn't have that balance that we've had in prior games. We struggled running the ball with any consistency."
The 10 points were a season-low for a team that had scored at least 30 points in each of its previous five games.
"We were in a really good rhythm and we just, for whatever reason, fell out of that, and it's up to us to kind of look back and see what we had done well in the previous wins and kind of recover that momentum if you will," Unger said. "But that was a tough loss."
Unger said Payton's message to the team was to "just examine everything, get back to what we're doing and kind of reload for the start of the fourth quarter of the season."
After playing on consecutive Thursdays, as Dallas also did, New Orleans has extra time to regroup and prepare for a game at Tampa Bay on Dec. 9.
--DT David Onyemata had the most productive game of his three-year career in leading a fine defensive effort against the Cowboys. He had three sacks after getting just two sacks total in his previous 43 games.
--QB Drew Brees operated with limitations he hasn't been used to, and that limited his productivity. The poor running game and shaky pass protection contributed to Brees having season-lows in yards per attempt (4.5) and passer rating (71.6).
--WR Michael Thomas had his third consecutive relatively quiet game, finishing with five catches for 40 yards. He has had five or fewer catches in three consecutive games after averaging eight catches per game through the first 10 games. He was kept out of the end zone for a second consecutive game.
--RB Mark Ingram II had season-lows in both rushes (seven) and rushing yards (27).
--WR Brandon Marshall was inactive for the third consecutive game since being signed as a free agent.