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Super Saints dominate in lopsided victory over Bills

The Saints remain one of the NFL's hottest teams, extending their winning streak to seven games. Mark Ingram led the way with three of New Orleans' franchise-record six rushing touchdowns, resulting in a 47-10 dismantling of the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. Here's what we learned in Orchard Park:

  1. For all of the passing records Drew Brees has shattered in the cozy indoor confines of the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Sean Payton's Super Bowl formula has long been a strong running game complemented by a swarming, opportunistic defense that allows the Saints to succeed in the harsh elements outside of their dome-field advantage. Easily establishing a rhythm while taking advantage of Payton's brilliant play-calling, Brees is orchestrating an unstoppable, all-weather attack that features a stout offensive line, a dynamic backfield duo, a legitimate No. 1 receiver in Michael Thomas, an electric game-breaker in Ted Ginn and a physical big-play threat in Brandon Coleman. The Saints appear to be on an NFC collision course with the Eagles, their challenger as the most balanced team in the league.
  1. We won't see a more lopsided contest all season, as New Orleans marched through Buffalo like General Sherman to Savannah. Consistently reaching the second level of the defense behind a dominant blocking unit, well-rounded power back Mark Ingram and electric rookie Alvin Kamara became the first pair of Saints to clear the century mark in rushing yards since Reggie Bush and Deuce McAllister accomplished the feat in 2006. At one point in the second half, Payton called 24 consecutive run plays, imposing his will en route to a season-high 298 rushing yards. That mark fell just nine shy of the single-game franchise record. Since the ill-fitted Adrian Peterson was jettisoned last month, Ingram leads the NFL with seven touchdowns while Kamara has been everything that more ballyhooed division rival Christian McCaffrey was hyped to be as a versatile pass-catching threat and elusive, tackle-shedding runner. Together, Kamara and Ingram are on pace for 2,940 yards from scrimmage, nearly 500 more than the total recorded by Atlanta's talented duo of Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman in last year's Super Bowl campaign.
  1. In consecutive blowout losses to New York and New Orleans, the Bills have been exposed as well-coached overachievers with a shallow roster. Since trading defensive tackle Marcell Dareus to Jacksonville, Sean McDermott's defense has hemorrhaged 194 rushing yards to the Jets last week in addition to the historic output from the Saints on Sunday. Even in a down year for the AFC, Buffalo is far from a lock to slide into a wild-card slot.
  1. How to explain the Saints' suddenly stout defense? They are undefeated since Ken Crawley joined the starting lineup opposite hotshot rookieMarshon Lattimore, comprising one of the league's stingiest cornerback tandems. The criminally underrated Cameron Jordan is a Defensive Player of the Year candidate wreaking havoc up front, alongside former Cardinals edge rusher Alex Okafor, one of the best bargain signings of the offseason. It doesn't hurt that Dennis Allen's defense has faced a string of shaky quarterbacks and mediocre offenses since the beginning of October.
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