Falcons soar above the Saints

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Updated: November 30, 2012

It was sweet revenge for the Atlanta Falcons as they soared to 11-1 when they defeated the only team to have beaten them so far this season, New Orleans.

It was a real statement by the Falcons at the Georgia Dome,  picking off New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees a career-high five times and ending his remarkable consecutive games streak with a touchdown pass in their 23-13 victory.

Matt Ryan completed 18-of-33 passes for 165 yards with a touchdown for the Falcons (11-1), who avenged their lone defeat of the season and snapped a four-game losing streak to the Saints.

Atlanta can clinch the NFC South division title with a Tampa Bay loss or tie at Denver on Sunday. A loss or tie by Seattle at Chicago on Sunday will secure a playoff spot for the Falcons.

New Orleans (5-7), meanwhile, saw its playoff hopes become even slimmer with its second straight loss.

Brees, who had 341 passing yards, failed to throw a touchdown pass for the first time since Week 4 of the 2009 campaign, snapping a his NFL-record streak at 54 games.