Bradley Handwerger / WWLTV.com Sports Reporter
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METAIRIE, La. ― Pierre Thomas isn’t worried about chasing records, not in the final week of a season in which getting to 13-3 could be the difference between a bye and having to play on Wild Card weekend.
With the possibility, however remote, of attaining the No. 2 seed should the Saints beat Carolina and the 49ers lose to St. Louis, it’s all hands on deck this week, coach Sean Payton said earlier this week.
But regardless of that, Thomas said momentum is a big reason the Saints won’t worry about any records.
“No matter what records that’s in front of us we might be able to break and what, we have to go out there and play our game,” Thomas said. “We go out here thinking about records and not staying focused, we’re going to lose this game and that’s something we can’t have.”
Still, the offensive records the Saints could set on Sunday in their noon game against Carolina (6-9) are astounding.
- With 383 first downs, New Orleans is 16 away from Kansas City’s 2004 record;
- With 257 passing first downs, the Saints are three away from San Diego’s 1985 record;
- With 6,857 total yards, they’re 219 away from St. Louis’ 2000 record;
- With 4,938 yards passing, they’re 295 yards from St. Louis’ 2000 record (sacks count against net passing yards);
- With 441 completions, the Saints are 10 away from breaking their 2010 record shared with Indianapolis;
- With a team completion percentage of 70.7 percent, they’re .05 percent ahead of Cincinnati’s 1982 record;
- Quarterback Drew Brees is 11 completions away from breaking Peyton Manning’s 2010 record;
- Brees’ 70.7 percent completion rate is.08 percent ahead of his 2009 record;
- Brees already owns the NFL record for passing in a season with 5,087 yards and 190 ahead of New England’s Tom Brady;
- Brees has an NFL record with 12 300-yard passing games in a season;
- Brees set an NFL record with four consecutive games of 350-plus yards passing;
- And Mr. Everything Darren Sproles, with 2,528 yards, is 163 yards from breaking Derrick Mason’s 2000 record.
“There’s a lot of records out there we could potentially set, break,” Brees said. “I think our mindset above and beyond that is how do we put ourselves in the best position to play and win in the playoffs.”
And that’s a belief shared by nearly the entire Saints locker room.
“The last four or five weeks we’ve been getting better and better every week,” safety Malcolm Jenkins said. “We’ve been working hard. We just want to keep that ball rolling and continue.”