Quarterback Drew Brees 'fine' after Saints' win over Cowboys, coach Sean Payton says _lowres



Drew Brees is no worse for the wear the day after making his first start since suffering a bruised rotator cuff against Tampa Bay.

Brees, who completed 33-of-41 passes for 359 yards, two touchdowns, no interceptions and the game-winning 80-yard strike to C.J. Spiller, felt good on Monday morning, according to his head coach.

“I think aside from your normal soreness after a game, I think (Brees is) fine,” Saints head coach Sean Payton said.

Brees largely stuck to the short passing game against the Cowboys, but the health of his throwing shoulder had little to do with the dink-and-dunk execution of the game plan.

The Saints’ franchise quarterback was forced to unload the ball early to avoid a relentless Dallas rush.

“The first half, a lot of it was the pressure,” Payton said. “We struggled blocking them, and as a result, there were some throwaways, some balls that didn’t get down the field.”

New Orleans initially planned to stretch the field more, a game plan that came in handy on a 30-yard completion to Brandon Coleman near the end of regulation and the game-winning touchdown pass to Spiller.

“We had a handful of deeper spears, pylons, more aggressive throws versus some of their man-to-man, but we struggled blocking them,” Payton said.

Brees, for his part, said the shoulder held up well.

“I felt good,” Brees said. “Good enough to get the job done.”