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Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott changes direction against New Orleans Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore during the first half of Thursday's game at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

ARLINGTON, Texas — The music that blared in the New Orleans Saints' locker room after the past 10 games went silent Thursday night.

There was no dancing in the locker room on this night. 

The winning streak was over.

The NFL's hottest team, which looked downright invincible the past few weeks, suddenly came crashing back to reality at AT&T Stadium.

A usually high-octane offense was kept in check by a stingy Dallas Cowboys defense, and the Saints crumbled in a 13-10 defeat, snapping their 10-game winning streak.    

It was the Saints' first loss since a Sept. 9 season-opening 48-40 stunner against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

"We didn't play to our standard today," said running back Mark Ingram. "We'll be back. ... We were on a good run. We just have to go back to the drawing board."

The Saints (10-2), had steamrolled their previous five opponents — the Vikings, Rams, Bengals, Eagles and Falcons — by an average of 22.4 points, but they couldn't get going in this one. They didn't come close to reaching their NFL-best 37.2-point average.

Drew Brees, who was named the NFC's Offensive Player of the Month earlier Thursday, never got on track in his return to his home state. He completed 18 of 28 passes for 127 yards and had a pass intercepted by Jourdan Lewis with 2:08 left that sealed the Saints' fate.

"I was trying to throw it away, throw at his feet and I just kept it up too high," Brees said about his final pass.

The interception came just moments after Cam Jordan forced a fumble with 2:35 left to give the Saints one last chance, trailing by three points.

It was one of the most dismal offensive showings in the Brees-Sean Payton era.

The Cowboys (7-5) had a lot to do with that, making it difficult from the start. The Saints uncharacteristically went three-and-out on their first two possessions.

"They are a really good pass-rush team," Brees said. "We didn't really find a rhythm pretty much the whole game."

Dallas led 13-0 at halftime on their way to winning their fourth game in a row.

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The Saints didn't score their first touchdown until 1:08 left in the third quarter when Brees threw a perfect strike to Keith Kirkwood, cutting the deficit to 13-10.

But it was as close as the Saints got, despite the defense holding the Cowboys scoreless in the second half.  

"Tip your hat to Dallas," Payton said. "I thought they did a good job, They played a heckuva game, deserved to win the game. We struggled really throughout the night having any consistency offensively. I thought we made enough plays defensively. I kind of felt like it would be a lower-scoring game coming in. We just didn't do enough things."

The Saints made the Cowboys settle for a pair of field goals in the first half.

The deficit was 10-0 in the first quarter after Dallas scored on two of its first three possessions.

The Saints had a chance to trim the lead, but Alvin Kamara was stuffed on fourth-and-goal from the 2. Dallas answered by driving and kicking a field goal late in the second quarter.

The Saints managed just 59 yards in the first half, the team's fewest since the 2001 season. They also had just three first downs through the first two quarters, their fewest since 2004. For the game, they finished with just 176 yards of offense, their lowest since 2002.

"Tonight was just one of those nights," Kamara said. "We didn't do enough. They did more than us. They came out with the win."

The Saints lost on the road for the first time this season.  Their next game is Dec. 9 at Tampa Bay, a chance to avenge their season-opening loss and get back on track.

"We won 10 in a row, felt like we were rolling," Brees said. "Now it's time to get that mojo back."


Follow Rod Walker on Twitter, @rwalkeradvocate.