"I think we had opportunities today," Falcons wide receiver Roddy White said after the game, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. It's not like they came out here and just. ... I feel like we kind of gave it away. We just gave it to them. It wasn't nothing they did. It was want we did in not cashing in on opportunities."
Trailing by four in the game's final minutes, the Falcons marched 79 yards to the Saints' 1, but were unable to crack the end zone from point-blank range on three consecutive plays. On fourth-and-goal from the 2, Ryan's end-zone throw to Roddy White was knocked away by cornerback Jabari Greer.
Ryan and Drew Brees were on the marquee, but this game became a showcase for two of the NFL's greatest tight ends. Jimmy Graham (nine catches, 146 yards, two touchdowns) was a monster, finding wide-open spaces in the Falcons secondary all afternoon. Tony Gonzalez -- the Mariano Rivera of the tight end position -- was even better, finishing with 11 receptions for 122 yards and two scores.
Neither defense particularly was impressive, but everyone knew this would be a shootout. The Saints were a little bit better, as they almost always seem to be against the Falcons. New Orleans has won 11 of 13 meetings between the teams since 2006.
"We play them against in three weeks and we'll be ready," White said. "It will be at the Dome and hopefully we'll beat them that time."
Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @danhanzus.