It was over when ...
Jonathan Stewart set the tone early with a 67-yard touchdown run on Carolina's opening possession. He finished with 125 rushing yards, despite sitting out the fourth quarter.
New Orleans' top-ranked offense was completely ineffective with Brunell under center. The Saints gained just 213 total yards and were only 2-of-13 on third down.
No team has ever made the Super Bowl after ending the season with three consecutive losses. The Saints will try to become the first this year. ... New Orleans kick returner Courney Roby was injured late in the second quarter and did not return. ... Carolina's Stewart and DeAngelo Williams became the first teammates to rush for over 1,100 yards in the same season since the merger. ... Panthers WR Dwayne Jarrett had a career-high 68 receiving yards.