It was over when ...
Saints CB Tracy Porter stepped in front of Reggie Wayne, intercepted Peyton Manning's pass and returned it 74 yards for a touchdown to give New Orleans a 31-17 lead with 3:12 remaining in the game. The Colts were unable to rally in the final minutes, giving the Saints their first Super Bowl championship.
After a slow first quarter in which the Colts appeared ready to run away with the game, the Saints altered the course of Super Bowl XLIV by seizing control of the second quarter. They ran 26 offensive plays to six for the Colts, then opened the second half with a successful onside kick. Six plays later, Pierre Thomas scored on a 16-yard catch-and-run to give the Saints their first lead, 13-10.
The Saints, who lost their final three regular-season games, are the first team to take a three-game losing streak into the playoffs and win the Super Bowl. ... With the loss by the Colts and Manning, the last five regular-season MVPs to reach the Super Bowl have lost the game. ... The Saints' Garrett Hartley became the first kicker in Super Bowl history with three field goals made from 40-plus yards (46, 44 and 47). ... Thomas, who had 85 total yards, is the third running back in NFL history to have a receiving touchdown in both a conference title game and the Super Bowl. ... Colts K Matt Stover, who was 1-for-2 on field goal attempts, became the oldest player in a Super Bowl at 42 years, 11 days. ... Indianapolis' 96-yard touchdown drive in the first quarter tied the 1985 Bears (Super Bowl XX) for the longest in Super Bowl history.