Patrick Mahomes threw three touchdown passes and the visiting Kansas City Chiefs won their ninth consecutive game by defeating the New Orleans Saints 32-29 on Sunday in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
Mahomes completed 26 of 47 for 254 yards as the Chiefs improved their NFL-best record to 13-1.
Drew Brees returned from a four-game absence due to rib and lung injuries to complete 15 of 34 passes for 234 yards with three touchdowns and an interception as the Saints (10-4) lost their second straight after a nine-game winning streak.
The Chiefs led at halftime, but Brees threw a 24-yard touchdown pass to Latavius Murray on the first possession of the third quarter to give the Saints their only lead at 15-14.
Mahomes answered on the ensuing possession with a 5-yard touchdown pass to Mecole Hardman that gave Kansas City a 21-15 lead at the end of the third quarter.
Le’Veon Bell’s 12-yard touchdown run and Mahomes’ two-point pass to Travis Kelce increased the Chiefs’ lead to 29-15 with 13:44 to go.
Mahomes fumbled on Kansas City’s next possession, and Kwon Alexander recovered for the Saints at the Chiefs 25. Three plays later, Brees tossed a 14-yard touchdown pass to Alvin Kamara to pull New Orleans within 29-22 with 9:43 left.
The Chiefs’ Harrison Butker kicked a 22-yard field goal before Brees threw a 17-yard touchdown pass to Lil’Jordan Humphrey to cut the Chiefs’ lead to 32-29 with 2:06 left. Kansas City then gained two first downs and ran out the clock.
Brees’ first three passes were incomplete and his fourth one was intercepted by L’Jarius Sneed, leading to Mahomes’ 5-yard touchdown pass to Tyreek Hill and a 7-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.
On the first play of the second quarter, Mahomes threw a 1-yard touchdown pass to Kelce for a 14-0 lead.
Brees connected with Emmanuel Sanders for a 51-yard gain to the Chiefs’ 3-yard line, setting up Taysom Hill’s 1-yard touchdown run that pulled New Orleans within 14-7.
Kansas City’s Demarcus Robinson fumbled on a punt return near his goal line and the ball rolled through the end zone for a safety, trimming the Chiefs’ lead to 14-9 at halftime.