The New Orleans Saints have taken a 20-10 lead into the halfway stage of their opening match of the new NFL season against NFC South rivals the Atlanta Falcons.
The Falcons began the campaign looking to start afresh following a hugely disappointing 2013 season that saw them finish with a 4-12 record, but they will need a second-half turnaround at the Georgia Dome to avoid an opening-week defeat.
The Saints opened the scoring in the first quarter when Shayne Graham converted a field goal from 31 yards, and he added another from 50 yards later in the quarter to double his side's advantage.
The first touchdown of the match came in the second quarter as the visitors extended their lead to 13 points courtesy of a two-yard run from Khiry Robinson, who found his way over the line through a mass of bodies.
However, the Saints were not to be denied a comfortable lead at half time and crossed into the endzone again in the closing stages of the quarter, this time first-round Draft pick Brandin Cooks latching on to a three-yard Drew Brees pass.
Matt Bryant added a field goal for the Falcons as time expired, leaving them with a 10-point deficit to overhaul in the second half.