SAINTS 10 -- Emmitt Smith earned another NFL record Sunday with his 77th 100-yard rushing game -- and threw the first pass of his 15-year pro career. It went for a touchdown.
The NFL's career rushing leader had his best game since leaving Dallas two years ago, gaining 127 yards in 21 carries to help Arizona stun the New Orleans Saints, 34-10, in Phoenix. It gave Dennis Green his first victory as Cardinals coach.
Smith, six months past his 35th birthday, tied Walter Payton's record for most 100-yard rushing games in an NFL career. It was his first 100-yard game since Thanksgiving day 2002, when he did it for Dallas against Washington. He is the first NFL player to gain more than 100 yards past the age of 35 since Marcus Allen for Kansas City against Cleveland on Dec. 3, 1995.
Smith passed the 100 mark with a 29-yard touchdown burst up the middle, sealing the victory with 5 minutes 2 seconds to play.
But it was his wobbly 21-yard touchdown pass to fullback Obafemi Ayanbadejo late in the first half he probably will remember most. On second and eight from the Saints 21, Smith ran right, then pulled up and lobbed a pass to Ayanbadejo, who fell across the goal line for the score that put Arizona up 14-3 at the break against the mistake-prone Saints (2-2).