FINALLY: New Orleans Saints win Super Bowl XLIV

Michael Tortorich
New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton celebrates with the Vince Lombardi Trophy after his team won Super Bowl XLIV Sunday night.

The first time was a charm for the New Orleans Saints.

The 43-year-old franchise made its first appearance in the Super Bowl Sunday, and claimed a 31-17 win over the Indianapolis Colts.

Saints quarterback Drew Brees was chosen the game's MVP. He tied a Super Bowl record with 32 completions.

Indianapolis threatened to tie the game late in the fourth quarter as quarterback Peyton Manning, a New Orleans native, led his Colts down the field.

Second-year cornerback Tracy Porter, a Port Allen native, stepped in front of a Manning pass for an interception, which he returned 74 yards for a touchdown.

The Saints overcame a 10-0 early deficit to win.

Kicker Garrett Hartley brought the Saints back with two long-distance field goals, including a 46-yard kick that cut the Colts' lead to 10-6 at halftime. Hartley became the first player in Super Bowl history to make three field goals of more than 40 yards in the same game.

The Colts took an early lead after Matt Stover hit a 38-yard field goal and Manning connected with Pierre Garcon on a 19-yard touchdown pass.

After a pair of Hartley field goals, Brees threw a 16-yard touchdown to running back Pierre Thomas, giving the Saints a 13-10 lead.

Former LSU running back Joseph Addai put the Colts back int the lead when he ran for a 4-yard touchdown.

Hartley kicked a 47-yard field goal to cut the Colts lead to 17-16.

Brees followed with another scoring pass, hitting tight end Jeremy Shockey on a 2-yard touchdown. A two-point pass from Brees to wide receiver Lance Moore gave the Saints a 24-17 lead. Moore's catch was first ruled incomplete, but a replay review reversed the call.

Wide receiver Marques Colston finished with seven catches for 83 yards. Wide receiver Devery Henderson, a former LSU standout, had seven receptions for 63 yards.