BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Monday night's win by New Orleans over the Atlanta Falcons clinched the NFC South for the Saints and Drew Brees shattered a record that had been in place for 27 years.
The 12-3 New Orleans Saints have come a long way since the brown bag and "Aints" days. Now, they're busy making history, but their loyal fans have their eyes on more than just the next game or even the playoffs.
It may have been after Christmas, but the presents were abundant Monday night inside the Superdome.
Pierre Thomas made one fan's night, the Saints plucked the Dirty Birds while winning the NFC South, but more importantly, Brees broke Dan Marino's 1984 record of most passing yards in a single season, sending the dome crowd into a frenzy.
"I'm walking on the sidelines and all of a sudden I hear someone say, 'You're really close'," said Brees.
"When he threw that pass to Sproles in the end zone, the place just went nuts," said Dale Carline, a season ticket holder of 35 years.
Carline still remembers watching the first Saints game in 1967 and the "brown bag" and "Aints" days, but that was then.
"From the 2006 season on, it's just been incredible," said Carline.
Now, Carline and many others are looking to repeat Feb. 7, 2010.
Shipments by the truck load are taking over tables at Academy Sporting Goods in Baton Rouge to fulfill every fan's black and gold high.
"We did a pre-order on them anticipating a win and yay!" said Academy apparel manager Mary Williams. "They won, so we put them out this morning at 6 a.m."
Fans like David Hopkins, 9, are already picking out their size, but with hopes of eventually buying a "Super Bowl XLVI World Champion" shirt.
"To get in the playoffs and hopefully, if we battle the Packers again, beat them and win the Super Bowl," said Hopkins.
As for the man fans call "MVP," he has about a week to bask in the glory of his history-making play before tacking on even more yards to his record when the Saints will take on the Panthers.
"Just an amazing moment. I guess you just, you really try not to think of it and then all of a sudden, it happens," said Brees.
Which is what Brees, the team and every fan hopes will happen and take the black and gold to Indianapolis.
"We've got two tickets for the Super Bowl," said Carline.
"South Louisiana, we are on the map," said Williams.
"The journey's not over, not even close. We still got a long ways to go," said Brees.
Brees passed Marino's record of 5,084 yards by three yards. He averages 339 passing yards per game. So, by the end of the 2011 season, Brees could easily set the record past 5,300 yards passed in any given single season.