Saints' Thomas shines in Super Bowl win

Pierre Thomas celebrates after the New Orleans Saints beat the Indianapolis Colts in Super Bowl XLIV. Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

MIAMI -- "We're Super Bowl champs, we're Super Bowl champs," former Illinois and current New Orleans Saints running back Pierre Thomas kept repeating after his team’s 31-17 win over the Indianapolis Colts.

Thomas played a major role in the Saints’ offensive attack, compiling 85 all-purpose yards, including a 16-yard touchdown reception in the third quarter.

"It was one of our regular screens we always run," Thomas said. "It was a quick little draw fake, and I thought I was going to get held up by one of their linemen, but luckily he fell down. My offensive line and receivers did a heck of a job setting up their blocks downfield, and I just read my blocks. All I kept thinking about was to get in that end zone because this was going to be a big momentum swing."

"Pierre is a great player with a lot of heart," fellow Illinois alum and Indianapolis defensive back Kelvin Hayden said.

So just how long is the party going to last in New Orleans?

"Forever," Thomas said, smiling wide.