Saints' Drew Brees channels Herm Edwards: 'You play to win the game'

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Observed and heard in the locker room after the New Orleans Saints' 28-10 victory over the Carolina Panthers on Thursday night:

Playing to win: Drew Brees channeled Herm Edwards' classic rant when asked about how the Saints haven't let up on their aggressive, risk-taking nature despite some costly turnovers earlier in the season and during the first half of Sunday's game.

"You Play To Win The Game!" Brees said with emphasis (once he cleared up the confusion between the famous rants of Edwards and Dennis Green). "Listen, if you're worried about bad things happening all the time and you play conservative and you play not to win, that's when things don't go your way."

The Saints' decisions to push for a two-minute drill touchdown with no timeouts before halftime and to score on a fourth-and-1 dive by Brees both paid off big time.

Graham's emotional head-butt: The cameras caught Saints tight end Jimmy Graham head-butting the bench on the sideline. He said afterward that he had to get out the frustration after the way the team started slow and everyone had written them off. He said this was an emotional win for him.

Injury updates: The Saints didn't release many specific injury updates after the game, but coach Sean Payton referenced three players being hurt. One was offensive tackle Zach Strief, who said he'll be OK after taking a knee to the back and being "bruised up." Receiver Kenny Stills also left the game temporarily with a groin injury. CBS reported during the broadcast that Mark Ingram was fighting a shoulder injury, but he toughed it out with a career-high 30 carries. And Graham noticeably winced a few times because of his continuing shoulder pain. But he also toughed it out before wrapping it in ice after the game.

The payoff for the Saints' extra-short turnaround between a Sunday night home game and Thursday night road game is that now they have 10 days to heal up for the next one.