NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Drew Brees has set an NFL record with touchdown passes in 48 straight games, breaking the mark set by Johnny Unitas a half-century ago.
The record-setting scoring strike was a 40-yard pass to Devery Henderson against the San Diego Chargers on Sunday night.
Unitas set the record between 1956 and 1960 and no one had come within 10 games until Brees began to close in late last season. Tom Brady has the third-longest streak, extending his to 37 games Sunday in a victory over Denver.
Coach Sean Payton, assistant head coach Joe Vitt and general manager Mickey Loomis - all three suspended in the NFL's bounty investigation - were permitted by the NFL at Brees' request to attend the game.
Unitas' son, Joe, also was present.
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)