He referred to them as "significant" because they chalked up the Saints' eighth and ninth wins, respectively, helping them remain in control of the race for the NFC South title – two games ahead of the Atlanta Falcons.
However, he didn't say it after Sunday's 22-17 nail-biter over the Tennessee Titans -- mainly because the significance was implied as the Saints (10-3) reached double-digit wins for the third consecutive season.
That's the first time it has happened in the franchise's 45-year history as the Saints won 10 or more games two times in a row in 1987-88 and 1991-92 under former coach Jim Mora and 2009-10 under Payton.
Extra significance came about three hours after the Saints, who retained their two-game cushion over the Falcons, hung on to beat the Titans. While they were en route home, the Denver Broncos clipped the Chicago Bears in overtime, clinching at least a wild-card playoff berth for the Saints.
Over the next three weeks, the Saints, who have to play the Falcons again on Dec. 26 in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, will try to overtake the San Francisco 49ers (10-3) for the No. 2 seed in the NFC.
"That's something you pay attention to," special teams standout Courtney Roby said. "We still have to go out and handle our business. As long as we go out there and continue to play, everything will fall into place. But if we go out there and don't do the things we're supposed to all that doesn't matter."
Gannon did it in 2002 with the Oakland Raiders and Brees, who has three regular-season games in which to claim the record, first accomplished the feat in 2008.
Brees also had at least one touchdown pass in his 40th consecutive game, extending the NFL's second-longest streak all-time with the first of two scoring strikes to Marques Colston in the fourth quarter.
Brees is now seven games behind the NFL record of 47 straight games with at least one touchdown pass, which is held by Johnny Unitas.
Graham said the back stiffened up on him and he had to return to the locker room to get treatment, which included ultrasound and electrical stimulation. That allowed him to get on the field by the Saints' third offensive play and he went on to catch five passes for 55 yards.
"I was running routes and caught an awkward ball, and everything kind of shifted," Graham said. "The pain doesn't matter ... it doesn't matter what I'm going through. I'm still going to play."
The only teams Payton has not defeated are the Baltimore Ravens and Denver Broncos. He has lost twice to the Ravens and once to the Broncos, who he'll face again in 2012 in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
Going into the 2011 season, Payton did not own a regular-season win over the Titans, Chicago Bears, Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts -- but has scratched each of them off his list.
The Saints are now 15-9 against the AFC in Payton's six seasons with the team -- going 4-0 in 2009 and again this season -- and has won 13 of the last 15 since a Week 3 loss to the Denver Broncos in 2008.
They are 5-0 this season after scoring on their first series.