Linebackers Jo-Lonn Dunbar and Marvin Mitchell have both helped shore up the New Orleans Saints defense, this year. Les East, of, has the story, below.

Jo-Lonn Dunbar of the New Orleans Saints poses for his 2009 NFL headshot at photo day in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Courtesy---Les East/

As the New Orleans Saints defense faced perhaps its biggest challenge of the season, two of its least-heralded players helped key an outstanding effort.

Linebackers Jo-Lonn Dunbar and Marvin Mitchell helped shore up a run defense that was battered by Baltimore a week earlier and shut down an Atlanta running game that had battered it early in the season.

The result was a 17-14 win against the Falcons on Monday, which sent the Saints back into the playoffs and put the defense back on track heading into the regular-season finale against Tampa Bay on Sunday in the Superdome.