But they backed their way into it with an ugly 31-24 loss at Tampa Bay - allowing the Buccaneers to march 95 yards for the game-winning touchdown in the final two minutes.
Kamara topped 1,500 yards in impressive fashion, hauling a 40-yard pass from Drew Brees. Saints safety Marcus Williams intercepted Winston at the Saints' 35 to set up the drive. Tampa Bay then followed with a 51-yard drive in 10 plays and a 42-yard field goal by Patrick Murray to get within 24-23 with 4:31 to play in the game. Isaiah Johnson scooped up the loose ball and returned it 7 yards for a touchdown and a 20-17 lead with 14:04 left.
Kamara has 14 touchdowns and is the first rookie to have at least five receiving touchdowns, five rushing touchdowns and one kickoff return for a score since Gale Sayers in 1965.
The Bucs had taken the lead back in the fourth quarter with a huge play on special teams.
The Saints (11-5) "won" their first NFC South title in six years and will host the Carolina Panthers (11-5) next weekend as the NFC's No. 4 seed.
The first score of the second half came with 2:44 left in the third quarter as Saints' kicker Wil Lutz connected on a 48-yarder to put New Orleans up 17-13.
The half ended with the Saints up 14-13 and leading in total yards 233 to 125 as quarterback Brees was 7 of 13 for 86 yards. It was outgained by the Buccaneers, 455-323, and punt returner Tommylee Lewis coughed up a costly fumble that Tampa Bay returned for a 7-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter. Murray missed the extra point wide right.