CHICAGO | At 5-foot-11 and 215 pounds, Pierre Thomas looks like a high school running back.
But in his No. 23 New Orleans Saints uniform the T.F. South grad is a super hero straight from Marvel Comics, though none of the Bears were in a laughing mood Sunday.
Thomas highlighted the Saints' 26-18 win with 36 yards rushing and nine receptions for 55 yards and two touchdowns.
It marked the Saints' first win in Chicago for coach Sean Payton, quarterback Drew Brees and local kid Thomas.
"This is back home for me," Thomas said. "When I'm back here, I think about friends, family, teachers, coaches, people who helped me get to where I am now.
"When I step on that field, it's like: 'Perform the way you can and show off for those people.' And that's what I did. The offensive line and the rest of the players did a heckuva job to help me today."
The Lynwood native was undrafted out of the University of Illinois and feels he still has to prove himself in this, his seventh season.
"You got these young guys like Khiry (Robinson). He's a great running back; a very smart kid," Thomas said. "I gotta stay up with guys like Mark Ingram and Travaris Cadet; play at the same tempo.
"I'm older, so I gotta show I still got it."
Sunday was only Thomas' 28th start in 82 career games.
"When my name is called to do the job, I go out there and do my best," Thomas said. "I've been striving and striving the last four games to get a touchdown and was so close, but wasn't quite there.
"I told myself: 'Hey, quit playing around. You gotta score and put some points up on the board in your hometown.'"
Thomas said that with a boyish smile not found on many NFL veterans today. But with these 5-0 Saints, the pressure is evenly distributed on a deep and talented roster.
"We talked about this game a lot last week. We wanted to come in and do something we hadn't done before," Thomas said.
"We got a 'W' in Chicago, on THEIR field, in my HOMETOWN, and it feels just great."