Pardew said: "Everybody keeps leaning on last year, but no-one knows those facts more than us - that's why we changed the squad, me and the chairman. His backing has been tremendous for me.
"We have changed the team and now suddenly we look like we have got goals in it. We would never have scored three goals in the second half of last season."
If Pardew left Wearside elated, opposite number David Moyes was left bitterly disappointed as his side slipped to familiar territory at the foot of the table.
He said: "I didn't think we had played well enough to be 2-0, I have got to say, but I was taking it all day, I was saying, 'great, we have got it'.
"But for us not to do the basics well enough, for us not to head the ball clear when it was kicked up the pitch after they scored, for someone to not go with Benteke when we gave a poor free-kick away in the last minute...
"Benteke is arguably the best header of the ball in the Premier League and nobody got close. We nearly gave him a free run and a jump, and the second goal, we never defended the back post, the full-back never got any cover and it caused us problems.
"It's our own fault, it's nobody else's fault. But the players need to take responsibility. It can't always be me leading them by the hand and showing them where they should be and what they should do.
"They have to stand up and take a bit of responsibility for what they do on the pitch."