Lambert was without his assistants Ian Culverhouse and Gary Karsa after they were suspended by the club.
He watched his side end a run of four successive defeats to pick up a welcome point against eighth-placed Saints at Villa Park on Saturday.
The result provided some relief for Lambert, who felt it was a very good point for his side to move five points clear of the drop zone.
He told Sky Sports: "I think so after everything that went on. The lads deserve an enormous amount of credit for the way they've performed.
"Energy, determination, the ugly side of the game, the attacking sense - I couldn't be any prouder of the way they performed today.
"We do (have a buffer) and the goal difference is pretty good as well. We might need one more (point). I not sure what it will take, but you just keep going to get over that line."
Villa received a real let-off when Nathaniel Clyne's attempted cross hit Ryan Bertrand on the hand late in the game, but referee Lee Mason waved away appeals.
"I think we deserved it (a break)," said the Scot. "You get breaks. We've had ones that have not went or us, but I couldn't see it if I'm being honest. But if there's a team that deserved a break this week, it's us."