By Matt Ferris
Going into Monday night’s game against the Washington Redskins, Drew Brees was ranked third all-time in passing yards in NFL history.
Only fellow greats Brett Favre and Peyton Manning had more career yards with 71,838 and 71,940, respectively.
Brees entered the game with 71,740 yards and only needed 98 yards to overtake Favre for second all-time and 200 yards to surpass Manning as the all-time passing leader in NFL history.
Considering Brees has thrown for under 200 yards at the Super Dome just once in his career, it was almost a forgone conclusion that he would walk out of Week 5 as number one all-time.
That assumption was right, as Brees broke the record by halftime, throwing for 250 in the first half alone.
The milestone was an extremely emotional one for Brees because of his history in the league.
Coming into the league in 2001 out of Purdue, many said Brees was too short to play quarterback in the NFL and that he would never be good.
On top of this, in just his Tfth NFL season, Brees suffered a devastating injury for a quarterback. He tore the labrum in his throwing shoulder.
Many said Brees would never come back from this injury the same, and that he wouldn’t even be able to throw a ball.
Brees became a free agent the next season, and the Saints were just one of two teams that even inquired about him. Eventually, Brees chose to sign in New Orleans on a pretty small contract in quarterback terms – just $10 million for one year.
Brees proved all the naysayers wrong and came back from the injury better than ever. Since his injury, he has played every season, never failing to throw for under 4,000 yards and never throwing for under 20 touchdown passes in a season.
Brees is one of the most consistent players in NFL history, and frankly doesn’t get the respect he deserves.
Before Brees arrived in New Orleans, the Saints were one of the worst teams in the NFL. Since his arrival, Brees has turned the franchise around, making them a championship contender every season.
Brees has also been to the Pro Bowl 10 of his 12 seasons with the Saints.
He has even won a Super Bowl, a Super Bowl MVP, and two Offensive Player of the Year awards.
And yet, you never hear Brees’ name in the conversation about who is the best quarterback of all time.
Not only does Brees hold the passing record in the NFL, but by the time he retires, he could very easily have the most touchdown passes in NFL history, as he is currently sitting in fourth place all-time.
Brees now has 499 in his career, just 40 behind Peyton Manning for number one all-time, making 2019 a realistic time frame for Brees to capture that record as well.
Brees is tremendously undervalued considering he is in the top five in the two most important statistical categories for a quarterback.
He deserves much more respect and recognition for the career that he has put together and needs to be considered in the conversation of the best quarterback ever.