Fifteen years after Drew Brees signed with the New Orleans Saints and invigorated the ailing franchise, the legendary quarterback has announced his retirement.
The 42-year old QB leaves the game with some pretty impressive stats: 13 trips to the Pro Bowl, two AP Offensive Player of the Year accolades, a 2006 Walter Payton Man of The Year honor, an NFL-record 80,358 yards passing, 571 touchdown passes and a 67.7 completion percentage. And, of course, he leaves New Orleans a 2009 season to cherish forever, having marched the Saints to their one and only Super Bowl and coming away with a victory and the Super Bowl MVP.
Brees made the announcement on Instagram, and as you can see, it was a family affair:
During his press conference with NBC Sports, Brees voiced that the injuries combined with his family guided him to retire:
“At the end of the day, the factors that go into this are, I’ve always said as long as I can play the game at a high level; I’m having fun doing it; and I’m able to stay healthy, then this is something I’ll do forever,” Brees said. “Obviously, I’ve had some injuries the last two years that have been frustrating. Both of them kind of freak things. I don’t think they were injuries that were saying I was getting old.”
“But nonetheless, I had the thumb that ruled me five games 2 years ago, and then had the ribs and the lung that holds me out for four games this past year. Could I keep playing? Yeah, I’m sure I could. But I’m also looking at my kids, my family, the age of my kids, and just gauging all of those things. There’s a balance there. I also just felt like I would just feel it. I would feel when it was time. I felt that it was time.”
It should be interesting to see what Drew Brees does for his next act. Whatever he does, you can be sure that he’ll bring his winning spirit with him!