New Orleans Saints: Is Drew Brees Just a Stat Padder in 2012?

Jamal Collier@@JCollierDAnalyst IIIOctober 29, 2012

DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 28:  Quarterback Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints throws the ball against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field Field at Mile High on October 28, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

Aside from two wins against the San Diego Chargers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers in back-to-back weeks, the only victories that the New Orleans SaintsDrew Brees has spearheaded this NFL season are confined to fantasy football leagues.

There are bound to be plenty of those, seeing as the Saints passer has reached 325 passing yards five times and thrown for multiple touchdowns in all but one game this season. He has eight interceptions in seven games, but hasn’t thrown more than two in any one contest.

New Orleans' field general threw his 300th career touchdown on "Sunday Night Football" against the Denver Broncos in the Saints' fifth loss of the season. One thing is almost certain in a stacked National Football Conference: the Saints are not making the playoffs with their current 2-5 record.

New Orleans is already five games behind the undefeated Atlanta Falcons for the division lead in the NFC South. It doesn’t appear likely that it will get much better for the Saints in 2012 as the defense cannot stop anybody.

The team is allowing an incredible average 50.6 yards per game more than the second-to-last defense in that department, the Buffalo Bills.

Buffalo is allowing 424.1 yards per game. New Orleans: 474.7.

Brees, therefore, is in the midst of a statistically prolific season out of necessity in the NFL: If the Saints don’t stop anyone on defense, he’s going to have to chuck it around regardless of whether the offense was focused on that strategy in the first place.

Opponents know that. The offensive flexibility and threat of a run game gets nullified when New Orleans is forced to play from behind.

As a result, Brees is on pace to throw for 5,280 passing yards—which would not be a career high because he’s that good—along with 41 touchdowns and 16 interceptions.

He’s no longer playing for a contract. The dude wants wins, and any competitor can respect that.

Unfortunately for the Saints’ 2012 season, those wins are more likely to come in the fantasy realm than on an NFL field—but New Orleans should have high first- and third-round draft picks to play under Sean Payton in his 2013 return.