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What Almost Wasn't: The Drew Brees Story

NEW ORLEANS - JANUARY 24:  Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints celebrates the Saints 31-28 overtime win against the Minnesota Vikings during the NFC Championship Game at the Louisiana Superdome on January 24, 2010 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images
Michael SchwarzbaumContributor IISeptember 3, 2016

To be or not to be.

Chicken or fish.

Drew Brees or Daunte Culpepper. 

With every decision, in life or in football, there are going to be regrets.  The regret of choosing a wrong main dish is not comparable to choosing Culpepper. 

Rather, choosing Culpepper is like choosing a three-week old piece of chicken with anthrax all over it.

A bit much?  Nah.

The Dolphins had the first choice.  Culpepper was waiting on what the Dolphins would decide on the Brees signing.

Logically, when choosing between two injured quarterbacks, you choose the one with the injury that doesn't affect the throwing motion.  Except when the other one is good  because of his legs, and his injury is on his knee.

And you guys are gonna tell me that, "Culpepper was not just good because of his legs."  To which I respond, "Gunslingers come and go in the NFL.  You need your own niche."  Culpepper's niche was running.

Comparatively, the Dolphins picked the Royals to win the World Series.  They picked the Florida Panthers to win the MLS cup.  I know the Panthers play in the NHL.  The exaggeration was clearly an over-emphasis of my words.) Things that are not bad career moves.  They are bad choices that will result in your job, not being your job anymore. 

Statistically, let us break it down.  Culpepper threw for 3,991 combined yards in his last four seasons, the first one being with the Dolphins.  Comparatively, Drew Brees' lowest passing total in a season since the Dolphins passed on him, has been 4,388 yards, 397 yards more than Culpepper, and Brees missed a start.

The fates of the two teams have been such polar opposites, that it makes Tim and Matt Hasselback seem indistinguishable. 

The Dolphins are on their seventh starting quarterback since signing Daunte.  The Saints recently started Brunell, in order to rest Brees.  That is the only game that Brees has not started since he was signed.

As I saw Brees raise the NFC Championship trophy tonight, I thought that the Dolphins could have had him.  They could have had a stable quarterback.  Instead, our idea of a steady quarterback is so messed-up, that Cleo Lemon was the Dolphins' starting quarterback for a couple of games.

The past was, and the future will be.

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood.  The Dolphins took the conventional pick and that has made all the difference.


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