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Another TD at the office.
I have to say that of any quarterback in recent history, Drew Brees over the past four years has played so well and so consistently and with such outrageous production that he can almost overcome his D.
Not that the Saints’ defense is exactly shoddy. They aren’t. But they haven’t replicated that perfect storm of the Super Bowl year. Sharper anchored the secondary so that Harper and Porter could intercept anything within a 10-foot radius and Jonathan Vilma transformed the spirit of not only a linebacking corps, but of an entire defensive unit.
There is a reason that Sean Payton demanded Vilma be brought up to the Super Bowl platform to hoist the Lombardi Trophy.
Vilma has been hurt, Sharper had to retire and they just haven’t been the same. I thought that a Gregg Williams’ D would always be a ferocious force of nature. But the last two years, not so much. I keep trying to figure it out. And I keep coming back to Sharper.It wasn’t so much his playing ability at the end of his career. It must have been largely leadership.
For whatever reason, they are not as good as they were. And yet, Brees keeps winning games.
What? I can hear you now. Didn’t you see the Rams’ debacle on Sunday? Yes, and I think the weirdness of the past two weeks has a lot to do with Sean Payton’s injury. Things aren’t right at the top and it’s rattled the team.
But you certainly can’t blame it on Drew Brees. Brees has “thrown a touchdown pass in 35 consecutive games and needs one more to tie Brett Favre for the second-longest such streak in league history. Johnny Unitas holds the NFL record with 47 in a row.”
And I might point out that with sweeping injuries and changes on the O-line, Brees has been sacked 19 times this year—by far his highest rate of butt-on-the-ground situations since his arrival in the Big Easy.
No. 9’s passer rating may be “only” 100.6, but his completion percentage is 70.6! Even without Colston available for a time, Drew has thrown almost twice as many TDs as INTs, and that is a very poor ratio for him. Did I mention that he has passed for 2,746 yards, averaging 327 per game through the air?
The team is 5-3. Well, that’s not as good as Green Bay’s record, you say. Brees has as many weapons as Rodgers, you say. And, yes, before you write to me—I know that the Saints have the No. 15 defense and the Packers’ unit is at No. 28.
But the Saints’ secondary (which won them both the NFC Championship and the Super Bowl), has only four INTs, and the defensive squad has allowed over 150 yards per game on the ground. See notes on the Colts above to grasp the magnitude of how bad that is.
And Brees just keeps setting records. I don’t really believe that Drew can single-handedly win a Super Bowl if the D (and the O-line) doesn't get their act together, but, darn, he could come close.