Brees can have a different leading receiver and leading rusher each week. He can torment a defense with eight to 10 different targets.
It does not matter if the receiver is a perennial All-Pro or a guy off of the practice squad. He can be a first-round draft pick or an undrafted free agent floating around training camps.
The point is that Brees will find someone and turn them into a weapon. Most of the offensive skill-position guys on the Saints roster came down a rough path.
Mark Ingram and Robert Meachem are the only first-round picks of that group. Pierre Thomas, Chris Ivory and Lance Moore were undrafted free agents who worked their way up and earned roster spots.
Devery Henderson, Jimmy Graham and Darren Sproles were drafted in Rounds 2, 3 and 4, respectively. Marques Colston was picked up in the seventh round.
Each one of Brees' weapons plays a key role in the Saints offense.
Let's take a look at how each of Brees' targets have done thus far in 2011. I will be grading each weapon based on their performance of the 2011 season and what is expected from them in the role that they play.
2011 Stats: 58 receptions, 826 yards, 14.2 yards per catch, five touchdowns, one fumble
Marques Colston has played exceptionally well this year.
His receptions are down thanks to the emergence of Jimmy Graham and the arrival of Darren Sproles and Mark Ingram, but Colston is still making the most of every catch.
Colston is currently 20th in the NFL in receiving yards, and he missed two games thanks to a collarbone injury. He is the second-leading receiver on the Saints, behind only Graham.
However, Colston's value is unmeasurable. He is a sure-handed target for Drew Brees and always seems to make the tough third-down catches.
He is the Saints' most well-rounded receiver and their true No. 1 guy.
This season has been good for Colston, and he will continue to provide for the Saints as they head into the postseason.
2011 Stats: 45 receptions, 483 yards, 10.7 average, six touchdowns
Lance Moore may have the best hands on the entire Saints squad.
Who Dat Nation knows that Moore typically never drops a ball—it is just not a part of his game.
In 2011, Moore leads the Saints in catch percentage. He is among the NFL leaders in regards to how many balls he has dropped.
Moore will catch the underneath routes for 10 yards, but he also has the ability to catch the ball and run away from defenders. He can catch a ball over the middle with no difficulty as well.
Moore has been a constant contributor to the Saints this season.
He has at least one catch in every game and has caught a touchdown pass in five different games. Moore is expected to be the sneaky receiver that most defenses forget about, and he is known to make the tough grabs.
Based on those expectations, Moore has done well in 2011.
Moore does not get quite as many opportunities as some of the other Saints, but he makes the most out of the ones that he does get.
2011 Stats: 26 receptions, 421 yards, 16.2 yards per catch, two touchdowns
Devery Henderson is still one of the best deep threats in the NFL, and he has proven that again throughout this season.
The only disappointing thing about Henderson is that he tends to disappear in games.
He has three games this season in which he did not catch a pass, and four others in which he only caught one ball.
After starting the year with 265 yards in the first three weeks, Henderson has caught for only 156 in Weeks 4 through 14.
This is not entirely Henderson's fault, because he plays in an offense that has seven other guys capable of scoring on any play.
However, Drew Brees will find the receiver that is open, and Henderson has to do a better job of getting open. He has the ability to catch the deep ball during any game, and that is what he has made a career out of doing. Henderson's career average for yards per catch is 18.3.
He has caught a couple deep balls this year, and that is what the Saints expect from Henderson.
Heading into the playoffs, Henderson will be valued because of his ability to get open deep, and based on those expectations, Henderson has done decently this year.
2011 Stats: 33 receptions, 493 yards, 14.9 yards per catch, five touchdowns
Robert Meachem is practically a clone of Devery Henderson.
He has the ability to create separation and get open deep, and Meachem has done that many times in 2011.
However, he also tends to become invisible in some games, then explode in others.
The Saints have many weapons and that contributes to this, but Meachem would probably get more catches if he were a more well-rounded receiver.
We have seen sparks that suggest that Meachem could be a solid No. 2 receiver, but we need to see it more often.
The Saints primarily use Meachem as a deep threat and decoy. In that role, Meachem is excellent.
If the Saints were to give Meachem more opportunities, then I believe he would become a solid go-to guy, but he is doing just fine in his role as a speedy deep threat.
2011 Stats: 80 receptions, 1,101 yards, 13.8 yards per catch, eight touchdowns
Many people picked Jimmy Graham as a sleeper for the 2011 season, but I am not sure that anyone expected Graham to be this good in his second professional season and only his third year of football ever.
Graham is currently second in the NFL in receptions and fifth in receiving yards.
He is the Saints' leading receiver and Drew Brees' favorite target.
Graham has had some mistakes this year, primarily in drops, but that is expected from a young player, and he has proven time and again that he can correct those mishaps.
Graham has been simply excellent in 2011, and he can only get better from this point on. He has exceeded everyone's expectations, including the Saints'.
2011 Stats: 68 carries, 463 yards, 6.8 yards per carry, 74 receptions, 580 yards, 7.8 yards per catch, 1,017 return yards, seven touchdowns
Darren Sproles has been everything that Reggie Bush was supposed to be and more for the Saints in 2011.
Sproles is literally a jack of all trades.
He has been a constant contributor in nearly every possible way for the Saints. He has run well, caught the ball well and returned kicks well.
I do not believe anyone could have asked for anything more out of Sproles.
He is on his way to having a stellar 2011 season, and many more like it will surely follow. Sproles is exceeding our expectations for him, at the same time fulfilling all of the expectations that Bush never did.
2011 Stats: 88 carries, 435 yards, 4.9 yards per carry, 43 receptions, 344 yards, eight yards per catch, four touchdowns, one fumble
Pierre Thomas has been the same, consistent running back that Saints fans have come to know and love since he became a Saint.
Thomas has been a great rusher this year and is still one of the best screen-play backs in the league.
He has caught the ball well out of the backfield and will continue to be a threat for the Saints for years to come.
Thomas is a great weapon for Drew Brees and the Saints offense. He is great because he is not only dangerous, but he is also one of the hardest-working players on the Saints' roster.
Brees is confident in Thomas and knows what he will get out of him. Thomas never gives up on a play, and that is what the Saints expect out of him. They want a hard runner and good receiving threat.
Thomas is having another good year in 2011, and we should expect him to explode in the playoffs, where Brees will go to the guys he trusts most.
2011 Stats: 122 carries, 474 yards, 3.9 yards per carry, 11 receptions, 46 yards, five touchdowns, one fumble
Mark Ingram has shown some good and bad for the Saints in 2011.
He is the most complete back on the Saints roster, but he has not contributed quite as much as Saints fans hoped he would this year.
Don't get me wrong—I like Ingram, and he has definitely helped the Saints offense this year, but he has not been quite as explosive as we all thought he would be.
Ingram has had one run for more than 20 yards and has yet to reach 100 yards in a game. He has also missed four games with injury, and he will miss the game against Minnesota.
He will develop into a great back, but I believe more was expected from the rookie in 2011.
Ingram has the lowest yards-per-carry average on the Saints, but I look for that to be fixed as he improves and adjusts to the NFL.
He is the Saints' workhorse back, and if he was the only one in the backfield, then he would probably be over 1,000 yards for the season.
Despite the disappointment in Ingram for 2011, he has been a constant contributor to the Saints offense and will be very important heading into the playoffs. He will begin to close out games for the Saints and look more like the guy we watched win a Heisman Trophy at Alabama.
2011 Stats: 34 carries, 138 yards, 4.1 yards per carry
Chris Ivory has not seen the field much in 2011.
The second-year player out of Tiffin University was the Saints' leading rusher last year, but he started the season on the physically unable to perform list and was inactive for a few games.
However, as of late, Ivory has seen the field and has been running well.
He is not the type of back that will catch a lot of passes out of the backfield, but he is a power runner and will get the tough yards. He is similar to Mark Ingram and has the ability to turn a negative run into one for a first down.
With Ingram out with an injury, Ivory may capitalize and prove to the Saints that he is too valuable to leave on the bench.
Ivory and the rest of the running backs will be important heading into the postseason. The Saints discovered last year that you can never have too many healthy running backs, and they will keep their guys as healthy as possible as the regular season comes to an end.
Ivory has performed well in the regular season, and I look for him to carry those efforts over in to the playoffs.