Drew Brees Passing Record: New Orleans Saints QB Breaks Dan Marino's Yard Mark

Eli NachmanyCorrespondent IIIDecember 26, 2011

NEW ORLEANS, LA - DECEMBER 26:  (R) Quarterback Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints celebrates throwing a 24-yard third quarter touchdown pass against the Atlanta Falcons at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 26, 2011 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

It only took 15 games, and Drew Brees is now the holder of the NFL's single-season passing yardage record.

Before Monday night's game between the Saints and Falcons, former Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino held the record of 5,084 for 27 years.

A 24-yard touchdown pass to Robert Meachem brought Brees 31 yards away from the hallowed record.

The Purdue-graduate quarterback proceeded to break the record on a later drive, with a nine-yard touchdown pass to Darren Sproles.

As for Brees' team, the New Orleans Saints, beating the Falcons on Monday night locked up the NFC South title and brought the team a step closer to a first-round bye.

Coach Sean Payton has helped Brees become a top-level quarterback, as Payton has installed an easy offense to help his star 2006 free-agent acquisition succeed.

Brees was cut by his former team, the San Diego Chargers, when Charger brass had concerns about the health of No. 9's shoulder plus Philip Rivers in reserve.

The Saints took a chance on the signal-caller and it's paid off, with perennial playoff appearances and a Super Bowl win in 2009.

With Brees playing like he is of late, it's conceivable to think that the Saints could return to the Super Bowl this year.

The Saints field-general adds to his Hall of Fame resume, which includes a Super Bowl title and now the yardage record. If Brees keeps this up for a few more years, he could be headed to Canton.

As for Marino, who lost his record on Monday night, the quarterback's legacy continues to fade.

Marino never won a Super Bowl in his NFL career, but he is still remembered as one of the best quarterbacks of all time for his prolific passing and consistency.

Unfortunately, without a Lombardi trophy and without the single-season yards record anymore, the argument for Marino gets weaker and weaker as the years go on.

It was a special night in New Orleans, as Brees was able to set the record in front of the home crowd at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in the most spectacular of ways—against the rival Atlanta Falcons on Monday Night Football.

The Saints play the Panthers next week, where Brees could give himself some cushion from Marino's old record.