After the game, Brees said he's "concerned" and is "hoping it's not too significant," adding he will see a hand specialist in Los Angeles, according to Mike Triplett of ESPN.
"It's all up in the air right now," Brees added. "I really don't know at this point. There's only so much you can do here other than have a doctor look at it on the sideline."
Erin Andrews of Fox Sports gave insight into the extent of the injury when Brees did not return to the game:
Jeff Duncan of The Athletic put the injury in perspective:
The 40-year-old continues to post excellent numbers. He threw for 3,992 yards, 32 touchdowns and five interceptions in 2018, completing a single-season record 74.4 percent of his passes.
He earned a grade of 94.2 from Pro Football Focus, making him the top-ranked quarterback in the league.
Brees is a 12-time Pro Bowler, was a first-team All-NFL selection by the Associated Press in 2006 and has been named the AP Offensive Player of the Year twice (2008, 2011). He's led the Saints to the postseason seven times, which included winning Super Bowl XLIV over the Indianapolis Colts.
He's also remained durable, missing just three games since he joined the Saints in 2006. That makes any injury that threatens to cost him playing time rare, but also concerning for New Orleans.
It's hard to imagine the Saints being as lethal without their offensive leader. While the team will likely lean even more heavily on running back Alvin Kamara, Michael Thomas will need to come up big to support backup quarterback Teddy Bridgewater.
Most teams aren't equipped to make playoff runs without their starting quarterbacks. Given how productive Brees has been in his career and how familiar he is with Sean Payton's system, the Saints are particularly unequipped to win without him, even if Bridgewater appears to be one of the better backup options in the NFL.