Those ailments included a torn rotator cuff in his shoulder, a torn fascia in his foot, 11 broken ribs and a collapsed lung.
Brees, 42, previously missed five weeks this season due to his rib and lung injuries. In the meantime, Taysom Hill took over as the Saints' starter until Brees was healthy enough to run back out onto the field.
The veteran went 9-3 in 12 starts this year while passing for 2,942 yards, 24 touchdowns and just six interceptions.
Despite having Hill and Jameis Winston behind him on the depth chart, Brees was able to hold onto his job and lead the Saints to an NFC South title before falling to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the Divisional Round. It's unclear if that will ultimately become the final NFL game of his career.
If so, he gutted it out through injuries that may have kept him off the field for longer at a different point in his career.
The 13-time Pro Bowler and former Super Bowl champion gave his team all he had and then some.