New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees retires

Saints QB Drew Brees announces his retirement after 20 years in the NFL

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Drew Brees has long represented one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks.

Announced on Instagram on Sunday, March 14, New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees publicized his decision to retire from the NFL. “After 20 years in the NFL and 15 years as a Saint, it is time I retire from the game of football,” Brees said. Coming after the Saint’s loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Super Bowl LV, many fans were not surprised by Brees’s news. Throughout his career, Brees has been commended for his unparalleled dedication and consistency in the game. He achieved many accomplishments and broke multiple records, such as most career passing yards (80,358), most career completions (7,142) and second-most passing touchdowns, with 571 in the books. In 2006, he won the Walter Payton Man of the Year honor, an award that recognizes players for their leadership and excellence both on and off the field. One of his biggest achievements, though, is a 2010 Super Bowl win with the Saints whose head coach Sean Payton stated, “talent, work ethic, makeup, intelligence and leadership are all qualities we found in Drew Brees. His attention to detail and competitive spirit were infectious. For all of us that have had the chance to coach him, it has been our privilege, we are better for it.”

Accompanying his retirement post, a video showed Brees’s children, Baylen, Bowen, Callen and Rylen beyond excited with the announcement, as Brees mentioned that this retirement was so he could spend more time with his kids. In the caption of the video, the 42-year-old stated that he is not retiring from New Orleans, just football, and this new beginning is where his “real life’s work begins.” Many long-time fans of Brees have come to respect the decision as the athlete has worked hard for so many years.  “It’s not surprising he’s retiring, he’s pretty old to be playing football. He has a bunch of kids and I think it’s time for him to settle down and just start spending time with his family. Maybe he can start doing something that’ll help the community since he’s pretty influential,” sophomore Gabe Semidey said. In 2003, Brees and his wife established the Brees Dream Foundation, an organization that supports cancer patients and provides educational opportunities and medical help for families in need. However, his philanthropic efforts do not stop there. Since the pandemic, Brees and his wife have donated over $5 million to the state of Louisiana for relief in the fight against COVID-19.

With Brees, arguably one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks, leaving, New Orleans and other Saints fans from around the country are wondering how the following season will turn out without him. Jameis Winston, the current front-runner for Brees’s starting place, is expected to sign a 1 year $12 million contract. Also up for the job is Saints utility player/quarterback Taysom Hill. Although plans are not set in stone yet, Saints fans stand hopeful that Coach Payton will make the right choice with the future of the team.