On March 14, 2006, quarterback Drew Brees signed a six-year deal with the New Orleans Saints. Exactly fifteen years later, Brees took to Instagram with an announcement: after a 20-year career in the NFL, 15 of which were with the Saints, he would be retiring from the sport. His total career passing yards — 80,358 — are a league record.
“I am only retiring from playing football, I am not retiring from New Orleans,” Brees wrote on Instagram. “This is not goodbye, rather a new beginning. Now my real life‘s work begins!”
At Yahoo! Sports, Frank Schwab points out the transformative effect Brees had on the Saints. He joined a team that had recently explored a move to San Antonio; a few months before he signed, Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans. Brees’s work in the community and his aid in helping rebuild the city quickly established him as a local favorite. More recently, Brees and his wife Brittany donated $5 million for coronavirus relief efforts in Louisiana.
Among his career highlights are 13 Pro Bowl appearances and 7 seasons in which he led the league in passing. And in 2009, his efforts to lead the Saints to a Super Bowl victory led to his being named the game’s MVP. His was a long and impressive career, and a Hall of Fame spot seems all but guaranteed in a few years’ time.
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