(Feb. 18) If there is any poetic justice in the NFL, all-time passing leader Drew Brees will win a Super Bowl this coming year.

The 41-year-old Brees announced Tuesday he will play one more season for the New Orleans Saints. Not only is he one of the classiest, most civic-minded people in all of professional sports, but he has played more than well enough to participate in several more Super Bowls than the only one he actually played in and won as the Most Valuable Player 10 years ago.

Every time the Saints have made the playoffs since then, Brees has played well enough to win, only to be let down by late defensive lapses or blown officiating or both. The games usually have ended with Brees on the sideline, with no chance to add to his own heroics.

After the 2010 season, Brees led the Saints’ offense to 36 points as he completed 39 of 60 passes for 404 yards and two touchdowns, all without a turnover. But the defense allowed the birthing of Marshawn Lynch’s “Beast Mode” as the Seattle Seahawks put up 41 points for the win. The next year Brees’s offense scored 32 points as he went 40 of 63 for 462 yards and four TDs — two of which, plus a two-point conversion, came in the final 4:02 of play. But the defense, again missing tackles all over the field, gave up two TDs in the final 2:11, resulting in a 36-32 defeat to the San Francisco 49ers.

Two years later, Brees was merely superb, not otherworldly, as he threw for 309 yards in another loss to the Seahawks, as the defense gave up another 140 yards on the ground to Lynch. Result: 23-15, Seattle.

After a three-year hiatus from the playoffs, Brees and the Saints returned for three straight heartbreaks. Never before in NFL history has a team lost playoff games three consecutive years on the final play of the game, but the Saints did….

[The full column is at this link.]


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