Drew Brees Charcoal Drawing
by Sports Artist John Robertson
If I made $60 million over six years to play football for the New Orleans Saints and was starting to run out of time, the last position I would want to play is quarterback — even if I was Drew Brees playing in the Super Bowl XLIV on Sunday. I would like to keep my teeth and legs in one piece. You would not find me walking onto a field with Indianapolis Colts’ tandem defensive ends Dwight Freeney (who will probably start) and Robert Mathis while saying, "Catch me if you can." Because they can catch me, and I would not want to walk away from each football game having to ice my whole body. There are easier ways to make $10 million a year.
I fully understand guys that take the money and run. But Brees just stands in that pocket – waiting. Drew waits like a hunter waits for a charging elephant to get close enough before firing off a shot. Me? I’d be out of that pocket so fast. I am not hanging around for 312 pounds of the Colts' defensive tackle Daniel Muir to come plowing through the Saints’ line. No way.
I would not assume that middle linebacker Gary Brackett is too small to be effective. You may not know this: although the male lion is larger and is the king, it is the lioness that eats first. Brackett has the same great instincts and is "hard-nosed" enough to dominate. Whether it is blitzing or covering a receiver, he can intimidate a quarterback.
There are safer activities than playing quarterback in the NFL. For example, jumping off a bridge with a big rubber band tied to your ankles or free climbing the face of El Capitán (look mom, no rope). There must be a better way to finish off the last couple of years of a $60 million contract. If it were me, I’d want to be on the sidelines sending in hand signals as a back-up quarterback or, if I must be in the game, I’d like to hold the ball for the placekicker.
Why is Drew Brees out on the field taking the hits? He likes to throw the football. That's what he is about. Runners run. Kickers kick. Fighters fight. Quarterbacks throw. Brees leads and others follow. I watch.