The New Orleans Saints have been a different franchise since the arrival of quarterback Drew Brees in 2006. Coming to New Orleans with head coach Sean Payton, the two worked together, along with other coaches and players, to turn around a team with a history consisting mostly of disappointment. Over the past six seasons, the Saints' offense has been dominant. In 101 games Brees has thrown 211 touchdown passes, and he now sits tied with the legendary Johnny Unitas after completing a touchdown pass in 47 consecutive games. As a Saints fan, I am thrilled to see Brees have a shot at breaking the tie and having the record to himself.
Despite the team's current 0-4 start, New Orleans fans love our offense and our quarterback. Brees has led the league in completions, completion percentage, passing yards and passing touchdowns numerous times since joining the Saints. More importantly he has helped the organization achieve success, leading the team to the postseason four times and even winning the Super Bowl in the 2009 season.
When Brees takes the field attempting to set the record on Sunday, October 7, he will be facing his former team in the San Diego Chargers. In five seasons with the Chargers, Brees threw 80 touchdowns in 59 games. He was named to the Pro Bowl in 2004 after throwing 27 touchdowns and only seven interceptions.
In 160 career games, Brees has played only 24 without a touchdown pass, including games when he did not play all four quarters. Of his 12 seasons in the NFL, however, 2012 may end up being the most difficult so far, as Brees deals with the suspensions of Payton, assistant coach Joe Vitt and general manager Mickey Loomis for alleged participation in a bounty program. Fortunately, the NFL will allow all three to be present on Sunday as Brees attempts to throw a touchdown in his 48th straight game.
As a Saints fan, I simply want the team to win. If Brees gets the record on his way to a Saints victory, that would be even better. I am proud of all that Brees has accomplished and hope he can break this record, but I look forward to the day when the focus is on the team's success again.
Mike Patton is a sports fan who grew up in New Orleans cheering for the New Orleans Saints, Chicago Cubs, and LSU Tigers. As a kid in 1987, he made his first trip to Wrigley Field and also slept outside of the Louisiana Superdome to purchase playoff tickets for the Saints' first postseason appearance. Follow Mike on twitter @MikePattonGBS.