Report: Saints tried to coax Drew Brees out of retirement before signing Blake Bortles
Down to their last quarterback, the New Orleans Saints almost pulled off a Christmas miracle.
Earlier this week, the team found itself down to its last quarterback, fourth-round rookie Ian Book, after Taysom Hill and Trevor Siemian hit the reserve/COVID-19 list while Jameis Winston remains out with a torn ACL. With a Monday night game against the Miami Dolphins coming up, the team signed Blake Bortles to back up Book, but they called some more interesting names before the former Jacksonville Jaguars starter.
You can probably guess the first name on their speed dial.
A Drew Brees return? QB reportedly considered it
According to Jeff Duncan of The Times-Picayune, Saints head coach Sean Payton lobbied franchise legend Drew Brees to come out of retirement for one game only, as Hill and Siemian should both be available again next week.
Despite being on vacation in Hawaii with his family, Brees reportedly "gave the idea some serious thought."
A reported hang-up was Brees, currently working as an analyst for NBC Sports, wanted to start if he was going to make a shocking return, but he eventually decided he wasn't sure he could be perform as needed with only a few days notice, despite his preexisting knowledge of the Saints' playbook.
Other quarterbacks the Saints contacted after Brees were reportedly Philip Rivers and Josh McCown, but neither apparently worked out. Meanwhile, former Saints starter Archie Manning had jokes for Payton as he was scrambling:
The legendary Saints quarterback texted coach Sean Payton photos of himself, recently retired sons Peyton and Eli, and grandsons Arch and Marshall and jokingly told Payton, “All 5 are available. Make your pick!”
Given what he have heard about Arch Manning, Rivals' No. 1 recruit in the Class of 2023, the Saints could have done worse (NFL draft rules aside).