Thursday, 29 December 2011

Congrat'Drew'lations to Mr Brees and his pocket rocket

It had to be in the fourth quarter, it had to be in the last 5 minutes of the game, it had to be Monday Night Football, it had to be at home in the Super Dome, and it had to be to the smallest player in the league.

Nothing but drama for one of the NFL's most undramatic, humble superstars ever to have put on the pads and a bronze lid.

With his 9 yard td pass to 5 ft 6 inch Darren Sproles in the final period against the Falcons, New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees finally broke one of the NFL's truly memorable records - most passing yards in a season.

At last we can consign Dan Marino and all his yards to the 'old' record file, as Brees has now passed for three more yards (5087) that Marino did (5084 in 1984), and what makes this record even more special is that Brees has surpassed the milestone after just 15 games.

Tom Brady had already etched himself into the NFL record book with a blockbuster 50 touchdown passes in a single season a few years ago, beating Marino's 48 td tosses, and now Brees, with 5,087 yards has the single season passing record to wipe Marino's name from another record.

It is bizzare that Tom Brady could (even though it is highly unlikely) end the season with more yards than Brees and capture both passing records - but I think Brees will finish Week 17 with a big bang and another 300 yard performance to set a record that will be harder to beat than a steel egg.

Brees was a true gent when interviewed at the end of the game, he made sure to thank his team-mates, his coaches and the fans. He has to one day thank himself. With one Super Bowl winners ring already safe on the mantle Brees has the offense to mount a run at this year's Vince Lombardi Trophy.

It was fitting that pocket dynamo Darren Sproles caught the pass that broke the record as Sproles has taken the phrase utility back to a whole new plane. Look at Sproles stats in 15 games:
  • 563 rushing yards and two tds (at a whopping 7.0 yards a carry)
  • 81 catches for 681 yards and six tds
  • 1,035 kick return yards
  • 249 punt return yards and a td
Brees has the passing record and yes he may be humble, but he is also spot on, as without the likes of Darren Sproles he would not have gained 5,087 yards in 15 games.

The bigger question now is how far can the Saints go in 2011? They lost their season opener to the Green Bay Packers, and if they are going to go to the Super Bowl in 2012 then they will likely have to leapfrog the Lambeau Leapers in the bitterly chilly winds of Wisconsin.

Brees v Rodgers is worthy of a Super Bowl itself, but at this pace it will very likely be the NFC Championship game, and I for one can't wait.

The two gunslingers could both throw 50 passes each in the game and outfirework (lovely word eh!) New Years Day celebrations around the world.

Lawrence Vos
Primetime Sports NFL blogger
Twitter @nflfaninengland

1 comment:

  1. Good article, I would've done something similar but have already banged my 'Drew Brees for MVP' drum as often as humanly possible ;)