From the New Orleans Saints official website.
Q: Can you talk about making the Pro Bowl?
Brees: "It’s a big honor. It’s obviously a testament to what we were able to do offensively this year and I think a lot of guys share in that, the offensive line certainly, all of skill position guys. They were all a part of that success and that recognition."
Q: Is the moral of the story this week to not be the team that loses to Detroit?
Brees: "The fact is, we are where we are. We want to finish 9-7. We want to finish the season on a high note. They’re 0-14. When you watch the film, they could have won half of those games, probably even more, so they’re definitely not a 0-14 team. I know they’re carrying around a little bit of that right now where no team’s ever gone winless. I’m sure they feel like their best opportunity might be this week. We know we have our work cut out for us playing at their place. In our minds, we’re going to focus on what we need to do to help us win, playing our best football. We know that if we’re out there playing our best, it gives us a chance."
Q: Is it tough for your team to keep the same level of enthusiasm being out of the playoff race?
Brees: "That’s tough, really tough, but if you have any self pride or self motivation you have to muster it up now. Obviously I think in regards to ending the season on a high note, if we can win this one and the next one we will have won five of your last seven. To go down the stretch having won five of your last seven is pretty good."
Q: Do you want to break the passing yardage record in a season where you guys won’t be going to the playoffs?
Brees: "That’s a huge record. Would it be an honor to break it? Yes. Would it be something we could all share in? Absolutely. Do I wish if it does happen that it would have come with a playoff season? 100 percent, no doubt. If it happens, it happens. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t. It’s a huge record, one of the bigger ones in the game."
Q: If Coach Payton gave you the opportunity, do you want to keep throwing in these last two games?
Brees: "Whatever it takes to win."
Q: What if he gave you that opportunity regardless of the score?
Brees: "I don’t know. I’m trying not to think about it."
Q: Do you think that passing yardage can be amassed in two games?
Brees: "We’ve thrown well over that. I think we’ve thrown for 800 or 900 yards in two games before. It’s been done before."
Q: Isn’t it something you and Sean Payton talk about?
Brees: "I thought you were giving us a hard time for not running it enough? You guys are changing your tune a little bit these last two games. We’ll do what it takes to win. Just we got down there against Green Bay, got close and put Deuce (McAllister) in the game, get him the touchdown, he breaks the record, that means a lot to him, this organization, this town, this team. What that record would mean to everybody, it’s something we could all share in. If it doesn’t happen, we’d be a little disappointed, because you get so close and so if it doesn’t happen, I guess it wasn’t meant to be. I’m trying not to think about it and you guys are making it awfully hard."
Q: Being the second time you’ve threatened that record and haven’t made the playoffs, does it become a conclusion that the offense has to get together to see if something’s missing?
Brees: "If you look at the season and as many close games as we’ve had even with the first game of the season with Tampa and other close games such as Washington, Denver, Tampa, Atlanta, Chicago, you’re talking seven or eight games that came down to the last drive in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately we were able to win only two of those close games, where if we could have won half of them, we’re sitting here at 9-5 and very much talking about the playoffs. It was a similar situation last year. I think that’s just kind of how it was in this league. All those teams right now fighting for playoff spots, won half of those and are having success. We’re going to plug away like usual."
Q: Do you think there’s a lot of pressure on the Saints this week to not be the team to lose to the Lions?
Brees: "We’re not looking at it like that. We’re not going out there saying let’s do what it takes to not lose this game. I think that’s absolutely the wrong attitude, even though that’s what people want to talk about and inevitably for these guys, they’re trying to get that first win. We have to be the team that goes up there and fight it out with them. We’re not looking at it like that."