Drew Brees is a sure-fire future first ballot Hall of Famer. The New Orleans Saints have been graced with his presence since 2006, and haven’t looked back at quarterback since. But while Brees is in the decline of his career, he’s still playing at an elite level. It would come as a surprise to many, though, that the New Orleans Saints were ranked with the best quarterback situation in the NFL by Bleacher Report:
Starter: Drew Brees
Backups: Taysom Hill, Teddy Bridgewater, J.T. Barrett
The New Orleans Saints have the best quarterback situation in the league. No, Brees isn’t more accomplished than Brady, but he is performing at a high level late in his career. The 40-year-old set records with a 72.0 and 74.4 percent completion rate in 2017 and 2018, respectively. Last season, he finished with the second-highest QBR (81.9).
Brees displays consistency in his play during the postseason, too, recording a total of 33 touchdowns to 11 interceptions while completing 66.3 percent of his passes. The 12-time Pro Bowler added a Super Bowl MVP award to his resume during the 2009 campaign.
Based on recent performances, Brady and Brees are two of the top signal-callers in the league, but the Saints have a better overall group. Bridgewater had two years of solid starting experience with the Vikings, and he earned a Pro Bowl invite in 2015. Just five years into his career, the 26-year-old still has room to develop.
The Saints are the only team with a third-string quarterback who has been contributing in a variety of ways. The coaching staff uses Hill as a ball-carrier, receiver and special teamer. During the regular season, he ran the ball 37 times for 196 yards and two scores and returned 14 kicks for 348 yards. He also caught a touchdown pass in the NFC Championship Game.
New Orleans isn’t just equipped to keep the passing offense going if Brees misses time; their No. 3 quarterback can actually affect multiple phases of the game on a weekly basis.
As you can see, it’s not necessarily on the back of Brees that the Saints ride to the top of the QB rankings. In large part it’s due to what is behind and with Brees at quarterback.
Behind Brees is a Pro Bowler in Teddy Bridgewater, who the Saints have under contract for just the 2019 season, but could - at minimum - franchise tag him in 2020 if they want to keep him around without Bridgewater agreeing to an extension.
With Brees the Saints have Taysom Hill, Sean Payton’s swiss army knife of a player, who lined up in 2018 as a quarterback, tight end, wide receiver, running back, kick returner, and gunner. In fact, the Saints actually rolled out one play last year where the Saints had all three quarterbacks take the field at one time, with Taysom under center and Bridgewater and Brees each lined out wide on either end. Nothing came of that play, but don’t be shocked if you see Payton continue to mix it up at QB in 2019.