Monday, February 08, 2010

The Castaway Quarterback

In the final game of the 2005 NFL season San Diego Chargers quarterback Drew Brees dislocated his throwing shoulder. Upon further investigation it was revealed that Brees had torn the labrum of his throwing shoulder and the Chargers decided that they no longer needed his services. A year earlier, San Diego had acquired Philip Rivers from the New York Giants in a draft day trade and they felt confident that he was their future quarterback. Drew Brees was left looking for a job.

Brees visited New Orleans with his wife Brittany after Hurricane Katrina waters covered 85% of the city. After Katrina slammed into New Orleans in August 2005, the Saints determined that they would help pull their city out of the destruction of the hurricane. "We're going to rebuild together," they agreed. The Saints were once renamed the Aints by their fans as a way to express their frustration with the losing ways of their team. In 42 seasons the Saints only had a winning record in 8 of them. Brees agreed that he wanted to be a part of both rebuilding projects - the City of New Orleans and the Saints.

He joined the New Orleans Saints in 2006 and now he's a Super Bowl MVP. The castaway quarterback threw a Super Bowl record-tying 32 pass completions out of 39 attempts for 288 yards and two touchdowns. He was 16 out of 17 passes in the second half.

Now the Saints have their first Super Bowl championship after 42 years of franchise futility. The castaway quarterback held the Vince Lombardy Trophy aloft as he choked back tears. Brees said, "We had a whole city and maybe a whole country behind us. There was a feeling it was all meant to be. It's destiny."

It sure is and New Orleans and the Saints have largely a castaway quarterback to thank.