Sunday night was a big night for Who Dat nation. Drew Brees broke Johnny Unitas 52-year-old record of 47 games with a touchdown pass. Drew Brees threw the 40-yard touchdown pass to Devery Henderson making it his 48 straight game with a touchdown pass. Want to know what makes that touchdown pass even more special? Devery Henderson wears the #19 jersey. You know who else used to wear that number jersey? Johnny Unitas. That could not be more of a fairytale touchdown if we tried. It doesn’t hurt that the Saints beat the San Diego Chargers 31-24 to get the Saints their first win of the season.
To make that victory even sweeter, Saints coach Sean Payton was in attendance along with Joe Vitt and general manager Mickey Loomis. The NFL allowed them to attend Sunday nights game in order to see the record breaking play. For those that saw the game on NBC, you saw a lot of Sean Payton cheering on the team that he has helped build for the last six years. For those that were in attendance in the Super Dome, you didn’t see Sean Payton at all. The NFL requested that the Saints not show Sean Payton on the Jumbo Tron during the game. Why would the NFL implement this rule? Your guess is as good as mine. I would think that Brees would have wanted to see his coach’s reaction to his record setting touchdown, but the NFL had a different view.
Lets take a quick history lesson. The 2001 NFL draft, the San Diego Chargers had the first overall pick but traded it to the Atlanta Falcons for the fifth overall pick, the Falcons got Michael Vick with the first overall pick. The Chargers used their first pick to get LaDainian Tomlinson. No other QB got selected in the first round. The Chargers had the first pick in the second round, this time they got Purdue QB Drew Brees. In his five years with the Chargers, Brees was far from a future HOF quarterback. He was in and out of quarterback competitions with Doug Flutie, hindsight is 20/20 Chargers, and then in 2003 the San Diego Chargers acquired NC State QB Phillip Rivers, marking the future end of Brees career as a Charger. However, Brees remained a Charger during the 2004 and 2005 season. During the last game of the 2005 season Brees tore his labrum in his right throwing shoulder and this is when the skepticism begins. After Brees underwent surgery to fix his shoulder, sources started coming out saying that he had additional rotator cuff damage and would need more treatment in order to fully recover muscle movement. Brees went into free agency fresh off of the surgery leading to a lot of uncertainty of whether his shoulder was capable of meeting up to expectations. He met with two teams, the New Orleans Saints and the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins decided to go a different way and sign Minnesota Vikings QB Daunte Culpepper instead. On March 14,2006 Brees signed a 6-year $60 million contract with the Saints. The rest is history.
In a night full of emotions for Who Dat nation, it’s always nice to reflect on where Brees has been and what he’s gone through. I’m sorry Chargers and Dolphins fans but you gave up on a future Hall of Fame QB and a great guy. No matter what team you root for, you can’t help but feel happy for Brees, the Saints, and Who Dat nation.
Now that Brees broke the record, let’s see how long he can keep this streak going. The Saints have a bye week this week so we will just have to wait until week 7 to see if he can keep the touchdowns rolling.