New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees turns 42 on Friday, January 15. Given all that he has done for his team, it would stand to reason that head coach Sean Payton would have a special gift prepared for him.
This week, during a session with the media, Payton was asked point blank whether he had anything unique planned for his star quarterback.
“Just a good red zone plan,” he told Luke Johnson of the New Orleans Advocate.
What is Sean Payton going to give Drew Brees for his 42nd birthday Friday?
“Just a good red zone plan.”
— Luke Johnson (@ByLukeJohnson) January 13, 2021
Jokes not withstanding, the Saints have a much bigger item on their minds than Brees’ birthday – defeating Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in their NFC Divisional Round match-up.
This past Saturday, Brady made a Washington Football Team player’s dream come true after destroying him, but now he is fully focused on advancing in the playoffs.
Similarly, last week Brees went 28-of-39 for 265 yards and a pair of scores in a win against the Chicago Bears. Sure, the refs helped a bit — but Brees was great in the outing even despite that. He will need to do even better to beat Tampa Bay for the third time this year.
Dating back to the NFL-AFL merger in 1970, eight of the 22 teams that twice lost to an opponent in the regular season have defeated that same opponent in the postseason.
In the first game between these two teams, Bucs quarterback Tom Brady threw for 239 yards, two touchdowns and two picks. He also fumbled the ball away once — prompting his own coach to call him out. In the rematch, he threw three interceptions, got sacked three times and hit six times.
Nobody was happier about Alabama’s championship win. https://t.co/ix1ajw8ZbX
— Game 7 (@game7__) January 12, 2021
Defensively, the Saints have consistently delivered against Tampa Bay – meaning the onus will be on Brees and Payton to do their jobs offensively.
Will they be able to get it done? We’ll find out once and for all this weekend.
A good red zone plan is obviously nice. But you know what quarterbacks really like for their 42nd birthdays? Super Bowl rings.