Drew Brees is a smart guy who knows the numbers. Heck, he’s probably been told about them for most of the year. Lately, teams that win the Super Bowl have struggled to even make the playoffs in the following year. With that in mind, you can tell that he’s a little bit torn when it comes to the fact that the New Orleans Saints did make it back this year, but lost in one of the biggest upsets in the NFL playoffs in recent memory. On the one hand, they at least made it back in, but they came up short of repeating and got a little egg on their face doing it. Still, Brees says the season was not a failure. And, given some of the failures we saw throughout the league this year — ahem, Bengals or 49ers, etc. — I suppose I probably agree.
Drew Brees joined XX Sports Radio in San Diego with Scott and BR to discuss the Saints loss at Seattle, who was to blame for it, how he’ll view this season going forward, what happens to his marketing value now that the luster of his Super Bowl win has worn off a bit and who he thinks will be in the Super Bowl.
How the Saints wound up losing to 7-9 Seattle:
“They played great. First of all, they play well at home. As you look at their track record over the last five years, really, they’ve played very well at home. I think they’re 5-1 in the playoffs at home. They just made a ton of plays and it seemed like every time they needed a play, they made one.”
Where to place the blame for the loss:
“Something that Sean Payton has kind of taught me along the way here is that there’s time where you lose 13-10 and it’s the defense’s fault for not finding a way to keep them under 10 points. And then there’s times where you lose 41-36 and it was the offense’s fault because you’ve got to find a way to score more points than them. Seriously, we had our opportunities.”
On how he’ll view this season:
“I wouldn’t say failure. We’re all very disappointed because we all feel like we had as good a shot as anybody. More so it’s just the opportunity to go back and repeat a championship, with all the odds that are against you and everything that we had to endure this season and just the mental toughness it takes The expectation level has definitely increased … but I wouldn’t say that this season is a failure because look at the last 10 teams that have won Super Bowls. Half of them haven’t even gone back to the playoffs the next year.”
If he still has the marketing cache now that he’s a year removed from the Super Bowl:
“I think and I hope that my reputation far exceeds just one accomplishment, which would just be a Super Bowl championship. I would hope that I’ve built up enough of a reputation that people know the type of person I am, the type of family guy that I am. If people can recognize you and identify with you and they feel like you representing a certain brand would be appealing. I hope that’s the case.”
Who he likes coming out of the NFC now:
“I think the big matchup, as I look at it this weekend, is Green Bay and Atlanta. Obviously Atlanta, being in our division, the one seed, they’re a great team. They have the ability to play very, very well, especially at home. Green Bay, though, is rolling. As the six seed, I think they have a little chip on their shoulder … but they seem to be battle-tested. … If there’s a team that can go in and upset Atlanta, it’s Green Bay. … If Seattle can play like they did against us, they’re going to the Super Bowl. On the AFC side, it’s hard to imagine anyone going in and beating New England. If I were to kind of venture a guess, I’d say Atlanta or Green Bay at the NFC side and probably New England on the AFC side.”