Drew Brees’ retirement talk isn’t idle chatter
Saints quarterback Drew Brees will return to the team for a 15th season or retire. Whatever he ultimately does, this isn’t an effort to generate attention or spark discussion. Brees, unlike plenty of other quarterbacks who from time to time have talked openly about retirement with no real intention of ever doing so, is and will be genuinely and seriously considering retirement.
As one source explained it to PFT, the Saints wants Brees back for what would essentially become a transition year, from Brees to Taysom Hill with Hill becoming the starter in 2021. Even if Brees comes back, Hill will be used much more extensively as part of the team’s offense in 2020 -- especially in light of some private regret that, if Hill had been utilized just a little bit more in the wild-card loss to the Vikings, the Saints quite likely would have won the game.
Brees has said he’ll take a month or so to make a decision, and it should surprise no one if Brees decides to walk away. Whatever he does, the Saints will need a plan for keeping Hill, a restricted free agent who could generate plenty of interest if available to be signed to an offer sheet, even with a first-round pick as compensation.
Still capable of playing at a very high level, Brees’ had a career-high passer rating in 2019 of 116.3. In what would be his final regular-season home game if he retires, Brees had a night for the ages against the Colts last month, completing 29 of 30 passes and breaking the career touchdown-pass record.