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How have the New Orleans Saints fared since Drew Brees' retirement?

New Orleans Saints Drew Brees and Jameis Winston
New Orleans Saints Drew Brees and Jameis Winston
Adam Hulse

Drew Brees retired from the NFL following the 2020 season. He has been the starting quarterback for the New Orleans Saints since 2006. In his legendary 20 year career, 15 with the Saints, he set multiple passing records, won a Super Bowl and will easily be selected as a first ballot Hall of Famer. Drew Brees has put together one of the best statistical careers of any quarterback in NFL history.

Replacing someone like Drew Brees is nearly impossible. He was way too successful to simply replicate. Instead, the Saints had to choose a new path at quarterback. Rather than trying to transform someone else into Drew Brees, it is much wiser to assess the available options and make a decision on the future direction of the franchise. The Saints chose Jameis Winston.

Is Jameis Winston the right quarterback to lead Saints offense?

Jameis Winston was signed by the New Orleans Saints to be the successor to Drew Brees. The two couldn't really be any different stylistically. Drew Brees is best known for his accuracy, which is one of the very best in NFL history. Jameis Winston has much more of a reputation as a gunslinger-style quarterback. Drew Brees is methodical while Jameis Winston likes to take bigger risks.

Most Games in Career with:300+ Passing Yards,3+ Passing TDs,0 INTs:(in NFL History)1. Drew Brees (39)2. Tom Brady (35)3. Aaron Rodgers (29)4. Peyton Manning (23)5. Ben Roethlisberger (20)6. Kirk Cousins (17)7. Brett Favre (14)8. Philip Rivers (12)

There is not one style that is required to play quarterback in the NFL. There have been many examples of success from a ton of different approaches. Just because Jameis Winston is completely different than Drew Brees doesn't mean he can't be successful. It's important for the Saints to adjust to what Jameis Winston is, rather than trying to make him Drew Brees.

Moving on from Drew Brees

The Saints have one of the best head coaches in the NFL, Sean Payton. He is an offensive genius and widely respected quarterback specialist. He is an extremely creative offensive scheme designer and play caller. He is more than capable of adapting his style to fit the strengths of Jameis Winston, while also coaching him to embrace some of the styles implemented when Drew Brees was the quarterback.

.@Jaboowins threw 4 touchdowns including a career-best 72-yard TD and completed a 48-yard Hail Mary TD pass πŸ™Œ@NFLFilms Shot of the Week πŸŽ₯ @saints Watch more on #InsideTheNFL tonight on @paramountplus. https://t.co/aOWKnpfKdo

The experiment seems to be working so far in New Orleans. The Saints have a solid 3-2 record and Jameis Winston has played well. He is taking less risks than he usually has in the past, limiting mistakes while still driving the ball downfield. This is a project that has a strong chance to continually improve as the year goes on. He's no Drew Brees, but Jameis Winston can be a winner for the Saints.


Also Read: What is Drew Brees’ current contract?


Edited by Henno van Deventer

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