Drew Brees and his wife, Brittany, hugged on the field of the Superdome late Sunday.
The New Orleans Saints, Brees’ long-time team, had just dropped a tough playoff game to Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The score was 30-20.
Give a quick glance at the video from a New Orleans TV station. We’ll tell you why the hug between a quarterback and his wife commemorated more than just the end of a bizarre, pandemic kind of NFL season.
Will Drew Brees retire? It’s Biggest Question In NFL
Why was this emotional hug so important? It probably was the last time Drew Brees will be at the Superdome as the starting quarterback for the Saints.
According to media reports, Brees and his wife, along with the couple’s four children, lingered for about two hours at the stadium after the loss to the Bucs.
Drew Brees, the Austin native, made no official announcement about his future in post-game interviews. But Brees turned 42 this past Friday. If he hasn’t made a final decision, any quarterback at that age gives it a ton of thought.
“I’m gonna give myself an opportunity to think about the season,” Brees told reporters. “Think about a lot of things, just like I did last year, and make a decision,”
Quarterbacks, like coaches, never want to end their careers on a loss. Or in Brees’ case, after a difficult performance. Drew Brees threw three interceptions in the loss to Tampa. His passing total also was sub-par – 139 yards and a touchdown.
Brees said how he played Sunday night would have no bearing on his decision. Then he declined to say what would factor him coming back for another year or retiring to more private life.
Long-time Saints QB Almost Quit After 2019
Drew Brees almost retired this time a year ago. But he wanted another shot at taking the Saints to the Super Bowl. But this year was particularly painful. He missed four games because of a punctured lung and 11 broken ribs.
Drew Brees said: “No complaints. No regrets. Man, I’ve always tried to play this game with a great respect and a great reverence for it. And I appreciate all that this game has given to me.
“There are obviously so many incredible memories, so many incredible relationships that have come as a result of playing this game. And, man, you find out so much about yourself and you have to fight through so much when you play this game.
He certainly sounded like a player who may be thinking most about giving up football and spending more time with his wife and kids.
Brees and Tampa quarterback Tom Brady, 43, hugged, then chatted at mid-field. Brady even threw a pass to one of Brees’ kids. The Tampa quarterback didn’t have a great game, either. Brady threw for only 199 yards and a couple of touchdowns. He and the Bucs will play Green Bay, Sunday, for a spot in the Super Bowl.
Brady didn’t offer any predictions on Brees.
“I’ll leave that up to him to think about that but I think so much of him as a player, person everything. I know him pretty well and he’s an incredible player and competitor,” Brady told FOX Sports.
But that hug shared between Drew and Brittany Brees, between husband and wife, offered the best sort of hint as to the future.