Classy Drew Brees Breaks 27-Year-Old Record In An Unclassy Way?
Last night in New Orleans, Saints Quarterback Drew Brees broke Dan Marino's 27-year-old record to become the NFL's all time single season passing leader. Marino finished the 1984 season with 5,084 passing yards and Brees finished last night with 5,087 yards to break the record. What is being called into question is not the fact that he set the record, but rather how he set the record by running up the score on the Atlanta Falcons.
The Saints were already up 38-16 with 5:08 remaining in the game and had the ball on the Falcon's 33-yard line with the game firmly in hand. Rather than call running plays to run out the clock, Saints Head Coach Sean Payton opted to pass the ball so Brees could secure the record.
Brees only needed 30 yards to break the record, but with time running out and the ball on the 33, the only option for Brees was a pass to near, if not in the end zone. Brees hit Darren Sproles at the one yard line who stepped into the end zone for a touchdown and the record for Brees.
Payton said after the game that normally he would not pass in that situation, but felt getting Brees the record was the right thing to do. The Falcons players were not too upset in fact, linebacker Sean Weatherspoon, when asked if they felt slighted said, "No man, it's our job to stop them." Weatherspoon missed the tackle on Sproles thus, allowing him to step in the end zone for the score and the record.