Drew Brees was planning to return to the field sooner than the initial timeline from the get-go. Brees went down with a thumb injury against the Los Angeles Rams in Week 2, and he was projected to miss 6-8 weeks. The future Hall-of-Famer returned to the line-up after missing just five games.
“It was good to get back out there. It felt like it had been forever,” Brees told Zach Strief, the Voice of the Saints. “I felt like last week that this would be the week. And even before, right when I got hurt, I started looking at the calendar; and they’re telling me eight weeks is safe. I’m like ‘ehh, I don’t like that answer. I’m going to see if we can fast track this thing and set a different benchmark.”
And Brees had an impressive return. He threw 43 passes, completing 79.1% of them for 373 yards with 3 touchdowns and 1 interception. The Arizona Cardinals had one of the top pass rushes in the NFL coming into the game, while they did not register a sack, they did hit Brees several times. Was he worried about taking his real hit after the injury?
“Honestly, I didn’t think about at all,” Brees said. “The one thing you can’t simulate in practice is you hitting your thumb on something. It’s not like you’re going to tell somebody to bang my thumb real hard right now and see what happens. So you’re kind of waiting for that first one in the game.”
Brees looked like his usual self, distributing the ball to nine different players. Wide receiver Michael Thomas once again proved to be a reliable target. Thomas caught all 11 of the passes thrown his way, racking up 112 yards and 1 touchdown in the process.
“You just can’t say enough great things about Mike and his dependability and his confidence level,” Brees gushed. “When you know that you need a play, you have Mike Thomas on your team.”
The Saints have their bye this week before suiting up against the Atlanta Falcons on November 10th.