With 3326 passing yards through ten games, Saints quarterback Drew Brees remains on pace to obliterate the single-season yardage record, set 27 years ago by Dan Marino.
Marino threw for 5,084. Brees is on track for 5,321.
But Brees says he’s not thinking about it, in part because he chased that record (and nearly broke it) three years ago, when he finished with 5,069.
“I feel very different this year than I did back in 2008 in regards to this Marino thing,” Brees said Wednesday, in comments distributed by the team. “I think back in ’08, maybe because it was the first time that any of us had really been close to that record in a long time. As I recall, Kurt Warner was on pace at one point. Back in ’08, it seemed like every week it was a topic of discussion. That was the first time I had been a part of anything like that. For me, I tried not to make it stressful but it was hard not to think about it because people would always talk about it especially when we got down to the final two games where we had to average almost 380 [yards] a game in order to get to the record and we almost did it. Maybe because I have been through that before, I am really not thinking about it or letting it creep into my mind all that often.”
Brees said that, with winning the only concern, he doesn’t keep track of his passing stats. “I am just so focused on winning games and doing whatever it takes to win the game,” Brees said. “Even this game against Atlanta, when somebody said I had thrown for 322 yards I was shocked. I didn’t feel like it was that kind of a game. It didn’t feel to me like a game that we were throwing it a lot and weren’t running it a lot but when you look at the stat book at the end of the game that is the way it turned out. . . .
“I think the way this season started, there were like six guys on pace to break Marino’s record after the first four or five games. It seemed like this one of those crazy years where teams are throwing it a lot. I think as the year goes on situations changes. Some people stay on pace and others don’t. I really haven’t given it a lot of thought other doing whatever it takes to win.”
Though Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has fewer yards that Brees (3,032), Brady has played one less game. And Brady currently is on pace for 5,390.
So if those patterns hold, Brees will indeed break Marino’s record. But Brady, not Brees, will hold the record going forward.