Drew Brees can break Brett Favre’s career completions record in 2017

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When Brett Favre retired after 20 NFL seasons, he owned the career record for completions, with 6,300, a total that looked out of reach for any active player. But the record is now within reach of Saints quarterback Drew Brees, who could break the record this season.

With 5,836 career completions, Brees is behind only Peyton Manning (6,125) and Favre. If Brees completes 465 passes this season, he’ll break Favre’s record. That’s definitely doable for Brees, who completed 471 passes last year.

The 38-year-old Brees also has a good chance of breaking Manning’s records for career yards and touchdowns, although he’ll need two more seasons to do that: He’s 5,829 yards behind Manning and 74 touchdowns behind Manning.

If he has two more good years, then by the time Brees turns 40 he will own all of the major NFL career passing records. For as good as fans know Brees is, he may actually be underrated as one of the all-time greats.

73 responses to “Drew Brees can break Brett Favre’s career completions record in 2017

  1. Horrible team around him year after year and he continues to go for 4000+ yards and 30+ touchdowns…year after year after year.

  2. Favre played a good portion of his career under the pre-Polian rules changes and also played in a very cold weather city and outdoors. It should be no surprise that his records will be broken, but it’s unfair to say that Brees’ career is as good as Favre’s was.

  3. Completion records mean nothing anymore. You can’t touch the receivers, and you can’t even breathe on the QB’s. QB’s routinely throw as many as 60 passes a game now. If they only complete half of them, that’s still 30 of them.

    Drew Brees has been an excellent QB during his career. But he’s never been as good as Brett Favre was in his prime.

  4. Drew Brees has been a HOF lock for some time now, but not sure it’s wise to put him on the short list of all-time QB greats. It’s much easier for NFL passing offenses today, as compared with 20 years ago or more. From restrictions put on defenses, to flimsy player safety rules, everything has been done to help teams throw the football. If Elway, Marino, etc. were playing under today’s rules, there’s no doubt their individual numbers would have increased. And if Brees had to compete when hits weren’t called as much, and defensive backs were allowed more contact with receivers, his numbers would decline.

  5. So…..Aaron Rodgers is NOWHERE close to the top ten all time, and he is always called, “a future hall of famer”.

    Drew Brees is already within the top ten and you can’t even utter the phrase?

    Drew Breez is a first ballot hall of famer. Much more so than Rodgers.

  6. Fact:
    No one will EVER break Favre’s career interception record. It will stand forever. His TD to pick ratio was 3:2

    None of the top passers have gotten close to that bad.

  7. Brees is great, and a HOFer. But to say he is “underrated” actually overrates him, by ignoring the context of his career.

    The vast majority of Brees’s career has come since rule adjustments opened up the passing game; that has helped EVERY QB, and I don’t think we yet realize by how much (for example, Eli Manning’s career totals are quite gaudy, despite his limitations). The Rivers/Eli/Roethlisberger trio is the next that will pop some eyes given that they have played almost entirely in the “passing” NFL, and it will only get more extreme from there (e.g. Matthew Stafford).

    Brees has now spent more than a decade with the Saints, meaning on turf, indoors, and playing in the system of a coach that helps increase QB numbers. The team also has had no issue with Brees airing it out constantly, even in blowouts.

    So while the totals are impressive, they are as much as testament to health and help as they are to Brees. Plus, QB TOTALS are far, far less important than QB QUALITY. The latter is the way to judge a QB, and by that measure Brees is quite efficient despite the high volume and is just a bit too turnover and bad-stretch prone to be at the Rodgers/Brady level. That’s where he belongs, and where he is usually placed. PROPERLY RATED.

  8. granadafan says:
    Jul 3, 2017 11:12 AM
    Favre is also the interception leader. No one will ever break that record.

    -_______________________________________

    Check out his TD to Int ratio and number of passes thrown compared to Int ratio compared to other great QB’s who played and you’ll see the number of int’s he threw is overblown.
    But Favre’s critics always bring that up.

  9. The word “great” is used far too often . I don’ see Brees as great. His stats are great, for the most part. But his interception rate is a fair amount higher than Brady and Rodgers, and he has thrown a lot of interceptions at critical points during games. He also plays in a dome, and his won/lost record on the road is not good. Brady’s won/lost record on the road is the best ever, and his stats on the road are very similar to his home stats, AND he plays outdoors. Rodgers plays outdoors as well. Brees isn’t good enough to carry a team to a title, needs help, while Brady has proven it doesn’t matter who he plays with, he will get you to a SB. Rodgers hasn’t carried a team to a SB, but has carried Packers farther than they should have gone during some seasons. In this era, Brady #1 ( also #1 for ALL eras), Rodgers #2, Peyton #3, Ben #4, Brees #5. Eli, who cares where the turnover machine is ranked

  10. hukdeep says:
    Jul 3, 2017 11:06 AM
    Lots of jealous haters in here.
    Brees = G. O. A. T.

    WHO DAT!

    ___________________________________

    Brees = GOAT = Good Ordinary Active Thrower

  11. Favre is known as great because of longevity. How many interceptions did he throw? Now, how many of those were in big games? Favre, as great as he was, was a turnover machine. Therefore, he isn’t close to being as great as Brees. You’re either blind, stupid, or biased if you think he is. Most likely all three.

  12. How many pro bowl WRs has Brees had? How many has Favre, Manning, Rodgers, and Brady had? Easier to win when you’re throwing to Randy Moss, Driver, Nelson, Harrison, Wayne, and Welker. Yeah, Rodgers does it all himself. Foh with that nonsense.

  13. tylawspick6 says:
    Jul 3, 2017 10:25 AM
    brees is a lot more concerned with
    records than trying to win super bowls

    —-

    That is a ridiculous comment. Brees plays his behind off week after week on what is otherwise a very weak team. Should he then play to the level of his defense, so as to avoid getting a record? Guys a great QB, one of the best in the modern era. Let him get his accolades. He earns them despite the talent that isn’t around him.

    BTW? QBs don’t win SBs. Football Teams do.

  14. The rule change argument against Brees is also bogus. All of those greats you mentioned all played under the same rules as Brees, yet he has better numbers. In most cases, much better numbers.

  15. Brees = GOAT = Good Ordinary Active Thrower

    That’s unbelievably horrible. You’ve had all morning to come up with something good and this is what you type? Go back to the drawing board, or better yet just ban yourself from the comments section.

  16. And to all the Brady lovers – he throws 5 yard dinks to talented receivers that make plays despite his declining ability to make a hard throw. He also plays in the AFC East which is hardly the bastion of talent for the last 30 or so years. Not btw that the NFC South is awesome but at least they have Carolina. And Tampa’s won one in that time too. No one is thinking that of the Jets, Dolphins, or Bills over the same time period.

  17. For as good as fans know Brees is, he may actually be underrated as one of the all-time greats.

    ——

    This might get a lot of downvotes, but it is a factual statement to say that Brees benefitted from being in a dome for 9+ games a year for his career. When I pulled the historical game numbers in 2008, QBs averaged 0.5 TD more and 0.25 INTs less per game by playing on the road and in a dome. If those numbers hold for home and road games, in an 18 year career that’s an extra 80 TDs and 40ish INTs fewer.

    465/220 looks a lot better than 385/260. (yes, I’m aware he played in SD, too, so no I’m not saying those numbers would be his if he played outdoors. Just that domes make real impacts on careers, including Brees.)

    Brees is a great QB, but his aversion to playing in the weather is well documented and he’s earned his ‘lower than numbers would indicate’ rating for good reason.

  18. Oh and for those people bashing the NFCS, yeah the division is sooooo bad that it only represented the NFC in the Super Bowl the last two seasons. If that makes the NFCS a horrible division I would hate to see what that makes the other divisions.

  19. “it’s unfair to say that Brees’ career is as good as Favre’s was.”
    True statement, Brees’ career was/is superior to Favre when you realize Brees isn’t a turnover machine that Favre was in big games; bang, interception game over.

    As a pure QB, great passer, Brees is far superior to Favre and in this era is only exceeded by Brady.

  20. screamingyellowzonkers says:
    Jul 3, 2017 10:58 AM
    So…..Aaron Rodgers is NOWHERE close to the top ten all time, and he is always called, “a future hall of famer”.

    Drew Brees is already within the top ten and you can’t even utter the phrase?

    Drew Breez is a first ballot hall of famer. Much more so than Rodgers.

    ———————————————————————–
    Calm down. Everyone knows Brees is a first ballot HOF lock. You don’t need to try to insult another great QB when this post has nothing to do with him.

  21. “reddzen says: Jul 3, 2017 11:58 AM And to all the Brady lovers – he throws 5 yard dinks to talented receivers that make plays despite his declining ability to make a hard throw.”

    You left out all the Super Bowls he’s won, compared to your team (whichever one that may be).

  22. I see a lot of Brees hate out here. just so we are clear, he is behind only TB12 in career win and losses for active QBs. Also, Manning played almost his entire career in a DOME and we all agree he is an all time great. Also if playing in a dome is so easy how come the Seahawks never won a SB when they played in the Kingdome, or the Texans, Falcons, Vikings, Cardinals, Lions, Cowboys in the last 20 plus years, Colts only have one. What does a Dome have to do with it? Either your good or your not? The Packers, Patriots, and Steelers are good and have been good for years not because they play outside. They are great because they have Hall of Fame players and coaches and front office people. The 49ers used to be good now they stink and they have been playing outside in the weather this whole time. The Bills play in the snow and they suck. When they had Jim Kelly, Thurman Thomas, Bruce Smith and Marv Levy they were really good, those guys left and look what happened, nothing to do with playing outside or inside. Brees is an all time great, first ballot Hall of Fame and maybe the 3rd or 4th best QB of this era. Give the man his due, if it was easy we all would do it.

  23. greenwhodat26 says:
    Jul 3, 2017 11:27 AM
    Favre is known as great because of longevity. How many interceptions did he throw? Now, how many of those were in big games? Favre, as great as he was, was a turnover machine. Therefore, he isn’t close to being as great as Brees. You’re either blind, stupid, or biased if you think he is. Most likely all three.
    ================================
    Favre also was the NFL MVP three times. Drew Brees has never won the award. While number of MVPs doesn’t equate to which quarterback is better, there’s something there. I don’t believe anyone has ever acknowledged Brees as the best quarterback in any given season either. There was never an argument that he was as good as either Brady or Manning at any time. He was always in the next group. The stats guys will always tell you that Manning was better than Tom Brady, but that’s not even a debate.

  24. dwarftosser says:
    Jul 3, 2017 12:18 PM
    screamingyellowzonkers says:
    Jul 3, 2017 10:58 AM
    So…..Aaron Rodgers is NOWHERE close to the top ten all time, and he is always called, “a future hall of famer”.

    Drew Brees is already within the top ten and you can’t even utter the phrase?

    Drew Breez is a first ballot hall of famer. Much more so than Rodgers.

    ———————————————————————–
    Calm down. Everyone knows Brees is a first ballot HOF lock. You don’t need to try to insult another great QB when this post has nothing to do with him.
    —————————————————

    Actually, its not an insult to Rodgers. It’s a statement about NFL media types playing favorites.

  25. I think some folks here have missed that the defenses Brees has had to compliment him have had spans of being abysmal. That means you can’t run the ball and it’s all on the QB to try and get a win. Marino is the only one that had the same issue and Brees would tell you Dan was better than him.

    New England, the Colts/Broncos, and Green Bay have not had several year spans of having such poor defenses (look at special teams for the Saints as well).

    Manning threw a pass to beat Brees’ record by 1 yard and then sat down and is not called a stat padder? Brees and the Saints set many of these records in 2011 against the Falcons so it appears that is why this comes up so much.

    Any of the top 5 QBs could play for each others’ team and be fine.

  26. Brees’ arm is shot at this point. If it wasn’t for the dome and moderate weather for teams in his division, he would have been retired. He is a small framed QB and I think his body has had just about enough punishment.

  27. The man can play bottom line. He has to make tough throws with pinpoint accuracy because he’s had what two, maybe three deep threats to throw to in the last decade. He turns WR3 and WR4 on most teams into 1000 yd receivers with 8-10 tds yearly. Top 5-10 QB all-time is great no matter what generation a player has played in. He’s not the only player to pad stats believe me. I’ve seen Brady, Rodgers, Manning, Elway, Kelly, Marino, and other’s that have done it while being on better all around teams.

  28. To those saying Brees sucked in cold weather and benefitted from a Dome, why not look at his numbers at Purdue…..not exactly in the south or indoors.

  29. Aside from John Elway, I’d choose Brett Favre as my favorite QB’s….I can’t stand fans that choose strictly #’s over everything else. A lot more goes into a QB than stats. Brees is undeniably a great QB, but not in my top 5. He may break Favre’s record but I’d choose Favre because the mfer played 20 seasons and barely missed a game….

  30. Completion records mean nothing anymore. You can’t touch the receivers, and you can’t even breathe on the QB’s. QB’s routinely throw as many as 60 passes a game now. If they only complete half of them, that’s still 30 of them.

    Drew Brees has been an excellent QB during his career. But he’sfted never been as good as Brett Favre was in his prime.
    ———————————————————-Favre was drafted in 1991, and Brees in 2000. What rules were changed in that 9 years to help Brees?

  31. Inflated dome stats vs NFC south defenses. Sux on the road in cold.
    ———————————————————-Brees sucks in cold weather, and if the 2009 NFCC game is an indication, Farve sux in a dome.

  32. Brees has it easy compared to some eras, but let’s not pretend that the Class of ’83 built its legacy in a time when OPI was basically a mythical penalty.

    Jerry Rice didn’t get open just because he outran the corner. Back in the 80s, coverage probably got more flags for breathing on the guy who pushed off.

  33. reddzen says: Jul 3, 2017 11:58 AM And to all the Brady lovers – he throws 5 yard dinks to talented receivers that make plays despite his declining ability to make a hard throw.”

    You left out all the Super Bowls he’s won, compared to your team (whichever one that may be).
    ———————————————————-
    In the 30+ years I have watched football, I have NEVER seen a QB walk on the field and win a game by himself, much less a SB. The PATRIOTS were a better team than the Saints,(and all 30 other teams) the years they won the SB. That does not make Brady a better QB than Brees.
    A QB’s job is to throw the ball (mostly). Brees has more yards and completions and a better completion %, in less games. One could EASILY argue that Brees is as good as Brady, and to say otherwise is pure foolishness.

  34. biggestsaintsfanever says:
    Jul 3, 2017 2:50 PM

    Inflated dome stats vs NFC south defenses. Sux on the road in cold.
    ———————————————————-Brees sucks in cold weather, and if the 2009 NFCC game is an indication, Farve sux in a dome.
    _____________________________________

    That was hilarious. The funny thing is that Favre was dreadful playing outdoors in grass in warm weather. Exhibit A = Tampa Bay.

  35. cheeseisfattening says:
    Jul 3, 2017 12:22 PM
    Drew Brees is so lucky to have played in New Orleans, the Saints fans never turned on him.
    ////////////////////////////////////

    Drew Brees is lucky he never had to play in Minnesota. Favre could very likely still be playing if he hadn’t had his career ended prematurely when he was forced to play behind the softest O-line in the league. He’ll regret joining the Vikings for the rest of his days.

    Oh well…..you reap what you sow.

  36. Brees is a great player but the system he plays in and the era he plays in have definitely inflated his stats. The Saints simply don’t run the ball and since their defense is almost always inept it’s usually a shootout. Anytime a qb approaches 500 completions for a season that’s not a good thing.

  37. philvil41 says:
    Jul 3, 2017 10:54 AM
    If Dan Marino played in this era,no one , and I’ll repeat ,no one ,would come close to the records he would have set.

    ———————————————————————

    Wile I agree with your point, If Johnny Unitas had played under these rules, Marino would be looking up at him, too.

  38. biggestsaintsfanever says:
    Jul 3, 2017 3:15 PM
    reddzen says: Jul 3, 2017 11:58 AM And to all the Brady lovers – he throws 5 yard dinks to talented receivers that make plays despite his declining ability to make a hard throw.”

    You left out all the Super Bowls he’s won, compared to your team (whichever one that may be).
    ———————————————————-
    In the 30+ years I have watched football, I have NEVER seen a QB walk on the field and win a game by himself, much less a SB. The PATRIOTS were a better team than the Saints,(and all 30 other teams) the years they won the SB. That does not make Brady a better QB than Brees.
    A QB’s job is to throw the ball (mostly). Brees has more yards and completions and a better completion %, in less games. One could EASILY argue that Brees is as good as Brady, and to say otherwise is pure foolishness.

    ——————————————————————–

    No one in their right mind would take Brees over Brady.

  39. My point is, these records are fleeting. I have no doubt that Brees will not hold the record long, either.

    And there has been more emphasis every year on not hitting the QB. It’s stressed more now than it was even five years ago.

  40. biggestsaintsfanever says:
    Jul 3, 2017 2:50 PM

    Inflated dome stats vs NFC south defenses. Sux on the road in cold.
    ———————————————————-Brees sucks in cold weather, and if the 2009 NFCC game is an indication, Farve sux in a dome.
    _____________________________________

    That was hilarious. The funny thing is that Favre was dreadful playing outdoors in grass in warm weather. Exhibit A = Tampa Bay.

    _______________________________________

    This is ridiculous. Favre was never dreadful playing anywhere.

  41. lengai says:
    Jul 3, 2017 1:08 PM
    I think some folks here have missed that the defenses Brees has had to compliment him have had spans of being abysmal. That means you can’t run the ball and it’s all on the QB to try and get a win. Marino is the only one that had the same issue and Brees would tell you Dan was better than him.

    New England, the Colts/Broncos, and Green Bay have not had several year spans of having such poor defenses (look at special teams for the Saints as well).

    Manning threw a pass to beat Brees’ record by 1 yard and then sat down and is not called a stat padder? Brees and the Saints set many of these records in 2011 against the Falcons so it appears that is why this comes up so much.

    Any of the top 5 QBs could play for each others’ team and be fine.

    ________________________________________

    Green Bay had some poor defenses during Favre’s time there, too.

  42. I’ve never understood the Brees hate vs the Manning love or people trying to use numbers to quantify what made Favre so great to watch. Manning also played indoors and his contracts as a % of the cap put Brees to shame. No matter what team you cheer for if you saw Favre play in his prime you know why you loved watching him play. Stats and words are never going to translate that into something understandable for anyone that didn’t see it.

    From the cap era if someone were to objectively choose a QB to:
    Light it up with mediocre receivers: Brees.
    Build a franchise around: Rodgers
    Produce Madden like stats & reg season wins: P.Manning
    Put butts in the seats but give a HC ulcers: Favre
    Do all of the above (minus the ulcers) AND produce in the playoffs: Brady

    On any given Sunday any fan of the game would be happy getting to watch any of them play in the out of market game sent to their city. It’s sad so many supposed football fans think greatness is defined by a uniform and not the play of the man wearing it or to build one player up they have to denigrate another one. Whether your individual prejudices can accept it or not every one of those QB’s is a gimme 1st ballot Hall of Famer and so is Ben Roethlisberger.

  43. “Yeah, Rodgers does it all himself. Foh with that nonsense.”

    So how great was Greg Jennings? He was at the top of his game and GB’s top WR when he left for MN.
    While I agree Nelson became better than Jennings, no doubt Jennings would’ve continued to look great had he stayed in GB.

  44. Aren’t stats awesome? Emmitt Smith is the greatest RB. Jerry Rice is the greatest WR. Drew Brees is the best QB (or at least he will be in two years).

  45. Very nice milestones and I’m happy for Brees, but The record I and most Saints fans wished he could have broken is Tom Brady’s record for Super Bowl wins by a QB.

  46. Brees has been really good, but he is for sure behind at least Rodgers, Brady & Peyton Manning in this era. If you are going to justify him being the best using stats, then Rodgers is the best, and easily. Using the key stats of TD%, INT%, Y/A, Rating, Rodgers is ahead of all of these guys in all of those categories.

    TD Pct: AR 6.4, PM 5.7, TB 5.5, DB 5.3
    Int Pct: AR 1.5, TB 1.8, DB 2.5, PM 2.7
    Y/Att: AR 7.9, PM 7.7, TB 7.5, DB 7.5
    Rating: AR 104.1, TB 97.2, PM 96.5, DB 96.3

  47. sb44champs says:
    Jul 4, 2017 11:10 AM
    Brees > Rodgers
    //////////////////////////////

    Ask the players, coaches, and GM’s of the ten bottom-ranked teams. They’d all take Rodgers.

  48. Wow, it turns out Viking fans aren’t the only delusional fans. Brees over Rodgers or Brady? There is no GM on any team that would do that.

  49. stellarperformance says:
    Jul 3, 2017 3:50 PM
    cheeseisfattening says:
    Jul 3, 2017 12:22 PM
    Drew Brees is so lucky to have played in New Orleans, the Saints fans never turned on him.
    ////////////////////////////////////
    Drew Brees is lucky he never had to play in Minnesota. Favre could very likely still be playing if he hadn’t had his career ended prematurely when he was forced to play behind the softest O-line in the league. He’ll regret joining the Vikings for the rest of his days.
    Oh well…..you reap what you
    ——-
    This guy says I’m a stalker when I reply to his comments yet he is just being reactionary when he replies to my comments. Ladies and gentlemen I give you yet another example of Packer fan arrogance

  50. Cheesey is a proactive hater for the sake of hating. I react to him and other haters and post accordingly.

    He thinks it’s the same thing. How convenient for him.

  51. Do it Drew, hope you walk away with all those records. Patriot fans respect you for your guts and clutch play, not to mention exposing the Clots in that Bowl Game.

  52. All I know is from looking at the film last year he appeared to have a hard time passing the long ball. I was looking at his face and body as he released the ball. Payton looked the very same way in his last year. I hope he is okay because they really need him. The saints are NOTHING without BREES.

  53. This would be a hell of an accomplishment but it also important for the Saints to try and pull a winning season.

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