Keith Kirkwood tells other undrafted players to “keep pushing”

AP

When the Saints played the Eagles in Week 11, quarterback Drew Brees told the team’s younger receivers they had to step up because Michael Thomas and Alvin Kamara were being doubled by the Philadelphia defense.

Rookie Tre'Quan Smith did exactly that, but hurt his foot and wound up inactive against the Falcons on Thursday. That meant Brees had to look elsewhere and, as with most things for the Saints this season, it turned out just fine.

Brees threw touchdown passes to Dan Arnold, Tommylee Lewis, Austin Carr and Keith Kirkwood. It was the first or second NFL touchdown catch for each player and the first time in the Super Bowl era that four undrafted players caught touchdowns for one team in the same game.

Kirkwood, who moved up from the practice squad a couple of weeks ago, said other undrafted players should take inspiration from Thursday’s results.

“To all those young guys that are out there who don’t get drafted, and who don’t get that call on draft day, just keep going. Keep pushing because your opportunity is going to come, and it’s [what] you do with it,” Kirkwood said, via ESPN.com. “Are you going to take advantage of it, or are you going to fold? You see a true testament to this organization, to this team of how undrafted players make a name for themselves here, so I think it definitely showed today.”

Brees has now thrown 29 touchdown passes to 13 different players this season. That ability to make plays with anyone who is on hand is a big reason why the Saints are 10-1 and Brees is an MVP favorite.

3 responses to “Keith Kirkwood tells other undrafted players to “keep pushing”

  1. didn’t even need Brandon Marshall who was inactive. I guess Coach went with players who knew the offense.

  2. No doubt there will be some who say Brees can’t be an MVP if he only throws for 171 yards. Those are the people who confuse Offensive Player of the Year with MVP and only look at stats and not the actual game. This was an off night for Brees – only 68%, under 200 yards and a pick (that should have been PI) – yet it was was a clear affirmation that he is playing at an MVP level.

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