Tom Brady v Drew Brees is a rivalry for the ages but it’s the New Orleans Saints QB who has his tail up
In sport, there are always meetings of greats. In Spain, we had the almost tri-annual meetings of Messi and Ronaldo; in boxing, three classic bouts between Ali and Frazier in the 1970s; and in the NFL we have Tom Brady and Drew Brees.
This week’s Saints vs Buccaneers match up was a repeat of the week one battle that New Orleans won, but since then Brady has found his feet in the Tampa Bay offense, an offense that looked particularly potent. Note the use of past tense.
In the game this week the Saints, destroyed the Buccaneers machine, in a 38-3 win that kept the Bucs offense on a duck egg until the fourth quarter when they allowed a loan field goal.
Despite the heavy loss, these two quarterbacks will be held in close esteem forever, and rightfully so.
This week Brees took the lead back from Brady on the all-time passing touchdown leaderboard. After his four-touchdown performance against the Bucs, Brees now sits on 564, while Tom is three behind.
It doesn’t end there. If you look at passing yards and completions, the same two names appear in the first and second spot, with Brees leading in each, although he has spent the majority of his career in more passer friendly schemes.
In the NFL head to head, Brees also has the edge as he leads the series 5-2, but Brady took the loan college matchup between the pair in 1999, and of course, Brady leads in Super Bowl counts with a massive six to Brees’ solitary title.
But with Brady contracted to another year in Tampa, and Brees, like Brady, still playing at a high level past the age of 40 there should be more battles to come.
Either way, Sunday night was a meeting between two of the greatest ever to play the game. Both are setting records that may never be beaten.
Are these two quarterbacks in their prime? No. But are they two of the greatest to ever play the game? Of course, and while New Orleans did achieve a huge win this week, I look forward to these two greats meeting once again, hopefully in the postseason.
Around the rest of the league, the Buffalo Bills pulled off a huge 44-34 win against the Seattle Seahawks who, despite Russel Wilson’s charge for MVP, have an uncharacteristically leaky defense.
Undefeated Pittsburgh managed an eighth straight win against a much improved Dallas. The game finished 24-19 but the Cowboys led until late, even having a chance to win it as they heaved the ball into the endzone on the last play.
Atlanta Falcons improved to 3-6 after they beat the Denver Broncos 34-27 in a game that should never have been close. The Falcons, who have already lost big leads this season led 34-13 early in the fourth quarter.
Baltimore Ravens relied on a second-half defensive shut out to put the Colts to the sword while the New York Giants managed a huge divisional win of Washington. While the Giants won the game, the story will be the return of Alex Smith after a season-ending injury for Kyle Allen, almost two years to the day the same thing happened to Smith.
The Kansas City Chiefs had a much more challenging match than the pre-game records showed as they hosted the Carolina Panthers. The Chiefs eked out a win as the Panthers missed a last-minute field goal.
For the second week in a row, the Miami Dolphins took on an NFC West opponent and came out victorious. The Dolphins managed to coral Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray just enough to sneak a 34-30 win.
In the AFC West, the Chargers hosted the Raiders in a game that came down to the last play. The Chargers thought they had the win, but when the referees reviewed the play, they could see the ball come loose just before the receiver hit the floor.
There was also a win for the Texans as they overcame a spirited Jaguars team that started sixth-round Rookie quarterback Jake Luton.
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