Drew Brees is drawing immense scrutiny for the Saints' slow start on offense. Many are wondering if the 41-year-old quarterback has regressed.
Brees scoffs at that.
"I feel good, borderline great," he said during a weekly media conference Wednesday.
On the surface Brees's numbers won't sound the alarms. He's completed nearly 65 percent of his passes for nearly 500 yards, three touchdowns and an interception. In a vacuum there are a lot of teams who would take that tomorrow. Add context and the lines are blurry.
The eye test hasn't favored the veteran. His third quarter miss of a wide-open Josh Hill Monday exemplified that Brees's accuracy isn't there right now. If the season ended today, his 64.7 completion percentage would be the worst of his career since 2012 and the third worst since joining the black and gold in 2006.
Then there are the advanced metrics. Brees's 4.0 air yards/completion ranks last in the NFL. The same goes for nearly every metric tied to air yards, which are defined as the yards the ball travels in the air before arriving at the attempted receiver. Of Brees's three touchdowns this year, only his six yard strike to Jared Cook Monday crossed the line of scrimmage in the air.
"One of the statistics that was thrown out after the game was 'yards-per-attempt' or something," Brees said. "There are many statistics I do not pay one bit of attention to, and that would be one of them. At the end of the day I am focused on putting us in position to succeed."
The 1-1 Saints host Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers Sunday night. It's the second time in three the Saints have faced an elite passer.
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