Jameis Winston was already an established quarterback in the NFL before arriving in New Orleans. He's currently top 20 among active quarterbacks in yards and touchdowns.
But instead of chasing another starting opportunity in 2020, he decided instead to backup Saints quarterback Drew Brees.
Winston spent a year learning from the future hall of famer, who he's looked up to since he was a kid. In Brees' final game versus the Bucs, he and Winston shared a moment on the sideline that was seen by the national TV broadcast. The gravity of the moment still weighs heavily on Winston.
“Well, that moment, to me was like… being able to have an entire season with Drew Brees was a dream of mine," an emotional Winston said. "For him to put his arm around me, just give me any encouraging words after I saw the resilience, the passion, the way that he went and approached every single day. But for that to even be a story, I was touched by that, because he doesn't even know how much he means to me and my family, for real."
"I'm not going to share what he shared with me. I don't even remember, but it touched me. Having a chance to play in the playoffs, after winning a playoff game, like getting the chance to throw a touchdown in the playoffs. I love football. That's all I’ve done my entire life and someone that I look up to, that I admire, that I could actually touch, (who) was my teammate and I had a chance to serve him. I'm speechless."
"That really gets me emotional, because I really love Drew Brees. I don't think he understands. I know my wife does. I know my family does, but you don't understand the impact that him and a lot of other quarterbacks had on me as a quarterback growing up in Bessemer, Alabama. A lot of people don't understand the human aspect to an athlete. But Nah, man, I just know I love Drew Brees for real, I really do. And I was just happy that I was able to witness what he did and how he persevered last year.”
Winston re-signed with the Saints last week on a 1-year, $12 million deal. He's expected to compete with Taysom Hill for the starting quarterback job in 2021.
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