Drew Brees vs. Tom Brady. This one’s quite simple. You’ve got the league’s two passing leaders in terms of yardage. Both are Super Bowl champions on perennial Super Bowl contenders. But as of late, both have had their struggles, especially when it comes to interceptions. Brees has 11 interceptions in 10 games, while Brady has thrown 10 picks in eight.
This year, their numbers are crazy close. Brady’s got a longer history and more accolades, but Brees is two years his junior.
Who would you rather have on your team?
Experience: 11th season
Career stats: 147 starts, 65.6%, 258 TD, 143 INT, 38,592 YDS (263 YDS/GM), 7.4 AVG, 92.5 rating
From the start of 2010: 26 starts, 69.2%, 56 TD, 33 INT, 7,946 YDS, 7.4 AVG, 94.9 rating
This season: 10 starts, 70.9%, 23 TD, 19 INT, 3,326 TDS, 7.9 AVG, 101.3 rating
Career win-loss record: 86-61 (.585)
Playoff stats: 7 starts, 66.3%, 15 TD, 2 INT, 293 YDS/GM, 7.2 AVG, 102.0 rating
Playoff win-loss record: 4-3 (1 Super Bowl victory)
Accolades: 3-time All-Pro, 1-time offensive player of the year, 1-time Super Bowl MVP
Experience: 12th season
Career stats: 152 starts, 63.8%, 284 TD, 113 INT, 37,776 YDS (249 YDS/GM), 7.5 AVG, 95.7 rating
From the start of 2010: 25 starts, 66.0%, 59 TD, 14 INT, 6,932 YDS, 8.1 AVG, 107.2 rating
This season: 9 starts, 66.1%, 23 TD, 10 INT, 3,032 YDS, 8.4 AVG, 102.0 rating
Career win-loss record: 117-35 (.770)
Playoff stats: 19 starts, 62.2%, 30 TD, 16 INT, 232 YDS/GM, 6.5 AVG, 85.7 rating
Playoff win-loss record: 14-5 (3 Super Bowl victories)
Accolades: 2-time MVP, 2-time All-Pro, 2-time offensive player of the year, 2-time Super Bowl MVP
It’s amazing. Aside from the touchdown-to-interception ratio, Brees has better career numbers than Brady. But of course, that ratio is quite important, and it’s quite a large advantage for Brady. Additionally, Brady has been the hotter and much more accurate quarterback over the last season and a half.
Brees is clearly more of a yardage accumulator, while some might argue that Brady’s has had more fortune on his side. After all, Brady walked into a Bill Belichick dynasty, which explains his ridiculous win-loss percentage and the Super Bowls. Some of that’s on him, but some of it has to do with the teams he’s been on. In six years in New Orleans, Brees’ winning percentage is .629, which closes that gap a little.
Plus, since Brees joined the Saints in 2006, he has a 1-0 edge over Brady in the Super Bowl victories category. And his playoff stats are actually significantly better than Brady’s.
It should be noted that both players have dealt with a significant injury, but since both have bounced back and dominated in the seasons since getting hurt, I don’t think that’s a major factor in the comparison.
Sean Tomlinson’s take: I’ll take Brady by an edge, and it’s always a slight edge in these debates, the kind of edge that wouldn’t even draw blood if it was the edge of a table and you whacked your head off of it. Last year when Brees lost Pierre Thomas and the support of the running game he threw a career-high 22 interceptions. Brady’s on pace for a career-high of his own this year in that area, but his 10 picks look a lot different if we take away his four against Buffalo, which is looking like an anomaly. Brady has done more with less, and he’s rarely received consistent support from the running game.
Gagnon’s take: Aside from his interceptions, the younger Brees puts up bigger numbers than Brady with similar offensive support. Had Brees been in Brady’s spot in 2001, I’m confident that he, too, would have three rings. If I’m starting a new team right now and have the choice, I probably go with Brees.
So, who would you rather?
Last week’s Would You Rather: Adrian Peterson or Matt Forte?