New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees has reached yet another significant career milestone. The 37-year-old passed Dan Marino on the all-time passing yards list on Sunday against the New York Giants. Brees entered Week 2 needing 36 yards to pass Marino's mark of 61,361 yards.
Brees and the Saints got out to a slow start against the New York Giants, with Brees needing four drives to actually reach 36 yards, but he did it. The pass that put him over was an 8-yard pass to tight end Coby Fleener.
Brees believes he can play for a few more years in the league and if that turns out to be the case, he could wind up ending his career with more yards than any other quarterback. By passing Marino, Brees moved into third all-time in NFL history. He is still quite far from Brett Favre (71,838) in second and Peyton Manning (71,940) in first. Brees started off his 16th season in the league on a heater, torching the Oakland Raiders for 423 yards and four touchdowns in a 35-34 loss.
But Brees has eclipsed 5,000 yards in a season four times in his career, and has put up at least 4,800 yards twice more on top of that. He only needs to go for a couple more seasons to pass both Favre and Manning to finish at the top of the NFL, but of course, a lot can happen to an aging quarterback in that time.
Brees signed a contract extension with the Saints that included $44 million in guarantees prior to the regular season opener. It will only keep him with the team through 2017 but strictly speaking, those two years at his normal rate put him right in the range of Favre and Manning.
A Super Bowl-winning quarterback, Brees has been named to nine Pro Bowls and has been an All-Pro player four times, three of them on the first team. He has been named the NFL Offensive Player of the Year twice and has been the league's passing yardage leader six times and passing touchdowns leader four times.