Andrew Christopher "Drew" Brees was born January 15, 1979. He was named after Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Drew Pearson.
Brees came from good genes, as his parents were highly accomplished athletes. His father played basketball for the Texas A&M Aggies and his mother was a former all-state athlete in three sports in high school. His uncle, Marty Akins, was an All-American starting quarterback for the Texas Longhorns from 1975 to 1977, and his grandfather, Ray Akins, had the third-most victories as a Texas high school football coach, according to Wikipedia. Sports were in Brees' blood from an early age.
He didn't play tackle football however until high school. But Brees would become a Texas football legend. In his two seasons starting at Westlake High School, Brees completed 314 of 490 passes for 5,461 yards with 50 touchdowns, leading the school to a 28-0-1 record, including a 16-0 mark and a state championship in his senior year. Brees played at the same time and in the same state as eventual teammate, LaDanian Tomlinson.
Brees chose to go to the University of Purdue for college, where all he'd do is set the Big Ten Conference records in passing yards with 11,792, touchdowns with 90, total offensive yards with 12,693, completions (1,026), and attempts (1,678). He would tie an NCAA record for longest TD pass of 99-yards, and even throw 83 times in one game. His last-minute win over Ohio State is still featured on ESPN Classic. Check out his highlights while at Purdue:
Despite his accomplishments, Brees would slip in the draft, falling to the San Diego Chargers with the first pick in the second round. Brees was the second quarterback taken behind Virginia Tech's star Michael Vick. Brees would prove all his doubters wrong in the NFL, teaming up with Tomlinson in San Diego to make a potent offense. He would play with San Diego from 2001-2006, when he couldn't agree to a contract with the team. That's when the New Orleans Saints got their hands on Brees and haven't let go after he signed a 6-year, $60 million contract.
Brees' list of accomplishments is too extensive to fully list. But some of the highlights include 2-time NFL MVP, 9-time Pro Bowler, Super Bowl MVP. His records include highest completion percentage ever, most 5,000 yard seasons with 4, fastest NFL player ever to 50,000 yards, and most consecutive games with a TD pass at 54.
The crowning moment of his career came in the 2009 season when he led the Saints to the franchise's first Super Bowl title, defeating Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts, 31-17, in Super Bowl XLIV.
Here's to you Drew Brees. Happy Birthday.