New Orleans Saints Quarterback Drew Brees
Local Media Availability
Wednesday, November 9, 2016
Do you think the personality of the offense is changing?
"No, I just think we are becoming more efficient. I think we're getting better at some of the little things that we have been working on for a while and that we have been talking about for a while. I think that is showing. Obviously, you are referring to the number of run vs. pass (ratio). I think it has been a while since we had that type of balance. That is a good thing."
This is another great pass defense; as a competitor how much does that lift you guys?
"It's a tremendous challenge. They're defending Super Bowl champs for a reason. It's because there is not a weak link on that defense. (From) Their front four or really front five rushers to their linebacker corps to their secondary. It's top notch. All those guys are playmakers. They fly around and they get after you. We're going to need a great game of execution in all phases in order for us to be successful."
How much does playing an opponent like this take away from possibly saying alright, we're 4-4 and let's try to get to 5-4?
"To that point, I do not care what our record is. I do not care what their record is. I just know this – you turn on the tape and they're a very good football team. They're a very good defense. Like I said, there is a reason that they are defending Super Bowl champs. There is not a weak link in that defense. I think for us, no matter where we are in the season and no matter what our record is, bottom line, this is the next game and it is a huge challenge for us. This will be the best team that we have played thus far and we're going to need our best game to beat them."
You have played a lot of offensive linemen this season; how much does that help you that you have developed so many offensive linemen?
"We have had to do it out of necessity. At the end of the day, you're getting some of your best run blockers out there or best pass protectors. I think we mix and match so much when it comes to having an extra linemen, tight ends, we can go five-wide or we can do lots of things with the running backs. We are multiple in what we can do formationally and from a personnel standpoint. We feel like that is to our advantage."
With the short week coming up, do you look at these two (games) together or do you just focus on Denver, knowing Carolina is coming up on a short week too?
"We're all about Denver right now. The most important thing is winning this game."
Has there been any key to the fast starts? You guys have scored on four-of-eight opening drives; is there anything special happening there?
"I think we do a good job of preparing ourselves for the first 10 or 15 plays of the game. What we are looking to accomplish, the information we are trying to gather, what we are trying to attack and it comes down to execution in those drives and going down and being able to get hopefully touchdowns but certainly points."
Is Denver pretty straightforward in terms of how they do things?
"They do play a lot of man coverage because they've got great pass rushers and really top flight corners. They can do some other things as well. At the end of the day, you've got to be prepared for all of it."
What about the chemistry between the wide receivers and tight ends together that allows the offense to be successful?
"It is a young group of receivers actually. I love that group. I have said it a thousand times. I say it every week. I love the way they work, I love their focus, their intensity and attention to detail. They are all chomping at the bit to be great and they are hungry and competitive. You go to practice every day and those guys are staying long after practice is over working on catching balls from the jugs. I stay out there with them for a while but they stay after and do other stuff. They challenge one another too (and) they push one another. It is just a great group. They are fun to be around. They make me want to be my best for them and they certainly keep me energized."
Have you seen some of the hits on Cam (Newton) and thought that (would be) a penalty on me or anybody else?
"He does take a lot of hits. But he's carrying the ball I think a lot more than most. I don't know. I can't say. I've just seen the ones they show on ESPN. It's hard to tell the quantity at which they are coming or the situations where they're coming. I know there was a low one maybe two weeks back that looked like it was probably worth a penalty. I do not know. I am not the judge of it."
Would Denver fall into that category of being a defining win as well (like you said Seattle was)? They are the number one pass defense and are defending Super Bowl champions.
"Yes, they are that for a reason. It has a lot to do with their ability to provide tight man coverage and then get after the quarterback. You see quarterbacks all the time having to get the ball out much sooner than they want or the pass (thrown) is affected in some way by the pass rush. They have got some elite pass rushers and obviously tight coverage in the secondary. That typically equals low passing numbers. Then, the (efficiency creates) opportunities for turnovers. Historically over the last few years, with that pass rush and with that secondary, they've been able to generate those."
What does it do for the offense's confidence seeing how well you have run the ball the last few weeks?
"It certainly gives us confidence, but we know in order to keep that we have to do the little things really well and not pull back the reins on any of the things that got us to this point. There is a lot of time and energy that goes into plans and then our execution throughout the week, so we need to stay on top of that and we can always get better."
Do you have any thoughts on last night's election?
"It is what it is."
Does being mindful of time of possession cause you to be less aggressive in your offensive approach?
"I mean really time of possession is your opportunity to keep the opposing defense on the field, which means you're probably successful at what you're doing or at least you are converting enough (third downs into) first downs that you are sustaining drives and you're running the clock and typically if you can get into 8,9,10 plus play drives you are getting points and you are also wearing the defense down to the point where maybe those come a little bit easier. Now you get in the red zone and you have them worn down and you can maybe (call) a play action because it's a bit more effective because those guys aren't able to rush quite the same way or you're pounding them with the run and so you're getting a little bit more yardage. There's benefits to it for sure and then you keep your own defense off the field. When they go out there they are well-rested. They're ready to roll. There are a lot of benefits to it and it's one of the factors and then there are other things I look at first and you're looking at yards per carry, you're looking at how well you're doing on third down and red zone efficiency and certain things, but then you look at time of possession like ahh that's a good stat."
Do you ever think about taking a deep shot, but now's not the time because your controlling the clock?
"No, I mean listen if we felt like we saw an opportunity to get a big play then we would take advantage of it. I mean it's a constant chess match throughout the course of a game and you are trying to set things up, you're trying to manipulate things a little bit, but at the end of the day we're just trying to execute. There's no perfect play call, you have to go execute it and you can try and get a certain matchup, you can try to get a run against a certain defense or a certain front or whatever it is, but at the end of the day you still have to block and you still have to execute and you still have to go out and catch it."
Have you at all address getting over that .500 hurdle?
"No, bottom line is it's the next game. Doesn't matter our record right now it's the next game and it's the most important game against a really good football team."
What concerns you the most when you look at Von Miller?
"Man, he is disruptive, he has no weakness, he is so explosive, he is such a great athlete and even when he drops in coverage I mean he can flip his hips and run and do certain things that you just say for a guy that big and strong and powerful it is pretty incredible and then obviously when he rushes the passer the first thing you notice is his get off. The minute that ball is snapped he's up field and wreaking havoc. He's got all kinds of variety when it comes to his pass rush moves and he's got power, speed, quickness, spin, he can do it all. You obviously have to have a plan for a guy like that and also from me there has to be a clock in my head and I can't be holding the ball when he's rushing the passer."
Would you agree with Coach Payton that Von Miller is the best pass rusher in the game today?
"Yeah I would agree with that, he's exceptional."
How many guys have you played with in your career that you would have thrown that pass to them like you did to Michael Thomas?
"Not many, you have to have a lot of trust and confidence in a guy to throw that ball because it's a bit of a jump ball, obviously you are playing the odds knowing that your guy knows where the ball is going and the other guy doesn't, but still it's kind of a 50-50 deal and to know that I have a guy like that that loves to attack the ball and can make the play it's good to have that."
Where does this offensive group rank among the groups you have played with?
"I can't say that right now, I mean I think we are doing some things that we haven't been able to do successfully in a while on a consistent basis and we just have to keep that going the way that we have been able to run the football over the last few weeks I think it's a testament to the work ethic and time and energy we've really put towards it and it makes us a more complete offense. I think the really great offenses in the league especially the ones that we've had here have been very complementary in what we have been able to do, you want to be good in all phases, you want to have a bunch of different ways to attack a defense so if they are determined to take one thing away you can be really successful at everything else. Yeah, we have to keep working at it though."
What is the vibe around this locker room right now?
"We want to stacks some wins, we got two in a row right now and we'd like to get another one, but regardless I've said it three times since I've been sitting here, sorry to be redundant, but I really don't care about what our record is right now the whole .500 thing doesn't (matter). All I care about is about finding a way to win this game against a very good team."
What is your mindset playing the two teams in Super Bowl 50 last year in five days?
"I mean we better have our mind right, better have our A game so we'll be tested that's for sure."