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Former New Orleans Saints quarterback Luke McCown announces retirement

McCown was Drew Brees' backup from 2013-15

Photos of Luke McCown from 2015 Training Camp and 2015 preseason games. New Orleans Saints photos.

Luke McCown, who served as Drew Brees' backup at quarterback with the New Orleans Saints from 2013-15, on Friday officially announced his retirement.

"it's bittersweet to leave the game I love and the craft I've worked at since the second grade," McCown wrote in a letter that was released to the public. "I've got lots of people to thank."

McCown started one game for the Saints, a close loss at the Caroline Panthers, and was exceptional. He completed 32 of 39 passes for 335 yards and was leading the Saints on a potential game-winning drive when cornerback Josh Norman made an athletic interception to seal the game.

McCown, who was born in Jacksonville, Texas and played collegiately at Louisiana Tech, played 10 years in the NFL. The 6-foot-3, 208-pounder started his career with the Cleveland Browns, played two seasons with Tampa Bay before stints with Jacksonville and Atlanta. He started 10 games and finished his career completing 216 of 356 attempts for 2,370 yards and nine touchdowns.

McCown ended his letter with a series of hashtags - #WhoDatNation, #NotJosh (his brother is an NFL quarterback too), #Yes-TheVerizonBackupGuy. McCown starred in a Verizon commercial that played off his status as a longtime backup.

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