It's going to take a lot to keep Brees grounded this Monday night in the Big Easy, but the Patriots defense has all the tools to do so.
“It’s huge. He’s on fire right now. If you don’t have any water to put it out, he’s going to keep burning you up," said linebacker Tully Banta-Cain on Friday afternoon in Foxborough. "But I think anytime you have a threatening quarterback like that the only way to beat them is pressure, and obviously the guys on the back end behind us doing the job and vice versa. We definitely have our hands full with him and everybody he has to go to.”
The Pats' linebacker has 33 tackles this season and one forced fumble. Brees has an NFL-most 22 passing touchdowns to go with 2,746 yards and a quarterback rating of 105.8. There aren't many flaws in the nine-year veteran's game, but Banta-Cain and the Pats' defense will be hungry to exploit what few opportunities Brees will give them.
“He makes quick decisions, he has a quick release," Banta-Cain said. "So it’s very tough and frustrating for a lot of defenses because you can get to him, and he’s still getting the ball off and getting the ball into tight places. And the guys are still making the plays. It’s a credit to him and the receivers making the plays, so you’ve just go to play even tighter.”
Brees has played the Pats twice in his career, completing a combined 29 of 42 passes for 352 yards and three touchdowns. In his 38-7 win over Tampa Bay last week, Brees fired three touchdown passes on just 187 yards for the Saints' 10th straight win of the season and seventh game of putting up 30 points or more.