FOXBORO, Mass. — You don’t need to be a genius to realize there are plenty of similarities between Tom Brady and Drew Brees.
Both are legendary quarterbacks who have led illustrious careers, all while playing for a long, long time.
But few know just how special both are quite like Benjamin Watson.
The 38-year-old has spent a combined 10 seasons between the New England Patriots and New Orleans Saints and is about to kick off a second stint with the Pats.
Following the first day of New England training camp Thursday, Watson went into quite a bit of detail about the similarities of the two signal-callers.
“I would say I just grew tremendously (playing win both QB’s),” Watson said. “It’s amazing how much you can grow as a player when you have the right coach, the right system, the right offensive coordinator, but also the right quarterback. Certain quarterbacks — really there is a certain gene in a lot of quarterbacks that makes them compete and makes them want to perfect their craft with other players. With Tom and with Drew, if it’s staying after practice and running extra routes, if they’re on a pitch count and they say “Bump the pitch count, I’ve got to get this right with my guys,” they’ll do that. It’s in the meeting rooms, when you’re running a route in a meeting room and we’re watching it on film, and they’d like you to break it a little bit earlier. Even if in the textbook it says to break it at five yards, and they say, ‘You know what, I need you to break it here and I’ll be ready to throw you the ball.’ It’s them vocalizing that. As a player receiving that, it helps you to grow as a player, and in your relationship with them.
“That’s what those guys do and it benefits them because they’ve been in the same offense for a long time — so they kind of have their own spin on it — but they also know how to communicate and coach the players that they’re going to be playing with from year to year, because that always changes.”
While Brady has a significant edge in Super Bowl rings, there’s no question both have led storied careers.