BOSTON (CBS) — There is a whole lot of respect between Tom Brady and Drew Brees.
The two are some of the best to ever sling a football, with 22 Pro Bowls between them. They currently sit No. 3 and No. 4 on the NFL’s all-time passing yards list (Brees has thrown for 66,402 yards while Brady has 61, 849 yards) combining to throw for over 70 miles throughout their career.
The future Hall of Famers will square off on Sunday for the first time since 2013, giving them each a chance to sing each other’s praises ahead of their Week 2 tilt in New Orleans. Their relationship goes back to when the two were in playing Big 10 college football, Brady at Michigan and Brees at Purdue.
“We played them my senior year in the Big House and beat them,” Brady said Wednesday before smirking and shrugging, drawing a laugh from reporters down at Gillette Stadium. “He’s had a great career. He’s a year younger than me, came out and did a great job in San Diego and has done a great job in New Orleans.
“I think so much of him and his consistency, what he brings to the team. He’s a great player and has been a great player for a long time,” said Brady.
For Brees, those feelings are mutual.
“I’ve got a ton of respect for Tom and what he’s accomplished. I don’t know if there is a guy in this game that has been more disciplined, more mentally tough and is just so consistent, so, so consistent,” he said on a conference call with the New England media. “A lot to be respected. I have a ton of respect for him, his approach and his accomplishments.”
Brady and the Patriots got the best of Brees’ Saints the last time the two quarterbacks went head-to-head, with the Patriots enjoying a dramatic 30-27 comeback win in Foxboro in 2013. But four years prior, the Patriots were dealt an embarrassing 38-17 Monday night loss by the Saints in their most recent visit to The Big Easy.
Brady is hoping for a much different outcome on Sunday afternoon down in New Orleans, especially coming off of a bad loss in Week 1.
“We have to be at our best physically, mentally and emotionally. This team really tests you. We didn’t play well last time we were down there and got our butt kicked. We’re going to be challenged in a big way,” said Brady.