Updates continue to stream in about Drew Brees’ rib injury, with each piece of news seeming worse than the last. After Sunday’s game against San Fransisco, where the 41-year-old left early, doctors confirmed a handful broken ribs and a collapsed lung.
But on Saturday night, fans received a new update. According to Ed Werder of ESPN, doctors diagnosed Brees with eight rib fractures on his left side, with three additional fractures on his right. The news shocked everyone around the NFL as they imagined the pain that the well-liked quarterback must be in.
Just for context, humans only have 24 ribs. Brees has injured nearly half of those.
NFL media members and fans moved to Twitter to express their shock at the injury and their subsequent respect for the Saints quarterback. Here are a few examples:
are all of Drew Brees' 11 rib fractures in different ribs? does this man have fractures in (does math) 45.8 percent of his ribs????? pic.twitter.com/bJaQY35OHF
— Rodger Sherman (@rodger) November 22, 2020
Holy crap…So Drew Brees fractured 11 ribs??
And still led a 2-minute scoring drive. Guy is a warrior. https://t.co/1bsvUFSmlT
— Andrew Doak (@AndrewDoak_WWL) November 22, 2020
50% of Drew Brees' ribs are fractured. https://t.co/fM5z6dMX9C
— Adam Silverstein (@SilversteinAdam) November 22, 2020
Ouch—that NBC job waiting for Drew Brees sounds pretty good right now https://t.co/v2b2rjwpa8
— Brian Webber (@bwwebber) November 22, 2020
The Saints placed Brees on the Injured Reserve list earlier this week. Although it’s hard to see him returning soon, the team has yet to rule out their starting quarterback past the three games he’ll spend on IR.
In the mean time, Sean Payton and New Orleans need to focus on winning football games. Although Brees hasn’t been as sharp in 2020, he’s still among the best leaders in the NFL. The team won’t be able to replicate everything his brings to the field on Sunday’s but they’ll have to do their best to minimize the damage.
The Saints go into this weekend’s game against Atlanta at 7-2, comfortably in first in the NFC South. Although Payton tried to stay guarded about the team’s starting quarterback this weekend, Taysom Hill looks poised to take the reins in New Orleans. The Saints also have former Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston, if need be.
While New Orleans focuses on winning a football game, the rest of the NFL will send their best wishes to Brees.
The Saints play the Falcons at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday.