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NEW ORLEANS, LA - OCTOBER 08: Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints reacts after throwing a 62 yard pass to take the all time yardage record against the Washington Redskins at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on October 8, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Chris Graythen/Getty Images

The New Orleans Saints moved to 4-1 with a 43-19 win over the Washington Redskins on Monday night at home in Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

Drew Brees made history in the victory, passing Peyton Manning as the NFL‘s all-time leading passer. He entered the game 200 yards behind Manning (71,940) and finished with 363 yards and three touchdowns through the air.

Brees climbed into first place with his 62-yard touchdown pass to Tre’Quan Smith with two minutes, 46 seconds left in the second quarter.

Breaking All-Time Passing Record Cements Drew Brees as Most Underrated QB Ever

Peruse any list of the top 10 quarterbacks in NFL history and Brees is likely hovering well outside the top five at the position—if he’s even included at all.

At 39 years old, Brees entered Monday night first in completion percentage (75.8) and seventh in yards per game (323.8) this season.

To put that into perspective, only one quarterback aged 30 or older has gone an entire season averaging at least 300 yards while completing 70 percent or more of his passes, per Pro Football Reference. Brees did it in 2011 and is on pace—along with Kirk Cousins—to do it again in 2018.

There’s no question Brees benefits from playing in an era that has inflated passing numbers across the board. Critics will also point to the Saints’ lack of team success recently. New Orleans has two playoff appearances since 2011.

But Brees is clearly head and shoulders above nearly every quarterback in the NFL today—Tom Brady and possibly Aaron Rodgers excluded—and has shown little sign of a decline. He’s also the biggest reason the Saints have not won fewer than seven games in a season since his arrival in 2006. Like Manning, Brees has been saddled with some terrible defenses through the years.

Putting Brees ahead of Brady, Peyton Manning or Joe Montana is a stretch, but NFL fans might be failing to appreciate how great he has been for 18 seasons.

What’s Next?

The Saints have a week off before they return to the field Oct. 21 on the road against the Baltimore Ravens. Washington, which fell to 2-2, stays in the NFC South for a home matchup with the Carolina Panthers.

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