Top story No. 1: Saints win first Super Bowl
• Drew Brees: The quarterback that no other team had faith in after a 100 percent tear of his right labrum and a 50 percent tear in his right rotator cuff in the final week of the 2005 season while with San Diego. It's fitting the Saints were the ones to take the leap of faith.
Brees brought the Saints back to life with the team's best season up to that point in 2006 when New Orleans advanced to the NFC Championship Game, where it lost to Chicago. Everyone knew Brees was on the brink of the elite group of quarterbacks alongside Manning and Tom Brady after huge statistical seasons in 2007 and 2008. The problem was the Saints missed the playoffs in both seasons.
Then came 2009 and you know the rest. Forget his superb regular season. Look at his postseason numbers: 732 passing yards, 70.6 percent completion percentage, eight touchdowns, zero interceptions, 117.0 passer rating. He outplayed three Hall of Fame passers -- Kurt Warner, Favre and Manning -- in three consecutive games. Brees left his most brilliant of the three performances for Super Bowl XLIV, where he threw for 288 yards and two TDs while completing a sick 82.1 percent of his passes. Not even Manning and all his brilliance could touch that as Brees made his leap to elite status by earning Super Bowl MVP honors.
And who can forget Brees' candid moment with his son, Baylen, on the victory platform as they reached for the confetti? An instant and everlasting feel-good moment.
"We played for so much more than just ourselves," Brees said after being named Super Bowl MVP. "We played for the entire Gulf Coast region. We played for the entire 'Who Dat' Nation."
On the field, then Saints linebacker Scott Fujita probably said it best following the NFC title game: "Brett Favre is a great story. But the New Orleans Saints are a better story."
I can go on and on about moments and players that made the Saints such a unique story. Yet it's the underlying notion that the Saints played for something bigger that makes their run to winning Super Bowl XLIV most unique. They played for a city that care forgot four years earlier.
Take it from myself as a native New Orleanian, this title meant more for this town and this Gulf South region than I can properly give it credit for. I don't think I'm off based by saying this but I'll do it anyway: No professional team championship will mean more to its fan base than what the Saints accomplished by winning Super Bowl XLIV.
It goes beyond sports.
Top story No. 1: Saints win first Super Bowl - NFL - CBSSports.com Football
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