Former New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees is crossing two "firsts" off his list on Thanksgiving. Brees will make his first appearance in the Caesars Superdome since his retirement and will do so by calling his first NFL game as a color analyst.
To celebrate Brees' return, the Saints plan to honor the future Hall of Famer at halftime. Fans at the game will receive "Thank You Drew" rally towels to wave during the contest. The team is also encouraging fans to submit video messages to Brees that might be played in the stadium.
Saints owner Gayle Benson said it was the perfect moment to pay tribute to Brees, whom Benson described as "one of the greatest Saints in the history of the organization."
"Drew Brees will always be considered one of the greatest Saints in the history of the organization" said Saints owner Gayle Benson. "While we look forward to one day welcoming Drew back as a Hall of Famer and a member of our Ring of Honor, Thanksgiving night is the perfect opportunity for us to say thank you to Drew and his family the right way — on the field and in front of 70,000 of the best fans in football. We were blessed to have Drew as a member of our team for 15 years. The record-breaking impact he had on the field is legendary, as is the impact he, Brittany and the Brees family continue to have on our community."
The team will also donate money from its 50/50 raffle to Brees' charity.
Drew Brees making NFL color analyst debut
The game will mark the first time Brees will serve as a color analyst during an NFL game. Brees signed on with NBC Sports as a studio analyst following his retirement. Brees has done color commentary before, but it's been at the college level. In April, NBC announced Brees would call Notre Dame games with Mike Tirico, who will be in the booth with Brees on Thanksgiving.
Brees is far from the first quarterback to become an analyst in retirement. Brian Griese is currently part of the "Monday Night Football" booth, Tony Romo is one of the better analysts at CBS, and Peyton and Eli Manning are doing their own thing with the "Manningcast" during Monday games.