Brees, Manning Feel At Home When NY Giants-New Orleans Saints Play Monday
Written by  // Friday, 25 November 2011 13:31 //
brees-panthersWhen Drew Brees hit New Orleans he quickly learned it was the city that could be called--the “Home of the Mannings”.

"Archie, having played here and lived here ever since he joined the Saints and being very involved with the community, and Eli and Peyton both, with everything they've accomplished, people take a lot of pride in saying those guys are from New Orleans."
 "Archie will text me every now and then just to check in and say hello as wish me luck and that kind of thing," Brees told giants.com/news-and blogs, the Giants newsletter. "He's been very nice and always there if I need anything, the whole family. Cooper Manning, Archie's oldest son, and his wife Ellen and the kids live like two minutes from where we live, so we'll see them every now and then. It's always good hanging out with them and catching up."

NFL quarterbacks have a fraternity of their own, and Brees knows Peyton and Eli Manning.

"Whenever I see Eli, like at a Pro Bowl a few years ago or I saw him at a golf tournament one time -- we'll see each other maybe a couple of times a year, and it's very cordial," said Brees."I have a lot of respect for Eli and what he's been able to accomplish. All quarterbacks kind of have this relationship, just because you know what each one of us goes through and you all kind of get together. When we're around each other every thing's fine. I don't text or call Eli all of the time or anything, but I definitely have respect for him and consider him a friend."

This Monday night, Eli is facing a Saints team that has won its last two games, is well-rested after a bye and has support of one of the NFL's loudest crowds. The Giants have lost their last two games to the 49ers and Eagles and are a half a game behind the Cowboys for the lead in the NFC East.

"It's going to be loud for our communication in the huddle, everybody has to hear our calls that we are making," said Manning. "We can't let that be a distraction and keeping it from letting us do our job."

Manning likes returning to his hometown. "It's a good place," said the former Newman quarterback. "I grew up going to games there, so it's always a special trip.  It will be my second trip down there. I'm really treating it like every other away game. I'm not  seeing any  family or friends or sight-seeing. I'm going in there as a business trip and know that we have a big game. I want to get our there and make sure our offense and our team are playing our best."

Manning's first visit with the Giants is not an event the quarterback likes to remember. On Oct. 18, 2009, a 5-0 Giants team stormed into the Superdome, fell behind and eventually lost 48-27. Manning competed only 14 of 31 passes for 178 yards, a touchdown and an interception.

For the second time in four games, Manning will face a team whose quarterback is also a former Super Bowl MVP like he is. On Nov. 6, he threw a touchdown pass with 15 second remaining to lift the Giants past Tom Brady and the Patriots, 24-20. His adversary on Monday night is Brees, who led the Saints to victory over Peyton Manning and the Colts two years ago. Brees is having an extraordinary statistical season, leading the NFL in attempts, completions and passing yards. And while Brees is enormously well-liked through the Who Dat Nation, he believes New Orleans is still very much Manning country.

More Saints…

Former Saints kicker Tom Dempsey will appear at the Saints Hall of Fame Museum in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Monday prior to the Saints' game against the Giants. Dempsey will be available for autographs and pictures from 5 p.m.-6:30 p.m. The Saints' Hall is located at Gate B on the Plaza level of the stadium. Dempsey's 63-yard field goal in 1970 was a record-breaking field goal that has since been tied by Jason Elam of the Broncos...

Former LSU safety and Giants third-round draft pick Chad Jones will join his Giants teammates on the sideline during Monday night's Saints-Giants game. "It might bring tears to my eyes on that field, especially in front of the fans in New Orleans, Jones told Mike Garaofolo of the Newwark Star-Ledger. "I'm sure they're happy for me, just seeing me on the  field standing with the team even  though it's the opponent. It's definitely going to be a great feeling." One year and a half after a life-threatening car crash, Jones is ready to take a new step in his recovery. He is currently on the reserve/non-football injury list, and hopes to make it back to the NFL next year. He admits that he has been depressed at times during his rehabilitation, but ran a 4.84 40-yard dash last month and has made progress since. "I've got a lot of family that's coming to town, just to see me on the sidelines," said Jones. "It's great being part of this."...

(The Giants media relations department contributed to this feature).

(Visit Louisiana Sports Talk for your Saints and LSU collectibles).

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Ed Staton

Ed Staton is a former sports writer for the Times Picayune and New Orleans States Item.  He also served as the New Orleans Saints Information Director.  He has won 43 media awards in writing, design and photography.  


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