Before Drew Brees Would Be Drafted By The San Diego Chargers
Before he would become the NFL’s comeback player of the year in 2004.
Before He would become a Super Bowl Champion With The Saints that included a Super Bowl
MVP performance during the 2009 season.
Before Brees would break NFL records for career pass completions, career completion percentage
and career passing yards.
Before he would break the record for most consecutive games with a
Before Drew Brees would have more than 3.2 million followers on Twitter, more than 1.3
million followers on Instagram and close to 2 million followers.
And Before he would become the 3rd best 12 year old tennis player in Texas
That’s right, bet you didn’t know that one!
But he’s since hung up his racket to become one of the most well respected players in
Both for his on-field performance and the person he is off the field.
I’m a Saints fan so I might be a little biased.
But Drew has had a long journey to the top.
He didn’t start playing tackle football until the 9th grade and it took him two years
before he was even able to see a start.
Even after a stellar high school career, he was overlooked by all of the major football
schools in Texas, even getting into a little bit of a beef with Texas A&M.
But as you know, he overcame every obstacle along the way to reaching the ultimate goal
of a Super Bowl.
But we’ll get into all of that in this video.
This, is the story, of Drew Brees.
What’s going on good people in the comment section?
I hope you’re having one Hecht of a day, name is Jeremy Hecht, and I’ll be your host
today as I take you through the life and career of Drew Brees prior to fame, here for you
of course, on Before They Were Famous.
I’m the LA host for this channel helping out Michael with weekly content.
If you’re a part of the toilet gang, welcome back, we accept new members always!
We’ve recently covered other QB’s like Lamar Jackson and Patrick Mahomes, so be sure
to check those out later and let us know who to cover next in the comments below as always
or you can hit me up on Instagram @jeremy_hecht I’m almost at 3000 followers so help me
But for now, I’ve got a Drew Brees trivia question for you?
What was the nickname that Drew’s teammates called him in college?
Let me know your guesses in the comments below and I’ll see you after the intro.
Drew Christopher Brees was born on January 15, 1979 in Dallas, Texas.
Drew’s father was Eugene Wilson “Chip” Brees the second, that’s a long name but
he just went by Chip.
He was a prominent trial lawyer in Texas, and his mother Mina Ruth was an attorney as
So you can probably bet that he grew up in a strict household.
Drew has also had football in his blood since day one.
He was even named after Dallas Cowboys Wide Receiver Drew Pearson, who is a part of one
of the most famous hail marry passes of all time:
For the win!!!
His mother Mina was an amazing high school athlete, who excelled in four sports, was
all-state in three and was a baseball cheerleader at Texas A&M.
That’s where she met Chip, who was a basketball player for the Texas A&M men’s team.
Drew’s uncle Marty Akins was an All-Southwest Conference quarterback at Texas.
Drew’s parents divorced when Drew was 8 and his younger brother Reid was 5.
Mina remarried to a district court judge Harley Clark.
The two were together for 10 years.
While his dad remarried to Amy Hightower, whose father was a congressman and later became
a state supreme court judge.
Powerful family, but Drew says that during the divorce, it was a very challenging period
for him and his brother.
The two would split their time between their mom and dad’s places but had trouble adjusting.
Drew’s grandfather Ray Akins, was one of 10 men chosen out of 100 to be a soldier who
fought in the battle of Okinawa.
It was one of the bloodiest battles in World War 2 history and out of 153 men in the battle,
only 3 survived.
Drew’s grandpa was one of them.
Later on, he ended up becoming a football coach.
Brees said speaking of his grandfather:
He was probably one of the most incredible people, incredible man, you would ever meet.
They just don’t make them like that anymore, honestly.
Akins was an offensive lineman who played college football at Southwest Texas University
in the late 1940’s, and upon graduation he was offered a position on the Chicago Bears.
And get this, while his grandson would years later sign an NFL contract worth 50 million
dollars, Drew’s grandpa was offered a whopping 6, uh, grand by the Bears.
Times have changed.
But as tempting as that offer was, Akins instead took a job as a high school football coach.
He coached for 38 years and became the third-winningest coach in Texas high school football at the
time of his retirement with over 300 wins!
Brees said that watching his grandma and grandpa together gave him the model marriage to look
He spent his summers between the ages of 5 and 10 attending his grandfather’s two a
day preseason practices at Gregory-Portland High School.
Brees says he looked up to the players on his grandfather’s team and he looked up
to his grandpa’s success.
Drew’s dad also would play catch with him for hours on the weekend so he grew a love
Brees also grew up feeding cows and fixing fences on his grandfather’s ranch every
But besides playing football and working with cows, Drew’s mother introduced him to Tennis.
And before long, he became one of the best junior tennis players in Texas.
He was actually ranked at number 3 in the US Tennis Association’s age 12 group.
But he DID have trouble beating his mom in a game of one-on-one tennis.
Drew always loved football, playing flag-football at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School, but he
wasn’t a world-class prodigy like some of the other people we cover on this show.
In fact, he didn’t actually strap on the pads until the 9th grade when he attended
But even then, he only played for the B team in his freshman year.
A year later, he became the backup on the junior varsity team.
before finally becoming the starter after their QB suffered a knee injury.
It was time for Drew to step up.
And boy did he ever step into that role.
Brees went 28-0-1 in his two seasons starting for the varsity team and lead Westlake to
a championship that included the offensive MVP award.
In those two seasons, he threw for close to 5,500 yards and had 50 Touchdowns.
But despite all of the stats and an undefeated varsity career, despite his coaches telling
universities that Brees was the most accurate passer they had ever seen, he was completely
overlooked by most of the major schools in Texas.
Brees had his sights set on one particular college.
If A&M had offered me a scholarship, I would have gone there in a minute.
And Drew was lead on to think that he would be receiving that offer.
According to Brees, he was contacted by the assistant coach who took him to lunch and
said he would schedule a visit for Drew.
But a couple weeks before he was supposed to attend, when he called up A&M to confirm,
they put him on hold and then never called him back!!!!
Sounds like that one girl that you always wanted and then thought you had a chance,
only to find out they were never interested in you in the first place and were already
dating someone else.
I feel ya Drew
The coach who gave Drew the run around later said that Drew was by far the best player
out of the three quarterbacks they were looking at.
Easy to say that in hindsight buddy!
Finally, two schools decided to give the kid a shot.
Purdue and Kentucky.
He chose to roll with Purdue because of their academic program.
Since birth, Drew has always had a big brown birth mark on his cheek that’s still noticeable
His friends growing up would tease him about it calling it turd, leech or roach.
His mother thought that she had caused the mark when he fell on her right side on a patch
of ice not too long before delivering Drew.
She would say
That’s where an angel kissed you.
When Drew got to college, his birth mark became a source of some good jokes between him and
At first, his teammate and best friend Ben Smith thought Drew was wearing a cheerleading
sticker on his face and thought to himself
“man this guy is lost!”
He remembers one night seeing Drew dancing with a girl at the club and the girl wetting
her finger to try to wipe it off.
Drew said “it ain’t comin off” and all of his friends lost it laughing.
The team even came up with a name for the birthmark
That’s no cap.
See what I did there…
Kap Per Nick?
The birth mark was named after a walk on wide out Matt Pernick, who had wild hair much like
the hair on Drew’s birth mark.
That was elaborate.
But as for Drew, he had his own nickname that we’ll get to later in this video.
Multiple members of his receiving core spoke to Sports Illustrated about how there were
always moments where they couldn’t even see Brees, but somehow he still managed to
find a way to get them the football.
Nick Saban, who was an NFL assistant for six years and coached against Drew in college
at Michigan State, said at the time:
Brees reminds me of Joe Montana.
He makes you feel that, play after play, you're about to do something big against him, and
then he does something big against you.
It's incredibly frustrating for a coach or a team.
Brees studied industrial management at Purdue where he maintained a 3.2 Grade Point Average,
but he was also focused on studying game film.
Brees would head to the football team office after his classes, arriving as late as 11pm
on some nights.
He would study game film and learn how to improve with every tape.
His first start came during his Sophmore season.
In his senior year, he lead the squad to a Big Ten Championship.
They also made it to the Rose Bowl for the first time since 1967.
In 2000, he won the Maxwell Award for the nation’s most outstanding player of the
year and was also 3rd in Heisman Trophy voting after coming in 3rd the year prior.
In 2001, Drew Brees graduated from Purdue with a degree in industrial management and
was also a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity.
In his career with Purdue, he set 2 NCAA records, 13 Big Ten Conference records and 19 Purdue
That included a Big Ten conference record in passing yards with close to 12,000, TD
passes with 90, and he tied an NCAA record for longest pass with a 99 yarder to teammate
So after a more than impressive college career, Drew Bree was projected to be a mid to late
first round draft pick.
But many teams were worried about how short Drew was compared to most NFL quarterbacks.
He was barely 6 feet tall.
People were also worried that his college’s offensive scheme was the real reason for his
So Breese slipped to the second round and was selected by the San Diego Chargers in
the 2001 NFL Draft.
San Diego originally had the first pick in the draft but traded it to Atlanta, who went
with Michael Vick.
Who is also one of my favorite players of all time…
Well, before you know, the whole, thing.
But Brees had a long road to the top in the NFL as well.
After a handful of seasons with San Diego and winning the NFL’s comeback player of
the year award, he headed to New Orleans, where he became what we now know as one of
the greatest quarterbacks of all time.
Plus, he won the city of New Orleans a ring.
Which is most important.
But that’s all in a day’s work for the guy who was known as Cool Brees in high school.
But as for the rest of the story, well you know the story because this is before they
Dream Good Live Better, I hope you have one Hecht of a Day, and I’ll see you in another