New Orleans Siants quarterback Drew Brees sees an inevitable return to prominence in the league, possibly in 2017.
The Saints have had three 7-9 seasons in a row, but they’re not banking on a fourth year with a losing record.
“I think that we’re very close,” Brees said, per Pro Football Talk.
“I’m excited about the offseason acquisitions we’ve made, we’ve got five picks in the first three rounds, five picks in the first  picks in this year’s draft, so the ability to go out and acquire some young talent as well, some guys who can come in and make an instant impact. Now more than ever you’re seeing young people come in and playing key roles on teams and maybe that’s just, from high school to college to the NFL, the development of these guys is at an all-time high so they’re coming in more and more ready to take on significant roles. So when you add all those things up, plus the veteran presence on our team and the leadership, and certainly the motivation from what’s transpired the last three years, I feel very good about where we’re at.”
On the departure of wide receiver Brandin Cooks, traded to the Patriots earlier this month:
“That was tough because I love Brandin. Not only is he a great teammate, he’s a great friend,” Brees said. “I think it was just one of those unfortunate things that maybe took on a life of its own, too, as the season progressed and then in the offseason, there was so much speculation about his intentions and that kind of thing in regards to whether he wanted to be here or not wanted to be here. I think a lot of that was fostered by the media, but at the end of the day I hope he got what he wanted or got into a good situation, which I think he did, and we got some draft picks out of it.”