Linebacker Jonathan Vilma’s return to the field Sunday was an emotional boost for his teammates and Saints fans, and safety Malcolm Jenkins’ herculean effort to stop Vincent Jackson’s gimme touchdown at the 1.5-yard line added fuel to the fire (so much so that some are calling it the turnaround play of the season), but it was quarterback Drew Brees’ stellar performance that lifted the team to a 35-28 victory over Tampa Bay. Three days before the game, Forbes analyzed what the hard-working QB means not only for his struggling team this year, but also for the still-recovering New Orleans community.
The Forbes story explores Brees’ ongoing effort to help his adopted city’s recovery, most recently with his new clothing line. The magazine notes that the line, called Nine Brand, launched Sept. 9, coincidentally the day the Saints kicked off the 2012 season, with a limited edition T-shirt called “All In” as its first product. On the shirt is a fleur de lis with the words from a poem Brees wrote on a sleepless night to commemorate the resilience of the city.
New Orleans Saints’ quarterback, Drew Brees, has played a major role in taking his team out of a perpetual “’Aints” status when he led them to Super Bowl victory in 2010. And, his story has been one of resilience and revival, much like that of his adopted city. After a potentially career-ending injury exiled him to join the once doomed franchise in New Orleans, the community immediately embraced him, regardless of his underdog status. Subsequently, he embraced back.
Now, Brees is one of the highest paid and most sought after football players in the league. In addition, the Super Bowl MVP holds enough records to guarantee the success of his continued career, has enough endorsement deals to support his family for the long term, and is also the owner of two Jimmy John’s franchise locations. However, with the launch of his new lifestyle apparel line just last month, you might be asking yourself why a seemingly financially stable football player is turning to entrepreneurship now.
On the field, Brees is leading his team. He is the key decision maker and influences every play, while encouraging his team to work towards a common goal. Off the field, he is honing those skills as an entrepreneur, and accredits his love of New Orleans for that motivation. Incorporating elements that are representative of the city, Drew and his wife, Brittany, founded Nine Brand based on the idea that it would be an investment for the community, not just another way to earn a buck.
Nice job, Brees, but Denver and a 3-4 record, await you. Read the full story here.
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