Drew Brees is aiming to make his return on Sunday after missing the last five games with a thumb injury. According to Erin Andrews of Fox Sports, the plan is to have Brees play in the Week Eight contest against the Arizona Cardinals. This will be his first game since injuring his thumb in Week Two against the Los Angeles Rams.
"Sean Payton saying before the game the goal to get (Brees) back is against Arizona next week," sideline reporter Erin Andrews said during the first half of the Saints vs. Chicago Bears game per NOLA.com. "He said if he's healthy you play him. And I said, 'So when does he start practicing?' He said he'll practice ... next week ... and we'll make the decision Wednesday or Thursday.
"I went up to Drew Brees, and I said, 'So this is what your coach said, what do you say?' And Brees said, 'Well, I already made my decision. I know when I want to come back.'"
This is not a surprise considering it was reported earlier that Brees has targeted returning in Week Eight.
"I've heard he's pushing to get back before Week 9 bye, but Saints want to be cautious, especially given Teddy Bridgewater's performance. Team seems to be eyeing Week 10 return, but Brees has apparently been living in the training room in hopes of targeting Week 8," Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports said on Twitter.
That's good news for the Saints, but at the same time, they don't need to rush Brees back because the team has been winning without him. On Sunday, the Saints were able to come away with a 36-25 win over the Bears and they now have a 6-1 record. Backup QB Teddy Bridgewater has been a steady hand, completing 67 percent of his passes and throwing for 1,370 yards, nine touchdowns and two interceptions.
Last week Saints head coach Sean Payton was asked if a player's return from injury depends on how the team is playing.
“I truly think, and I'm asked this a lot, we take the medical, the science relative to the player being ready to play or not, and we don't factor in, well we have a bye," Payton said. "Is the player healthy to play and if he is, then we'll play him and if he's not, then we won't. I think the exceptions to that might be when you get into the postseason, but I think we really try to pay attention to where the player is relative to his recovery and his injury and being smart."