Drew Brees certainly has been enjoying his time off from football since the Saints were knocked out of the playoffs. First there was the Funny or Die video with Ray Lewis, then there was his partnership with FreeRice.com and now he's probably making every Louisiana elected official quake in their seats as he tells Reuters that he would "consider" running for office.
From the story:
Definitely, politics fascinates me, I find it very interesting. I guess, when you look at all the issues and certainly in the current economic times, at times you hate to see both parties going at each other like they do.
"You feel at times, man this is counter-productive, why can't we just stick to the issues? Why can't we just work to resolve some of the problems that our country has and the rest of the global economy has and (focus on) ways that we can help?
"I think the fact is that anybody who goes into politics feels like 'I can make a difference'. But it's not one person, you need so many others. I would love to do it, probably at some point, but I'll wait a while."
Athletes running for political office is nothing new, with former New York Knick and U.S. Senator Bill Bradley likely the most famous example and former Redskins quarterback and congressman Heath Shuler (and Skins' fans vain attempts at keeping him from returning to D.C.) being the funniest.
There is, of course, the question as to whether athletes are truly qualified to run for public office. After all, just because you're overwhelmingly popular on the sports field doesn't mean that you'd be adept to, say, solve a city's budget deficit or assessing a state's public university system. In other words: there's a reason why lots of athletes are never actually elected to public office (or are terrible at their job if they are).
None of this is to say that Brees isn't an intelligent and thoughtful person who's qualified to work in government. After all, he graduated from Purdue with a degree in industrial management and his charity work and vocal concern over New Orleans' crime problem show he's conscious of the greater world outside football. We'd just hope that he would take the decision to run as seriously as he prepares for opponents on Sundays, as opposed to just hiring a PR firm to post signs with his face on your front lawn (our hunch is that he would do the former).
In any case, unpopular New Orleans politicians (and even popular ones, for that matter) better start praying Brees isn't going after their position when he retires from football. After all, the man would likely get away with murder in this town.