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Saints QB Drew Brees Retires; The Washington Impact

The Drew Brees decision means a big change in New Orleans - and a continuing search in Washington

Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints has made his decision final, on Sunday announcing his decision to retire, bringing a close to a legendary 20-year NFL career.

And yes, there is a trickle-down that impacts every other team in the NFL that is in search of a QB.

Interestingly, Brees' announcement comes 15 years to the day of when he signed his first deal with the Saints. Other than that, it's no surprise; teams have anticipated that the 2020 season would be his last.

“After 20 years as a player in the NFL and 15 years as a Saint, it is time I retire from the game of football,” Brees wrote on Instagram. “Each day, I poured my heart & soul into being your Quarterback. Til the very end, I exhausted myself to give everything I had to the Saints organization, my team, and the great city of New Orleans. ... I am only retiring from playing football ... Now my real life‘s work begins!”

And what does this have to do with the Washington Football Team?

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It essentially takes off the market a quarterback who is scheduled to be a free agent starting this week, when the NFL shopping window opens (Monday for negotiations, Wednesday for signings). 

That QB is Jameis Winston, who might have been on the WFT wish list - searching for a quarterback as they are - but who is even now more likely to be retained by New Orleans.

The heir was already supposed to be Winston, and according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Saints are in the process of putting together a deal to keep the quarterback with the team in 2021. ... the two parties working together to upgrade Winston's level of play from his five years with the Buccaneers.

Winston, 27, threw just 12 passes for the Saints in 2020. But he's moving up, and Brees is moving on - just as teams like the WFT who might have been interested in Jameis Winston will likely have to do as well.

READ MORE: Is It Tru? Washington Football Team Free Agency Shopping: Positional Preview - QBs