Brees, QBs strip down for Team Gleason

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. -- Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints quarterbacks took the ALS ice bucket challenge up a notch by stripping down Wednesday.

Brees then vowed to donate up to $10,000 to former teammate Steve Gleason's Team Gleason foundation for users who retweet the video of the almost-naked ice-bucket challenge.

The video was inspired by Gleason, who true to his bold form, went completely naked for his own ice-bucket dousing before challenging Brees to do the same.

Brees, Luke McCown, Ryan Griffin and Logan Kilgore accepted the challenge by stripping down to their girdles. They turned it into one of their daily competitions by completing a series of six passes and submerging in buckets of ice-cold water for 10 seconds. Griffin was declared the winner.

The Saints' quarterbacks then challenged the quarterbacks from all of their NFC South rivals to follow suit.

The ice-bucket challenges have become a phenomenon, performed by countless celebrities and sports stars while increasing donations to ALS charities by millions, since being started by former Boston College baseball player Pete Frates.

And as The Times-Picayune's Jeff Duncan pointed out, Frates himself was inspired by Gleason, who has become a world-renowned crusader for ALS patients since being diagnosed with the disease in 2011.

Saints coach Sean Payton also promised to complete his own ice-bucket challenge on Wednesday – though he was planning to remain dressed.

"Look, it's close to home for us with Steve," Payton said. "And I think anything to raise awareness … And I would say this, I don't know that any individual has raised more awareness than Steve Gleason with regards to this disease."