METAIRIE, La. -- Drew Brees kicked off Christmas morning by posting a picture of himself decked out in holiday pajamas -- taken by his new toy, a flying drone camera.
The New Orleans Saints quarterback then ended the day with a picture of himself and wife Brittany in tacky Christmas sweaters and the note, “This concluded the Griswold family Christmas!”
The Saints got into the holiday spirit in more ways than one.
Veteran safety Roman Harper and teammates including receiver Michael Thomas and fellow defensive backs Jairus Byrd, Vonn Bell and De’Vante Harris invited 10 local families to spend the afternoon at the Saints practice facility.
And during halftime of Saturday’s 31-24 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Saints teamed up with Carnival Cruise Lines to surprise the family of enlisted Air Force serviceman Anthony Williams by staging a Christmas Eve reunion. Williams was reunited with his unsuspecting mother and four daughters on the field.
“Listen, I think it’s the greatest thing,” Brees said when asked about the halftime reunion. “We go on a road trip last week to Arizona for two days -- we head out there Friday and come back Sunday -- and, man, I couldn’t stand it, missing my kids, being away from them for two days. And talk about a lot of our military personnel, going overseas and being away from their families for nine months, 12 months, 15 months at a time at times. I’ve had a chance to be over there with those guys and talk to 'em about it. I’ve been on five USO trips, and I tell 'em, ‘Man, I don’t know how you guys do it, but we thank you so much, we appreciate you so much.’
“So when they have those opportunities to surprise their families for Christmas, are you kidding me? ... Those men and women are tremendous. They’re so courageous, they sacrifice so much, and we owe them so much.”