On Sunday New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees has the chance to move past Johnny Unitas and establish a new NFL record for touchdown passes thrown in consecutive games. Unitas’ son Joe and his family will be watching and cheering on the Saints signal caller. Until recently it appeared currently suspended head coach Sean Payton, general manager Mickey Loomis and assistant head coach Joe Vitt would be forced to take in the game, and possibly see a historic moment, from afar.
Here’s a statement from the NFL: “Drew Brees requested permission for Sean Payton, Mickey Loomis, and Joe Vitt to attend Sunday night’s game in which Drew will attempt to set the record of 48 straight games with a touchdown pass. Commissioner (Roger) Goodell has granted that permission. Coaches Payton and Vitt and Mickey Loomis will be permitted to watch the game in a private area of the stadium and will have no contact with the team.”
Payton’s first year as Saints head coach was 2006, which was also Brees’ first with the team. Loomis has been the franchise’s general manager since 2002.
It’s not surprising Brees requested the presence of all three on Sunday because he’s the kind of guy who thinks about the team and organization first when it comes to accomplishments. It’s also not much of a surprise commissioner Goodell granted the request. This summer Payton himself asked for permission and was allowed to attend the Hall of Fame induction ceremony for long time Saints offensive lineman Willie Roaf.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter Mickey Loomis and Joe Vitt will not be present on Sunday.