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Drew Brees seems to be forgetting about Patrick Willis, NaVorro Bowman

Thomas Davis and Luke Kuechly are arguably the best linebacker duo in the NFL this season. Drew Brees took it a step further.

Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints are hosting the Carolina Panthers on Sunday, and it has given him a chance to completely forget about the greatness of Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman. The Saints quarterback was speaking about the Panthers defense, and he had high praise for their inside linebackers.

“Those two linebackers, Thomas Davis and Luke Kuechly are one of the best tandems certainly in the business now, but maybe ever. Those two guys are pretty incredible,” Brees said. “Just what they do and how they execute the defense and run the scheme and get everybody squared away with what they’re doing, they’re a very smart group and a high performing group. I’ve got a lot of respect for these guys.”

Davis and Kuechly are a fantastic pair of inside linebackers, and you can make a strong argument they are the best duo right now. And of course, with the Saints facing the Panthers this week, it is no surprise Brees would play them up. It is not an entirely apples-to-apples comparison given they play in a different system than Willis and Bowman, or other linebacker groups, but the comparison is still there.

Kuechly and Davis could get the edge in terms of longevity together. Willis and Bowman played together for three seasons, in 2011, 2012, and 2013. Bowman suffered his knee injury in the playoffs after the 2013 regular season, which cost him all of 2014. Willis suffered a toe injury during 2014 that led to his retirement before Bowman returned in 2015.

Kuechly has been one of the best handful of linebackers since he first entered the league, while Davis took time to develop because of three ACL tears throughout his career. If they can get another couple strong years together, that will be big, but it’s tough to compare them to the peak level of Willis and Bowman.