The Westlake bowl

For only the second time in NFL history, two quarterbacks from the same high school went head to head in the playoffs. Nick Foles and Drew Brees, two Westlake alumni faced off Jan. 4 in Philadelphia in the NFC Wild Card game.

Foles played well for the Eagles, throwing for 195 yards and two touchdowns. But Brees led the Saints to the win with 205 passing yards and one touchdown pass, setting up a 32-yard Shane Graham field goal with zero seconds left to win the game 26-24.

While Brees has established himself to be one of the elite quarterbacks in the NFL, Foles is on the way to be one. After he was named the backup at the start of the season, he got a chance to prove himself in week five when Michael Vick, the starting quarterback for the Eagles, injured his hamstring.

From there, Foles took off, throwing for 2,891 yards, 27 touchdowns and only two interceptions. Many people never saw Foles’ success coming, they thought that someone that inexperienced shouldn’t do that well.

Brees though, in one of his press conferences, said that he wasn’t surprised at all by Foles’ unusual success this late in the season, because “He’s a Westlake guy.”

Westlake coach Darren Allman had the opportunity to meet both of these NFL superstars — Brees in a summer camp in 1991, and Foles before he was going to the NFL to play for the Eagles.

“I was not surprised by their success at all,” Allman said. “They both have been working toward (getting to the NFL) for a long time, but what is surprising is that they ended up playing each other.”

They both are in the top five of their respected categories. Nick Foles has the best passer rating in the NFL (119.2), and Brees has thrown for 5,162 yards this season. This was the fourth consecutive season he accomplished this.

“Both of those guys understand the balance of football,” Allman said. “They value family, value education and that’s helped them in a lot of things other than football, and will help them last a long time in the game.”

Foles is an up-and-coming star, and Brees is going to have more success in the future. They both have reached their dream to play in the NFL. But they hold to the same morals as they did at Westlake: Never give up, go that extra mile and be a leader. They have learned, studied and perfected these traits, which has helped them through their football careers, and their NFL future is getting brighter every game they play. But why would we expect anything different? They’re Westlake guys.