Saints QB Drew Brees tells WWL he wants to see community offer young men hope to curb violence _lowres

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees (9) moves to the field before the first half of an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons, Sunday, Jan. 3, 2016, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Saints quarterback Drew Brees made a plea to the community at large to find a way to curb violence by reaching out to young men in an interview on WWL Monday night.

Brees spoke at length about the loss of former teammate Will Smith, who was shot and killed after a traffic incident late Saturday night.

“I’ll be honest with you, part of my emotions is I was sad for New Orleans,” Brees told WWL. “And I also was angry at New Orleans.”

Brees, who told Peter King of the MMQB that he believes the community has been desensitized to violence in both New Orleans and the world at large.

And the quarterback made a point of noting that most violent crimes are committed by young men.

“What that tells me is that the person who’s pulling the trigger in many cases has no regard for the life he’s about to try to take, and he also has no regard for his own life because there’s consequences with that and they have to recognize those consequences,” Brees said. “What that tells me is that too many of these people don’t have any hope, and what’s the source for that? I think it’s a lot of things.”

Brees advocated for the community to find ways to reach young men and offer them reasons to stay away from gangs, drugs and violence.

“It’s not an easy process, and it’s not an overnight fix,” Brees said. “But that is something we can all band together, and we can find ways to make sure that these young men know that there is hope. They do have opportunity. There are people that care about them. So they don’t have to feel like this is their only option.”

The entire interview can be found at WWL Radio’s website.