While everyone decides today to judge Peyton Manning legacy on one game. Reminder That Tom Brady and Peyton Manning combine have lost their 4 Super Bowl starts while recently Joe Flacco and Eli Manning have won three for three Super Bowl starts during the same time span. Best teams win Super Bowls not Best QB. With that being said. Here is my personal rankings of Best QB of all-time in the NFL based on many criteria.
1-John Elway (1983-’98): Probably the best pure athlete on this or any list. Rare running ability. Won 2 Super Bowls, took the Broncos to 5 Super Bowls. Tremendous athleticism. In his 16-year career with the Broncos, Elway threw for 51,475 yards, 300 touchdowns, and 226 interceptions (1.33 to 1 ratio), with a 56.9 completion percentage and a 79.9 QB rating. He was selected to nine Pro Bowls. Elway was also a good running quarterback, rushing for 3,407 yards and 33 touchdowns in his career.
In the playoffs, he had a 14-8 career record as he threw 27 touchdowns and 21 interceptions with a 79.7 QB rating. Elway also amassed six touchdowns and 461 yards on the ground. He led the Broncos to five Super Bowl appearances, winning the last two in his final two seasons. Defensive coordinators and safeties feared his long arm so much that running backs Gaston Green, Bobby Humphrey and Sammy Winder all earned Pro Bowl berths taking handoffs from Elway. But the myth is Elway benefitted from Terrell Davis and Davis didn’t benefit from Elway. Made the Broncos relevant and dangerous for 16 years. Elway has 35 4th quarter come back wins which ranks 3rd all-time by any QB since 1960. Elway won 148 games in the regular season which ranks him currently tied for 3rd all-time and ranks 3rd in playoff wins with 14.
2. Joe Montana (1979-’94): Great passer and a great runner. So poised and so accurate. It was poetry in motion. In 10 seasons as a full-time starter in San Francisco, Montana won four Super Bowls, three Super Bowl MVPs and two AP league MVPs. Led the Kansas City Chiefs to AFC Title game in 1993 and playoffs in his last year in 1994. Montana has 31 4th Quarter comeback wins which is tied for 4th currently with Tom Brady. Montana is 2nd all-time with 16 playoff wins.
3. Dan Marino (1983-’99): Perhaps the quickest release ever. Pure pocket passer with cannon for an arm. Highly emotional leader. Had to play with a mediocre roster throughout his career with Dolphins including lack of running game and defensive play makers. Marino set the table for the game we have today. His 48-TD, 5,000-yard sophomore was set back in the day when Defenses can be physical with WRs and there were not many rules in favor of the quarterback and offense like there is today. In his 17-year career with the Dolphins, Marino threw for 61,361 yards, 420 touchdowns, and 252 interceptions (1.67 to 1 ratio), with a 59.4 completion percentage and an 86.4 QB rating.
He was selected to nine pro bowls and earned three first-team All Pro selections, including the 1984 MVP award. He won five passing yard titles, three passing touchdown titles, and one QB rating title. Marino played with only 1 player currently in the Hall of Fame in center Dwight Stephenson who Marino played with in Stephenson back end of his career. The only other player that could get in the next hand ful of years is Defensive End Jason Taylor who Marino played with at the end of Marino career and right at start of Taylor’s career. Montana in comparison played with three players that are currently in the Hall of Fame including Jerry Rice who regarded as the great WR that has ever played with other players that played with Montana still under consideration for the Hall of Fame like Charles Haley. Elway played with two including TE Shannon Sharpe and has others like Terrell Davis who are under consideration. Unitas played with eight. Marino ranks second all-time in 4th Quarter come back wins with 36. Marino is 5th all-time with 147 wins in the regular season.
4. Johnny Unitas (1956-’73): Helped drag the passing game into the modern era with the help of Raymond Berry. Unitas tossed 32 touchdowns in 1959! He led 34 fourth-quarter comebacks, which is second-best all time. He was MVP of the league three times and first-team all-pro five times. He dominated and defined the position throughout the 1960s including throwing a TD pass in 47 straight games. Unitas had 27 4th quarterback come backs in his career which is ranked 9th all-time. Remember they only started keeping track of the comeback stats in 1960.
5. Peyton Manning (1998- active): Early master of the no-huddle offense. 5-time MVP (Most in NFL History), One Super Bowl title, three Super Bowl appearances. 64,964 yards career passing, 491 TD passes career. Holds season records in touchdown passes (55) and passing yards which all occurred in 2013. Second all-time in NFL passing rating at 97.2. Playoff Passer Rating is 89.2 which ranks all-time 10th ahead of Brady, Aikman, Young, Favre among others that many of you may not have thought. Manning all-time leader in 4th Quarter Comebacks with 40. Manning is 2nd all-time with 167 wins in the regular season.
6- Tom Brady (2000- active): Brady has won 3 Super Bowls and taken the Patriots to 5 Super Bowls. MVP twice in his career. 359 touchdown in career, 49,149 yards career. Brady has the most playoff wins all-time currently by any QB with 18 and 3rd in regular season with 148 wins.
7- Brett Favre (1991-2010): Brett Favre leads all QBs in yards, touchdowns, interceptions, and completions by the time his career was over.Favre won three MVP awards and has led the league in completion percentage once, touchdown passes three times, and passing yards twice. He is also an 11-time Pro Bowler and three-time first team All-Pro. Favre is 13-11 in his post season career, throwing for 5,855 yards, 44 touchdowns, and 30 interceptions, resulting in an 86.3 QB rating. Favre has 30 4th quarter comeback wins. Favre also currently is the all-time leader in regular season wins by a QB with 186.
8- Bart Starr (1956-71) : In his legendary 16 year career with the Green Bay Packers, Starr threw for 24,718 yards, 152 touchdowns, and 138 interceptions (1.1 to 1 ratio) with a 57.4 completion percentage and an 80.5 QB rating (the league average was in the mid 60s when he played) along with 15 rushing TDs. Passer rating in playoffs of 104 is best all-time.
9-Roger Staubach (1969-’79): Didn’t start his career with the Cowboys until age 27 because of U.S. Navy commitment. Staubach won two Super Bowls and was a six-time Pro Bowler despite an abbreviated career.
10-Steve Young (1985-’99): Six NFL single-season passing titles. Gifted scrambler-runner like you see today in guys like Kaepernick, Wilson, RGIII etc. Young’s resume isn’t quite long e had seven great seasons in San Francisco. In seven seasons as a starter, Young made the Pro Bowl seven times, was all-pro three times, won the league’s MVP award twice and won a Super Bowl and SB MVP trophy. Third all-time in NFL Rating at 96.8
11. Terry Bradshaw (1970-’83): Big arm and an even bigger personality. Overcame sluggish start to his career and became the all-time Super Bowl winner. In his 14 year career with the Steelers, Bradshaw was a three-time Pro Bowler and a one-time first team All-Pro as he won an MVP award in the 1978 season. Bradshaw ranks 3rd all-time in playoff wins with 14.
12. Fran Tarkenton (1961-’78): Might be the most exciting player ever. Think of Johnny Manziel with perhaps more accuracy. Held all the passing records by the time Tarkenton retired. Led Vikings to Super Bowl three times. Tarkenton had 30 4th quarterback come back wins in his career.
13. Drew Brees (2001- active): Super Bowl champion in 2009, Thrown for over 5,000 yards in a single season four times, 51,081 career yards passing, 363 touchdown passes. 71.2% completion percentage, single season (highest ever)Fastest ever to reach 40,000 yards passing in NFL History. Fastest ever to reach 50,000 yards passing in NFL History. NFL record for most consecutive games with a passing Touchdown (54). Brees currently has 23 4th quarter wins all-time.
15- Otto Graham (1946-1955) – College tailback, switched to T-quarterback in pros. . .Guided Browns to 10 division or league crowns in 10 years. . . Topped AAFC passers four years, NFL two years. . . All-league nine of 10 years. . .Four TD passes in 1950 NFL title win. . .Had three TDs running, three TDs passing in 1954 NFL title game. . .Career passes for 23,584 yards, 174 TDs. . .Scored 276 points on 46 TDs. QB Rating 86.6 still ranks all-time 16th, the only QB from his era that ranks in the top 35 in passer rating.
16- Warren Moon (1984-2000) * NFL- 9-time NFL Pro Bowler, Also a 5 time Champion in the CFL with Edmonton Eskimos (1978-1983), two time CFL MVP. 291 tds, 49, 325 yards passing in NFL Career. 21,228 yards passing with 144 tds in the CFL. Moon had 26 4th quarter comeback wins in his career.
17- Ben Roethlisberger (2004- active): Has anyone ever been more difficult to sack in the pocket? Better throwing on the move than from the spot. Won 2 Super Bowls while taking the Steelers to three Super Bowls. QB Rating 92.6 ranks 9th all-time. Big Ben currently has 23 4th quarter come back wins.
18- Kurt Warner (1998-2009): NFL MVP in 1999, Been to Three Super Bowls, won one super bowl. Took two different teams (Rams, Cardinals) to the Super Bowl. QB Rating at 93.7 ranks 8th all-time in NFL. 2nd all-time in Passer Rating in playoffs at 102.
19. Len Dawson (1957-’75): Led the Chiefs to 3 AFL Championships, Two Super Bowl Appearances, Super Bowl Champion including Super Bowl MVP. Passing Champion six times in his career. Most seasons leading the NFL/AFL in Pass completions percentage.
20-t. Dan Fouts (1973-’87): The backbone of Air Coryell. One of the best pure passers of his era. Six time Pro Bowler, NFL MVP in 1982, Threw for 43,040 passing yards in his career. Led the Chargers to two AFC Championship Game appearances. Fouts led the Chargers to 24 4th quarter come back wins.
20-t- Troy Aikman (1989-2000): 3-time Super Bowl Champion, Super Bowl MVP. Part of the Team of the 90s. Six time Pro Bowler.
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