Analyzing Gil Brandt’s Greatest NFL Quarterbacks of all Time Article.PackFan2005 Gil Brandt is a writer for NFL.com, and he’s made many articles with who he thinks are the top players of that certain position. I’ve noticed he lets his bias get in the way in some of his articles, and here I am, analyzing Brandt’s choices. So here we go. Here’s his list.
#16. Jim Kelly
Analysis: Jim Kelly? Yeah, he was pretty good, but you’d have to think, “aren't there better quarterbacks than him?” Yes, there are. Dan Fouts was left off the list, and I think he’s better than Jim Kelly. He shouldn’t be at the #16 spot.
#15. Drew Brees
Analysis: This is criminally low for the future hall of famer. By his retirement, he’ll most likely have most every passing record beat, and yet he’s ranked #15. That stunned me.
#14. Fran Tarkenton
(MIN) 1961-1966, 1972-1978
Analysis: This spot actually seems right for the Vikings great. He held many, many NFL records at the time of his retirement, and some still stand today. Of course, like Jim Kelly, he lost every Super Bowl he played in. Pity, because then he’d be higher up.
#13. Warren Moon
Should Moon even be on Brandt’s list? It’s a question I’ve been asking myself for a while. Maybe if he hadn’t played in the CFL for his young days. His issue was he played for garbage teams his whole career. The Oilers, Vikings, Seahawks, and Chiefs were awful in those years. Yet Moon produced solid stats. But I don’t think he should be on this list.
#12. Terry Bradshaw
Analysis: No, are you serious Gil? Bradshaw shouldn’t be at #12. Above the likes of Tarkenton and Brees, really? He won four Super Bowls because he had an elite team around him, and taking all that into consideration, he was a decent quarterback at best. I’d rank him #16 if I made the list.
#11. Sammy Baugh
Analysis: Baugh was pretty good for his time, but #11 seems high. Maybe lower him a little bit.
#10. Troy Aikman
Analysis: Here’s the bias. Aikman is like Bradshaw, they both had an elite team to carry them to Super Bowl wins. Aikman wasn’t elite, and that wouldn’t have changed if his career hadn’t been cut short due to injuries.
#9. Dan Marino
What? How did Marino end up at #9? This man should be in the top five. Honestly, people shouldn’t base quarterback’s careers on Super Bowl wins, but rather their skill level. That’s Marino’s case. His skill-level was sky-high, and set records for passing yards, touchdowns, and more at the time of his retirement. Way too low.
#8. Brett Favre
Analysis: Favre was an iron man. His consecutive start streak will likely never be beaten and he was the first quarterback in NFL history to throw for over 500 touchdown passes. But, he still had plenty of losing seasons, and interceptions were an issue. I’d place him at #9.
#7. Johnny Unitas
(BAL Colts) 1955-1972
Analysis: Perfect spot for Unitas, who had stats way ahead of his time. I’d say I like Unitas at #7.
#6. Roger Staubach
Analysis: Good grief, Staubach at #6? How on earth did he deserve 6? He’s placed above the likes of Unitas, Marino, and Favre. He was an amazing player indeed, but Gil, your bias is getting in the way.
#5. John Elway
Analysis: A good and long career for Elway ended in multiple Super Bowl wins with the elite Broncos of the 90’s. Elway deserves a spot in the top five.
#4. Otto Graham
Analysis: Part of the elite Browns of the 40’s and 50’s, Graham was ahead of his time in skills. He actually won championships for Cleveland (sounds odd to say). He should be a bit lower but remain in the top ten.
#3. Joe Montana
Analysis: Joe Cool was one of the most prolific passers in NFL history. Unlike Bradshaw and Aikman, Montana was elite, winning four Super Bowls with the 49ers. He should be at #2.
#2. Peyton Manning
Analysis: Somehow, Manning won a Super Bowl with two teams. That’s mind blowing. With how many pro bowls he’s made and MVP’s he has, it’s not surprising he’s at #2. But I personally think he should be lower somewhere in the top five.
#1. Tom Brady
Analysis: It’s not surprising to see Gil putting Brady at #1, and I actually agree. Having won five Super Bowls, making some of the most impossible comebacks in NFL history, and went from 6th rounder to Super Bowl champion, Brady may very well be the greatest NFL quarterback of all time.
Players Who Got Snubbed
Analysis: How on earth is the legendary Steve Young not on here? Sitting behind Joe Montana helped him develop into the player he was. Despite only winning one super bowl, he was still better than Jim Kelly and a lot of others on this list.
Analysis: Whether or not he should be on here is a mystery to a lot, but my unpopular opinion is that Fouts is better than Jim Kelly.
Analysis: His case is similar to Steve Young’s. Almost identical actually. Both were backups who sat behind all-time greats, and both rose to power and won one super bowl each.
Players That Shouldn’t be on the List
Analysis: Having lost four Super Bowls was tough, and he was elite, but I just don’t think he deserves a spot on here when Steve Young doesn’t make it.
Analysis: He gets credited too much for Dallas winning three Super Bowls under him. Sorry, the run game did more work.
Analysis: I explained this earlier. He just played for too many crappy teams.
My Version of the List
Okay Gil Brandt, here’s my version of your rankings.
#16. Dan Fouts (SD)
#15. Roger Staubach (DAL)
#14. Terry Bradshaw (PIT)
#13. Sammy Baugh (WAS)
#12. Fran Tarkenton (MIN, NYG)
#11. Aaron Rodgers (GB)
#10. Johnny Unitas (BAL, SD)
#9. Drew Brees (SD, NO)
#8. Brett Favre (ATL, GB, NYJ, MIN)
#7. Otto Graham (CLE)
#6. Steve Young (SF)
#5. John Elway (DEN)
#4. Dan Marino (MIA)
#3. Peyton Manning (IND, DEN)
#2. Joe Montana (SF, KC)
#1. Tom Brady (NE)
In conclusion, that list was filled with deserving quarterbacks and those who shouldn’t be there. I’ve expressed my opinion, and I know most of you have yours. Feel free to share your thoughts or rankings about the best quarterbacks in NFL history.
I believe it should be
#16 Steve Young
#15 Jim Kelly
#14 Aaron Rodgers
#13 Warren Moon
#12 Frank Tarkenton
#11 Sammy Baugh
#10 Johnny Unitas
#9 Otto Graham
#8 Brett Favre
#7 Drew Brees
#6 Rodger Stubach
#5 Dan Marino
#4 John Elway
#3 Tom Brady
#2 Peyton Manning
#1 Joe Montana - 2storm
Not too bad analysis other lists here's my Top 15 reranked
XV Sammy Baugh (The first well known established player who could do it all back than he could pass, he could kick, and he I believe could also play receiver wow Baugh is the man I gotta respect that)
XIV Otto Graham (Aside from Kosar this is Browns hailing achievement at QB was Otto Graham of the 40's eventually a few years later they get their legendary running back in Jim Brown.)
XIII Warren Moon (Everybody is gonna say Cam Newton, Michael Vick, or even Randall Cunningham, but those guys never would of existed if it wasn't for the original scrambler in Warren Moon also the original #1 as well)
XII Johnny Unitas (The original great Colt who is most infamous for his ''The Greatest Game Ever Played'' where it went into overtime and he does deserve for being recognized as a early seen clutch QB which is overused now.)
XI Jim Kelly (Buffalo's only great QB they will ever have in all honestly, the closest thing to winning a super bowl when it was all said and done, but in the end that franchise was cursed when they finally got their in the 90's)
X Steve Young (They say it couldn't be done nobody could replace Joe col, but my friend the first transcend the pioneered what Rodgers, and Garoppolo would follow if it was not for Young doing it first)
IX Roger Staubach (To me aside from maybe Troy Aikman a true Cowboy of that franchise that I believe anyone can look up to for Dallas's early great success that cannot be denied)
VIII Peyton Manning (Great in the regular season, man is he completely different in the postseason.)
VII Brett Favre (To me he is the Packer I grew up flawlessly beating the Lions entirely in his career not even Aaron Rodgers can say that anymore)
VI Dan Marino (The greatest QB to never win a super bowl carried an average team and managed to get them as far as he could upon his shoulders.)
V Drew Brees (He outdone Dan Marino in almost every single category, and to me is the second greatest player right now behind Tom Brady a true elite player at his position.)
IV Terry Bradshaw (4 super bowls, and never lost any of them is a great achievement)
III John Elway (2 rings, but man was he something the original elite general for years finally getting his two rings retiring on a sweetness note)
II Joe Montana (4 super bowls phenomenal in every single one of those)
I Tom Brady (5 rings the best most next to Charles Haley) - htoutlaws2012