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King Brady

ORIG POSTED ON 1/5/11

Tom Brady is the KingTom Brady is by far the greatest quarterback…ever.  Older fans and analysts will try and say Otto Graham or Sammy Baugh or one of those old timers were the best, but that was a different era, without facemasks.  They can’t sufficiently compare those players from back in the day.  If you’re talking about the modern era, it’s usually agreed upon that Joe Montana was the best and Peyton Manning is the aire to the throne, but I firmly disagree, it’s Brady, he’s the King, and here’s why…

TOM BRADY JOE MONTANA PEYTON MANNING
Super Bowl Wins 3 4 1
Playoff Record 14-4* 16-7 9-9*
Most Yards in Season 4,806 3,944 4,700
Most TDs in Season 50 31 49
Least INT in season 4 8# 9
Career stats(years played) 34,744 passing yards, 261 tds6 Pro-Bowls(’01-present) (9) 40,551 passing yards,273 tds8 Pro-Bowls

(’80-’94) (14)

’00 Hall of Fame

54,828 passing yards, 399 tds11 Pro-Bowls(’98-present) (12)
Top WR(career stats)(yrs played with QB) Deion Branch 5,797 yards451 receptions

34 Receiving tds

(’02-’05)(’10-present) (4)

0 Pro-Bowls

Jerry Rice 22, 895 yards 1,549 receptions

197 Receiving tds

(’85-’92) (7)

13 Pro-Bowls/’10 Hall of Fame

Marvin Harrison14,580 yards1,102 receptions

128 Receiving tds

(’98-’08) (10)

8 Pro-Bowls

Top RB(career stats)(yrs played with QB)

(Pro-Bowls)

Kevin Faulk3,550 yards, 16tds424 rec., 3,667yrds, 15tds

(’01-present) (9)

0 Pro-Bowls

Roger Craig8,189 yards, 56tds566 rec., 4,911 yds., 17tds(’83-’90) (7)

4 Pro-Bowls

Edgerrin James12,246 yds., 80tds433 rec., 3,364 yds., 11tds

(’99-’05) (6)

4 Pro-Bowls

Top Defensive Player(yrs played with QB)(Pro-Bowls) Tedi Bruschi’01-’08 (7)1 Pro-Bowl Ronnie Lott’81-’90 (9)10 Pro-Bowls/’00 Hall of Fame Dwight Freeney’02-present (8)6 Pro-Bowl

*prior to 2011 playoffs    #in 13 games

Wide Receivers:

Montana had arguably the greatest NFL player of all time to throw to, Jerry Rice.  Rice has the most touchdowns, receiving yards, receptions…ever.  Manning had a future hall of famer on target in Marvin Harrison.  When Harrison moved on, Manning had Reggie Wayne to fill in, and he’s a 5-time Pro-Bowler.  Brady’s best wide out has been Deion Branch, who has never had a season of 1,000 yards receiving.  Some may argue that Brady had Randy Moss.  He did.  In fact, Brady set the NFL All Time Passing Touchdown record (50) due to Moss, but Moss only lasted a little over three seasons.  Imagine if Brady had Moss for ten years in his prime, the exact duration Manning had Harrison, they’d have broken that record several times.  Wes Welker has provided a lot as well for Brady, but he wasn’t involved in any of Tom Brady’s Super Bowl wins, and has only had four full seasons with Brady, and less career yards than Branch (5,657).

Running Backs:

When you can’t pass, you can dump it off to your running back.  Brady has never had a more constant backfield mate than Kevin Faulk, playing nine years together and counting.  Faulk has rushed for a career 3,550 yards during his time with New England, a nice number, but it is 8,696 less rushing yards than Edgerrin James.  James spent six seasons behind Manning, was selected to four Pro-Bowls, and rushed for 12,246 yards in his career.  Once he went off to Arizona, the Colts filled in with Joseph Addai, a first round draft pick.  Montana also had a four-time all star in Roger Craig, who had over 13,000 total yards (rushing and receiving) in his career, and not to mention a pounding fullback in Tom Rathman.  Brady did have Antowain Smith and Corey Dillon for a total of six seasons, but between the two of them, they only produced two 1,000 yard seasons.

Defense:

Montana sat on the sidelines while Hall of Famer, Ronnie Lott, destroyed offensive opponents.  Lott, one of the most feared players of all time, a man who once cut off his own finger, was elected to 10 Pro-Bowls in his storied career.  Aside from Lott, Montana also had All-Pro Defensive End Charles Haley and manic linebacker Bill Romanowski as teammates.  Manning’s defensive teammates have included 2007 AP NFL Defensive Player of the Year, Bob Sanders, and future Hall of Fame Defensive End, Dwight Freeney.  Arguably the best defensive players with Brady tenure has been Tedy Bruschi, a great story, but a player only elected to 1 Pro Bowl, and strong safety, Rodney Harrison.  Harrison was a talented player, but only completed two full seasons with Brady and the Patriots, having had much more success with the San Diego Chargers.

In Closing:

Manning has had great statistical success, as well as team success, but his post season play is subpar, and currently he has the same amount of Super Bowl rings as his little brother…one.  I admire him for playing with just one franchise his whole career, but it makes sense since the Indianapolis Colts cater to his every whim.  In almost every draft, the Colts frequently use their 1st or 2nd round picks on receivers or running backs to assist Manning.  Addai, Donald Brown, and Anthony Gonzalez are just a few playmakers drafted in recent years, not to mention one of the league’s top TE’s, Dallas Clark.

Montana was an amazing player as well, and his 4-0 record in the Super Bowl is a tremendous feat, but I can’t imagine his success occurring without playmakers like Rice or Craig sharing the offense.  He never turned in high statistical numbers like Manning or Brady, and Steve Young shared very similar success once Montana jetted to the Kansas City Chiefs, and Young was named the starting quarterback.

Brady is my clear cut winner.  He is the King of Quarterbacks.  He was able to win without high caliber receivers and running backs, and the absence of dominant defensive players.  His playoff record surpasses Manning and Montana, and his statistical achievements are superb.  Not only that, but Brady has a winning percentage in head-to-head matchups with Manning, and I’m sure he’d have kicked Montana’s ass too if give the opportunity.  King Brady, 2011 Super Bowl MVP?

 

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  1. Roger
    January 12, 2011 at 9:38 pm

    I definitely agree with the Sports Minion on this one, although Montana never lost a Super Bowl & didn’t have Bill Belichick, Brady is far superior to Peyton Manning and Joe Montana

  2. February 8, 2011 at 12:23 pm

    Another good post here. As you know from reading my post about Manning (http://sports-glutton.com/2011/02/03/reggie-wayne-declares-manning-to-be-mortal/) I do agree with your premise that the modern day quarterback debate about the who is the greatest comes down to Brady and Montana. Both of these QB’s have/had that intangible “it” factor and perform(ed) at the highest levels at the most critical of times.

    I don’t necessarily disagree with your argument that Brady is the best, but I’ll play devil’s advocate for a moment. Brady led two game winning Super Bowl drives, but it was Adam Vinateri who technically won both of those games (and the third Super Bowl as well). Do we share the same opinion of Brady if one, two, or all three field goals are missed? Or does he become another Jim Kelly? Additionally, Brady hasn’t had the talent around him like Montana and Manning have, but Matt Cassel more than adequately replaced Brady for a season and the Patriots went 10-6. Is it the more about the system or the quarterback? Again not necessarily disagreeing with you, just presenting some thoughts for discussion.

    Overall, I think Brady could use one more Super Bowl victory before the end of his career. It would smooth over the loss to the Giants and recent playoff short comings.

    Nonetheless his is one of the great quarterbacks and I would take him on my team anyday.

    For more Brady love check out this post: http://howigit.wordpress.com/2011/02/02/tom-brady-for-all-you-haters/

    • February 8, 2011 at 2:58 pm

      Great point you bring up about Cassel, as I’ve never really thought about his success, especially after he didn’t play much (if at all) in college, what that says about Brady, I don’t know, but it is great topic for debate. I was certain Brady would get another ring this year, but I do think he’ll get at least one before he retires. Poor Jim Kelly.

  3. February 8, 2011 at 4:37 pm

    You’ve got a good comprehensive comparison here, and I really like that your brought receivers and running backs into it. I think that running backs are wayyyyyyy underrated in this comparison. A good running back can’t be ignored and opens up the receivers in an immeasurable way.

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