Monday, April 21, 2008

Running Quarterbacks and the Hall of Fame

In recent decades, several quarterbacks have been successful, productive players combining passing and rushing ability. Still, when some of those quarterbacks come up for Hall of Fame consideration, commentators tend to focus on the passing yards and ignore the rushing yards.

Today Peter King discusses Steve McNair's Hall of Fame case. He provides a lot of numbers, and shows that as a passer, McNair's numbers are relatively modest and are similar to Mark Brunell's numbers (and Brunell's not going to be a HOFer).

Peter King writes NOT ONE SINGLE WORD about Steve McNair's rushing. Steve McNair rushed for 3,590 yards (5.4 ypa) and 37 touchdowns. Can one discuss McNair's HOF resume without even mentioning his contributions as a runner? To talk soley about his passing numbers entirely INGORES a major area in which McNair impacted the game. The rushing numbers are also relevant to a comparision with Mark Brunell, a decent rushing QB that lags behind McNair with 2,433 (4.8 ypa) and 15 TDs.

I'm not sure whether or not Steve McNair should be a Hall of Famer. But I worry that HOF selectors have a limited approach when they consider the QBs that utilized passing and running to gain yards, pick up first downs, score touchdowns, and win games. If we are going to have a discussion about McNair as a potential Hall of Famer, we cannot entirely ignore one of his major assets: he helped his team by rushing as well as throwing.


  1. Anonymous12:32 PM

    Let's be honest here. Peter King, though well connected, doesn't know the first thing about football, and is hopelessly biased for and against certain players/organizations/coffees.

    It's ironic that he writes his column intending to be serious, while Simmons on ESPN means his to be funny, because generally Simmons has far more useful information. I read King's, on the other hand, generally for it's unintentional comedy.

    (In his mock draft he has the Viking's selecting a wide reciever with the 17th pick???)

  2. Not that I disagree with you about King's football knowledge, but the man is on the HOF committee, so whether or not he takes McNair's running skills into consideration will impact McNair's chances of getting into the HOF

  3. Anonymous4:12 PM

    ultimately statistics are fairly useless when discussing Steve Mcnair. I doubt Johnny Unitas has better stats with Frank Wycheck as his greatest offensive weapon. Still I think you're mostly right though when people talked Vick they tended to over rate the rushing. With Young I don't know how much the rushing stats were mentioned, but I doubt it was often.


  4. Anonymous3:26 PM

    I have been trying to get ahold of you. call me at work if you can before 4 or come up here and visit a bit