Friday, May 11, 2007

Today's Elite Quarterbacks

Offseason. Deal.

I believe there are three elite, top echelon quarterbacks in the NFL today. These are three QBs that at this point will always have their teams in contention, will always be leading teams to wins, will always be putting up superstar statistics, no matter what seems to be going on around them. I'm big on team wins and massive TD-INT ratios, just so you know.

Peyton Manning
Since 2002, Manning's Colts have won 10, 12, 12, 14, and 12 games. Manning has NEVER thrown for fewer than 26 touchdowns and 3,700 yards in a season. Never. He is the best of the best.

Tom Brady
Since Brady became the Patriots starter, the team has won 11, 9, 14, 14, 10, and 12 games. He's always had a winning record. They've been legitimate contenders for the Super Bowl in all but one of his years as starter. While leading his teams to wins, he's always thrown 12 or 14 interceptions in a season (sort of weird) and 23-28 TDs the last 5 seasons. The Pats will content for Super Bowls as long as he's there.

Carson Palmer
In my mind, Palmer ranks just below Peyton Manning as the stereotype ubermensch NFL stud quarterback. Big, strong arm, smart, always effective. It's early in his career, but based on his numbers the last two years (3,700, 32-12; 4,000, 28-13), I believe he's always going to be throwing 25+ TDs and keeping the Bengals in contention for the playoffs--and eventually more. You may not agree with my placement of Palmer in the top-3 NFL quarterbacks, but he is an utter stud at the position and in a year or two you will not question it.

There are three other QBs I consider a notch or two below these three. Here they are, and why.

Donovan McNabb
It is only because he failed to finish the last two seasons due to injury that I'm not listing four elite QBs. From 2000 to 2004, his teams won 11, 11, 12, 12, and 13 games. The last two years when McNabb got injured his team was still contending at the time. He's got a good team and organization around him, to be sure, but he's a playmaking stud. If he stays healthy, he is among the elites.

Matt Hasselbeck
Why Hasselbeck, you say? Because his teams have been to the playoffs four straight years. He's now a dependable quarterback that you expect to win; of course, he's not near Manning, Brady, or Palmer.

Drew Brees
I don't trust him to be a consistently dominant quarterback yet. In the last three seasons his teams have won 12, 9, and 10 games, and he's thrown 27, 24, and 26 TDs (with very few interceptions); he's good. Another year like last year, and I'll rank him with the best.


  1. Anonymous12:20 PM

    carson palmer was great in the playoffs last year.


  2. I have a lot of sympathy for players/teams that fail because of kicker shenanigans.

  3. RK-Yeah and I am sure the whole reason the Bengals didn't make the playoffs last year was because of Carson Palmer and not their horrible D at times. So far Carson Palmer's playoff numbers are 1-1 for 66 yards. He has shown that he is a playoff stud and who knows what might have been had he not blown his knee on that play. I honestly think we would be hailing Palmer as the 2006 Super Bowl champ and not Ben Roethlisberger.

    Joe-If your comment is in reaction to rk's comments I fail to see the connection. What does Palmer have to do with a team that fails because of kicker shenanigans?


  5. That really wasn't a kicker shenanigan though. The Long Snapper threw the ball wide of the holder and so Graham didn't even get to attempt to convert his 159th consecutive PAT. (all this info is from the recap of the game courtesy of ESPN after I looked at the Play-by-Play and noticed it said PAT aborted). Special Teams shenanigans maybe, but in no way is Shayne Graham responsible for that loss.

    That an given the fact that all they had to do was beat Pittsburgh the next week to make the playoffs and they couldn't do that I believe makes it even less of a factor (couldn't we all look at the various games of teams that fall one win short of the playoffs and blame various members of the team?). Maybe Carson does need a little polishing after looking back now and seeing they missed the playoffs because of a 0-3 finish. Who knows, all I know is Shayne Graham is not to blame. No "kicker" shenanigans there.

  6. I reserve the right to call any extra point shenanigans kicker shenanigans.

    In the last game against Pittsburgh, Palmer had 251 yards, 2 TDs, and 0 INTs.

    In the last two years, he had 6,700 yards, 60 TDs, and 25 INTs. His ypa were 7.5 and 7.8, and in his career he's completed 63.8% of his passes. His production is not going to change. He's a stud.