First, let’s start off with a very important point – there is no right or wrong answer when comparing Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers. If you prefer Brady/Gisele Bundchen, great. If you prefer Rodgers/Olivia Munn, that’s cool too. The only time you can start ruffling some feathers is by saying guys like Ben Roethlisberger and Andrew Luck deserve to be mentioned in the same breath.
Now that we’ve cleared that up, let’s take a look at why Brady and Rodgers both should (and shouldn’t) be considered the best quarterback in the NFL.
Tom Brady is angry. And an angry Tom Brady is a terrifying Tom Brady. Since football experts declared him deceased following last year’s 41-14 defeat against the Kansas City Chiefs, all Brady has done is claim his fourth Vince Lombradi Trophy and lead his team to a 16-2 record.
At 38-years-old, fans are starting to realize that this guy will be dominating the league when he’s 43. Still as accurate and strong as ever, Brady shows no signs of slowing down.
Flanked by the best tight end in the league in Rob Gronkowski and Wes Welker’s long lost identical twin, Julian Edelman, Brady has the Patriots clicking on all cylinders. Even at 3-0, analysts (ok, only Skip Bayless) are already making claims that this New England team has a great chance to finish the season undefeated.
Brady’s play has never been better, but it’s his postseason experience that draws universal praise from football fans. With a big game on the line, it’s hard to argue that there has ever been a quarterback as clutch as Brady.
21-8 in his playoff career, Brady’s competitiveness, unparalleled accuracy and on-field wits make him completely worthy of holding the title as the best quarterback in the NFL.
Have you seen the guy run? When Brady first entered the league, he clocked a 40-yard dash time of 5.28 seconds. Little did we know at the time, but Brady has actually managed to get even slower since we watched him huff and puff his way through the combine in 2000.
Brady’s negative amount of athleticism means quick developing plays have had to become the Patriots’ bread and butter. While New England has certainly figured out how to get around Brady’s fatal flaw, it’s a significant deficiency in a league that is constantly getting bigger, faster and stronger.
There has never been a quarterback who has managed to play the position more efficiently than Aaron Rodgers. With a career 4.14 touchdwon-to-interception ratio, Rodgers manages to make everything look easy.
Coming off last year’s MVP season, Rodgers appears to have elevated his play to another level. Through three games, Green Bay’s quarterback has thrown for 771 yards, 10 touchdowns and zero interceptions. Rodgers joined Peyton Manning (who did it in 2013) as the only other quarterback in NFL history to throw for double digit touchdowns and no picks through the first three games of a season.
In complete control of every situation on the field, Rodgers has incredible accuracy, which he pairs with one of the strongest arms in the league. As incredible as his throwing skills are, his athleticism is frequently overlooked. With the ability to escape pressure unlike Brady or Peyton Manning ever could, Rodgers has the ability to hurt a defense inside or outside of the pocket.
It’s now Rodgers’ eighth year as a starting quarterback in the NFL, and the other 31 teams still have absolutely no idea how to slow him down.
We have learned the only thing that can hamper Rodgers is his own body. The former Cal quarterback’s inability to stay healthy is the only knock on his professional career thus far.
Much like Peyton Manning, Rodgers has proven to be an incredible regular season performer, but that success hasn’t translated as well to the postseason. Until Rodgers captures multiple Lombardi Trophies, his name won’t be mentioned in the greatest of all-time debate. But at only 31-years-old and in the peak of his career, Rodgers has plenty of time to build on his legacy.
Both quarterbacks are too dominant to not be considered the best in the league. Rather than try to point out their weaknesses, we should be appreciating their sheer brilliance. If it were up to me, I’d take both and just let them trade off possessions.
Based on how the Green Bay Packers and New England Patriots have performed so far this season, Super Bowl 50 might offer exactly that.