Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Manning, Brady, Who's Better?

This last game against the greats of this era who define a generation of the importance of quarterback play was an instant classic. Manning was up 24-0 going into the 3rd quarter and Brady decided to show his capability of becoming the comeback kid once again. Extending Brady's record to 10-4 against the great Peyton Manning, the real question now becomes who has the better legacy? In a league where they have both left an indelible, emphatic mark on a game we now present as America's sweetheart, which player really does have the better legacy to walk into Canton with? The story is clearly not over but for now the argument can still take place at every water cooler in America.

I will make my case in this blog and you can run with it or you can leave with it with what ever opinion you want but let me be clear on something, if their careers ended today, it would be perfectly clear who the better player is.

The Case for Peyton Manning:

This guy, when it is all said and done, could be the greatest QB of all time. Statistically, Award wise, and could make some serious doe in the booth and become a great coach if he really set his mind to it. The guy has 4 MVP's, 12 Pro Bowl appearances, 6 All-Pro selections, 7 AFC Offensive player of the year awards, and the all important Super Bowl Trophy from Super Bowl XLI. He has lost 10 times to Tom Brady and has won the most recent Super Bowl, but he also lost a Super Bowl against the Saints when they were the favorites. People also forget that Peyton Manning in the Playoffs is absolutely dreadful; 9-11. Manning has had several seasons of playing behind some of the mid to low level defenses over the years, but has also had some of the best wide receivers in NFL History in Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne. He has made some players better in his career (Dallas Clark and Austin Collie are perfect examples) but he has had more weapons available to him throughout his entire career compared to Brady and what he has had around him.

The Case for Tom Brady:

This is the playmate player of the decade and definitely does not have the individual awards that Peyton has, but he has a much better resume when it comes to his championship pedigree. 2 MVP's, 8 Pro Bowl appearances, 2 All-Pro Selections, 3 AFC Offensive player of the year awards, and 3 Super Bowl championships (2 Super Bowl MVP's). He has lost 2 Super Bowl's to Eli Manning, but does have the record for the most playoff wins and has a 17-7 record in the Postseason. Tom Brady also holds the record for most Touchdowns in the regular season (50) and has another thing on Manning, having the lone undefeated regular season between the two (16-0; 2007). The year Brady had those 50 TD passes was the best year of Randy Moss's career where he broke the record for TD catches by a receiver, other than that, you can't really name more than 3 receivers off the top of your head that Brady has had as marquee targets (Wes Welker, Randy Moss, Rob Gronkowski, Aaron Hernandez? Troy Brown?). You can make the case that Brady has made many of his receivers and won his three Super Bowls with the receivers he created (except for the one Super Bowl where Branch won the Super Bowl MVP).

The case needs to be made for Brady, but believe me I have some stipulations. Right now, if the world burned to the core and we all melted, Brady is the better QB. Why? 3 Super Bowls, 16-0, 50 TD's, 10-4 against Peyton, and the fact he has the most Playoff Wins by any QB ever with 17. I will say one thing though, If Manning does break the TD record this season (which he is on pace of doing), and he wins the Super Bowl this season with 2 separate teams after the fact that he almost had to retire due to neck problems? That is when I will leap to the Manning band wagon. But for now (especially after this past game), Brady is in the lead... But down the stretch they come...

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