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NFL morning after: Peyton’s place in history

peytonwave AP

The list of players who have won at least five MVP awards in the major sports reads like a who’s who of the greatest athletes in history. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Wilt Chamberlain and Michael Jordan in the NBA. Gordie Howe and Wayne Gretzky in the NHL. Barry Bonds (perhaps with an asterisk) in Major League Baseball. And that’s it.

Peyton Manning, who almost certainly clinched the fifth Most Valuable Player award of his stellar NFL career, is about to join that list.

We could debate where Manning ranks among the all-time great quarterbacks in football history, but I almost think that’s too narrow a debate. Perhaps the discussion needs to be where Manning ranks among the great competitors in the history of sports.

Think about all Manning has accomplished. He’s already the only NFL player who has ever won four MVP awards. He already owns several NFL records and will most likely own every significant career passing record before he’s finished. In addition to his fifth MVP award this year, he’s also going to get his 13th Pro Bowl selection and his seventh first-team All-Pro selection and perhaps his eighth offensive player of the year award. Last year he added a comeback player of the year award to his trophy case. In college he was a first-team All-American and winner of the Sullivan Award as America’s greatest amateur athlete. In high school he was the national player of the year.

Manning broke the NFL record for touchdown passes in a season in Sunday’s win over the Texans, with his 51st touchdown pass of the year giving the Broncos their final score in an easy win. Next week he’s likely to break the NFL record for passing yards in a season, as the Broncos just need to beat the Raiders to secure home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs. They’re one win away from heading into the postseason as the favorites to come out of the AFC and go to the Super Bowl. But as I was watching that unfold on Sunday, I was thinking two somewhat contradictory things.

First, I was thinking that it’s undeniable how great Peyton Manning is. He’s been an American sports star since he was a teenager, and he’s the best player in the NFL today at age 37. He’s about to get his fifth MVP, and there are another few seasons when he had a good case for the award (including last year, when he came in second). He’s just consistently amazing.

But the second thing I was thinking is that, no matter how much he does individually, he won’t be remembered as the greatest ever if he doesn’t get a second Super Bowl ring. That’s not right — football is the ultimate team sport, and no one wins or loses alone — but that’s the way it is. If any team other than the Broncos is hoisting the Vince Lombardi Trophy on the first Sunday in February, this will be remembered as another year when Peyton Manning didn’t get it done.

To me, though, Manning’s place in history is secure. He’s the best quarterback who ever lived.

Manning was the player who impressed me most on Sunday. Below are some other thoughts:

Dallas has a badly coached defense. We’ve been talking all season about what a bad job Cowboys defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin is doing, and there are many examples of that, but I was particularly struck by how ill-prepared the Dallas defense was when Washington showed a new formation on Sunday. With Washington’s offense lining up four receivers to the left side early in the second half, the Dallas secondary didn’t know how to line up in coverage, and so they blew a timeout — and then Dallas gave up a touchdown pass two plays after that timeout. If your defense is wasting timeouts because you can’t figure out what the other team’s offense is doing, and if you can’t get your coverage straightened out even after you’ve called timeout, you’ve got serious problems. Firing Rob Ryan and hiring Kiffin was a huge mistake for the Cowboys.

Weird call that I liked: Longtime Jaguars center Brad Meester had never caught a pass in his NFL career, but because he was playing his last home game after announcing that he’ll retire at the end of the season, the Jags decided to call a trick play with Meester as an eligible receiver. Sure enough, Meester caught the pass and then made a nifty little move to run for a first down. The Jaguars have had a rough season, but they haven’t quit on coach Gus Bradley, and plays like that pass to Meester show why: Players enjoy playing for a coach who makes football fun, and what’s more fun than letting a 300-pound 36-year-old catch a pass?

Weird call that I disliked, Part 1: With the Broncos facing fourth-and-3 in Houston, the offense stayed on the field, and I liked that decision — Denver’s offense should be able to pick up three yards on Houston’s defense. But I hated the play they ran, with Peyton Manning throwing a short pass to tight end Julius Thomas, who was tackled for a two-yard gain. If you’re throwing on fourth down, throw past the line to gain.

Weird call that I disliked, Part 2: With the Titans facing fourth-and-goal in Jacksonville, the offense stayed on the field, and I liked that decision — you’ve got nothing to lose, why not go for it? But I hated the play they ran, with Ryan Fitzpatrick throwing it out the back of the end zone. If you’re throwing on fourth down, don’t throw it away.

Terron Armstead wasn’t ready. Armstead, the rookie left tackle inserted into the Saints’ starting lineup for the first time on Sunday, looked pretty much the way you’d expect a rookie from a small school like Arkansas-Pine Bluff to look in his first NFL start. The Saints have had problems on their offensive line all year, and I understand why Sean Payton wanted to see if Armstead could help protect Drew Brees’s blind side, but Armstead simply wasn’t up to the task. The Panthers’ pass rush terrorized Brees all day.

Luke Kuechly is amazing. The flip side of the Saints’ offense struggling is that the Panthers’ defense was incredible in Sunday’s win over New Orleans. Kuechly, the second-year linebacker, had an unbelievable day: His 24 tackles were tied for the most the NFL has ever recorded by one player in a game, since tackles began being tracked as a statistic in 1994. Kuechly also became the first player since Derrick Brooks to record 20 tackles and an interception in the same game.

How can teams play so badly, with so much on the line? The Bears entered Sunday night knowing a win would clinch the NFC North. They lost 54-11. The Ravens entered Sunday knowing that if they won out they’d make the playoffs. They lost 41-7. The Lions entered Sunday knowing they needed to win to stay alive. They lost at home to the woeful Giants. The Dolphins entered Sunday knowing that if they won out they’d make the playoffs. They were destroyed by the hapless Bills.

We have an exciting Week 17 ahead of us. Some years all of the top teams are locked into their playoff spots before the season’s final Sunday. But not this year. Only one team, the Chiefs, knows its playoff seed (No. 5 in the AFC). Every other contender still has something to play for. We’re going to see some great football on Sunday. Including, I expect, Peyton Manning to set a new NFL record for passing yards in a season while leading the Broncos to home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.

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103 Responses to “NFL morning after: Peyton’s place in history”
  1. tjacks7 says: Dec 23, 2013 6:51 AM

    Peyton – greatest of all time.

  2. sogooda says: Dec 23, 2013 7:01 AM

    It’s about team success. Montana and Brady edge Peyton to me.

  3. thegreatestofalltimes says: Dec 23, 2013 7:10 AM

    I’d say that:

    Peyton is a definite top-3 regular season QB of all-time.

    Peyton is not in the top-10 best playoff QBs of all-time:
    W-L-D 9-11-0, 481/761 for 5679yds (63.21%) 32 TD, 21 INT, 88.4 RAT, 1 Super Bowl win

    I’d say, just melting those two together puts him in the middle of a top-10 all-time QB list. Not too shabby :)

  4. blackqbwhiterb says: Dec 23, 2013 7:15 AM

    You wanna talk about Monte Kiffin’s defense- How bout 4th & 10 can Washington EVER call man-to-man coverage/ ” put a hat on a hat”, and not leave DeMarco Murray completely alone!!????? I knew it was going to happen when they settled for a FG to go up 23-14, not a TD to stretch the lead & take control…. Washington DOES need a whole new coaching staff, I could go on and on

  5. apkyletexas says: Dec 23, 2013 7:17 AM

    Some franchises build with a total focus on building the next championship contender (Giants, Steelers)

    Some franchises build with a total focus on piling up career stats for one player (Marino with the Dolphins, Manning with the Colts and now Broncos)

    Does it mean Manning is the Greatest of all-time? No – by all accounts, Joe Montana is still far and away the best ever. Best championship pedigree aligned with incredible statistical numbers. And, the guy completely changed the way the game was played. Manning, Marino, Favre and Brady have simply been the beneficiaries of the changes that Montana and Walsh instituted 30+ years ago.

  6. Indybear says: Dec 23, 2013 7:23 AM

    Sorry, not the greatest of all time. Great regular season stats, but losing playoff record. The King of the 4-yard TD pass will once again throw the inopportune pick to cost his team a shot at the prize. How many picks did Joe Montana throw in his 4 Super Bowl wins? Zero.

  7. clownsfan says: Dec 23, 2013 7:25 AM

    Peyton-G.O.A.T*

    *=Regular Season

  8. dirtdawg54 says: Dec 23, 2013 7:26 AM

    Peyton has played in 20 post-season games and has recorded a passing rating under his career average in 14 of them and has 21 picks in those games. Just go back to last year’s loss to the Ravens. Did the “team” throw that woeful interception that eventually cost them the game? No. Peyton did. No argument he’s the best ever during the regular season but during the playoffs it’s another story.

  9. truthfactory says: Dec 23, 2013 7:27 AM

    Mannings job as a QB is to put points on the board. No one does that, or has done that better than him.

    I’m sure it will all come down to the post-season again, but I suspect that if he has an “off” game (i.e. 285 yds and 2 tds), this Broncos team will lose by 10 in the playoffs. They’re really not “good” at any aspect of a football game other than their passing offense. We shall see what happens. Until then, congrats on taking your record back Peyton.

  10. dietrich43 says: Dec 23, 2013 7:34 AM

    Greatest does not necessarily mean, “put up the most statistics in his career.” The top 10 for yardage includes Drew Bledsoe and Vinny Testaverde. Vinny also shows up at 10 in career TDs. Is he one of the ten best QBs of all time?

  11. 8oneanddones says: Dec 23, 2013 7:37 AM

    Peyton Manning — Greatest of all time, but only if you exclude the postseason.

  12. wryly1 says: Dec 23, 2013 7:37 AM

    Peyton can upgrade his place in history when he has more postseason wins than Donovan McNabb.

  13. starderup says: Dec 23, 2013 7:39 AM

    If all the past, present and future quarterbacks were rolled up into one person, that one person still would not be as great as Peyton Manning, because his name would not be Peyton Manning.
    Yeah, I get it. The NFL should dissolve after this season, because it is impossible for anyone to ever achieve what Peyton has achieved.
    I hope you two have a wonderful life together.
    Jeez, next we’ll have Chuck Norris type jokes.
    Peyton Manning doesn’t throw the football.
    He orders it into the endzone, and no football can deny him his will.

  14. pastabelly says: Dec 23, 2013 7:42 AM

    Manning is the best regular season quarterbak of all time. When you combine regular seasons and post seasons, you move him behind Montana, Brady, and a few others. In football, greater emphasis is placed on post season. That’s just the way it is.

  15. guypatsfan says: Dec 23, 2013 7:51 AM

    Tom Brady is this year’s true MVP. He’s the reason the Patriots are currently the #2 seed, and if Denver loses next weekend they could wind up the #1 seed. Without Brady the Pats would be lucky to even be in the conversation for a wild-card berth. The Pats have been decimated by injuries to key players, yet thanks to Brady they keep winning. Manning deserves the Offensive Player of the Year award, but IMO he’s not the MVP, Brady is.

  16. dac458 says: Dec 23, 2013 8:00 AM

    Who know with all these records being broken quite frequently now with these new rules favoring offenses. It really makes you think how good of a passer Marino was and the numbers he would have put up today.

    The best qb play I have seen in the last 10 years has to be with the top three in Rodgers, Brady, and Manning.

    And although Manning will surely get the TD record and possibly passing record I think Rodgers’s 2011 season was the best of the three followed by Brady’s 07 campaign and Manning’s this year.

    Rodgers that year was flat out in the zone for 14 games of the 16 and the final game he didn’t even play and ofcourse that would have been different if they were still in contention for a perfect season ala Brady. That’s the one knock Brady has that the other two don’t. Week in week out he had to take everyone’s best shot and they only get tougher after week 10 as everyone’s gunning for you.

    Rodgers 45 Td’s to only 6 int with the highest passer rating of 122.5 in 15 games and Brady’s 50 Td’s to 8 ints with the first and only 16-0 regular season were incredible. Manning should hit 53-55 and is at 10 ints and may stay there or add one to that list is another incredible year for a guy at 37 and coming off injury. But the only knock that I find is that this years Broncos team will have all the offensive records yet they had only to play three teams with a winning percentage above 500 and they could only beat one team twice and that was the Cheifs.

    The best pure qb play in one season I have seen in recent memory has got to be Rodgers 11 season.

  17. briscocountyjr says: Dec 23, 2013 8:00 AM

    sogooda says:
    Dec 23, 2013 7:01 AM

    “It’s about team success. Montana and Brady edge Peyton to me.”

    ————————–

    That’s pretty contradictory. Manning needs help on the defensive side of the ball for one. Montana did good things and paired his talent with not only one of the best coaches, but least amount of parity in the NFL. Similar to Montana, Brady has enjoyed one of the best contemporary coaches in the game.

    Can we say those things about Manning? No, as a matter of fact, everyone is quick to call him the coach on the field.. because there hasn’t been stellar coaching to drive his talent the same way as those two. His accomplishments are amazing.

  18. jersey73 says: Dec 23, 2013 8:13 AM

    I’ll repeat this again. The three Superbowls that the Patriots won, Tom Brady was the third most important aspect of the team (behind his defense and running game.) EVERY TIME Peyton was the most important aspect of his team.

    Amazingly, once the Patriots went to that setup (QB in Brady being the most important part of the team), they haven’t won the Superbowl and have looked human in the post-season.

  19. torqueolo says: Dec 23, 2013 8:14 AM

    I agree that Super Bowl wins are a team stat and to judge QBs on number of rings is short-sighted.

    However it’s equally moronic to use that as a reason to ignore what happened in all those failed postseasons; it’s not like Peyton was the same ol’ Peyton and his defense just couldn’t stop anyone, time and time again he has played poorly with the season on the line. Heck, the one time they did win it all, they were carried by the defense: remember that no touchdown game in Baltimore? The Super Bowl? Either that or he needed an assist from the refs (face-guarding) and Reche Caldwell, when he actually showed up for a game.

  20. kwgator says: Dec 23, 2013 8:15 AM

    If there wasn’t the playoffs, then Peyton would be the greatest.

  21. jnbnet says: Dec 23, 2013 8:15 AM

    As a Patriot fan, I want to congratulate Maning. Job well done. I love watching him, unless he is playing aginst the Patriots. Hope we have another three or four years of Maning/Brady.

  22. 2001asterisk2003asterisk2004asterisk says: Dec 23, 2013 8:17 AM

    Manning has compiled his numbers the right way, i.e. Not benefited from a team and coach that cheat.

  23. filthymcnastyog says: Dec 23, 2013 8:28 AM

    The Record Will Be Broken Again In The Very Near Future. Just A Fact Of Todays NFL. Probably Be Broken By Brady Next Year And Then Andrew Luck Soon After That.

  24. jaxcliff says: Dec 23, 2013 8:28 AM

    Not even top 10. Great players don’t disappear every time the pressure’s on. Manning chokes EVERY time in big games, going all the way back to his disappearing acts in every Florida-Tennesee game. The only reason he has a Super Bowl win is the defense carrying him though yet another pedestrian postseason. His only other appearance, what happens? When the game was on the line, he throws a pick-6.

  25. vcupats says: Dec 23, 2013 8:40 AM

    In 2007, Tom Brady broke the TD record in an exciting road game against the would-be SB champs while securing the first and only 16-0 regular season. In 2013, Peyton Manning broke the TD record with a meaningless garbage-time throw against arguably the worst team in football in hopes that he wouldn’t have to bother with it in Oakland next week.

    You think Peyton would have traded one of those 4 TD’s in Houston for another one in the Pats or Colts games?

  26. flash1283 says: Dec 23, 2013 8:54 AM

    jersey73 says: Dec 23, 2013 8:13 AM

    I’ll repeat this again. The three Superbowls that the Patriots won, Tom Brady was the third most important aspect of the team (behind his defense and running game.) EVERY TIME Peyton was the most important aspect of his team.

    Amazingly, once the Patriots went to that setup (QB in Brady being the most important part of the team), they haven’t won the Superbowl and have looked human in the post-season.

    That called revisionist history!

    Maybe you can say that about the first SB , except for the last drive.

    But the second one vs Carolina, there wasn’t any D played by either team after the first 10 minutes of that game, Brady went for over 350 yards and set a SB record at the time for most completions.

    In the third one Philadelphia that game went back and forth until the 4Q when Brady threw led them down the field to take a 21-14 lead.

  27. bobleblah says: Dec 23, 2013 8:57 AM

    Manning may be “the best” but

    Joe is still the greatest

  28. apkyletexas says: Dec 23, 2013 8:57 AM

    Brady should not be in this conversation. The 3 Super Bowls his team won were during years that they knowingly cheated, and were eventually caught red-handed because one of their own former assistants turned them in for cheating.

    Brady is clearly a superior QB who can make nearly all the throws, but you can only realistically look at his post-SpyGate revelation years to judge him. And by that standard, he’s not any better of a clutch performer than Peyton, with 2 Super Bowl losses and several home playoff losses.

    Brady goes to the playoffs a lot by virtue of having played his whole career in the worst division in football, but that shouldn’t vault him into any consideration as the best of all time.

  29. flash1283 says: Dec 23, 2013 8:59 AM

    jersey73 says: Dec 23, 2013 8:13 AM

    I’ll repeat this again. The three Superbowls that the Patriots won, Tom Brady was the third most important aspect of the team (behind his defense and running game.) EVERY TIME Peyton was the most important aspect of his team.

    “EVERY TIME Peyton was the most important aspect of his team.”

    Really!!!!! The ONE SB Manning has his playoff run and SB he had 2TD’S and 7 INT’S

    It was his D that stepped up that season and Adam V. kicking 5 FG vs Baltimore. Zero Td’s from Manning in that game.

    But “Peyton was the most important aspect of his team.” WHATEVER!!!!!!!

  30. 1rockyracoon says: Dec 23, 2013 9:04 AM

    Peyton isn’t even the best QB right now (Brady). The NFL MVP award is a QB award. How many post season awards does he have? How many times did his teams go one and done in the playoffs (even when they were the favorites)? He can’t touch Jordan’s or Gretsky’s success. He can’t even touch Brady’s success.

  31. poiuyt7 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:06 AM

    Most of you aren’t old enough to remember Johnny Unitas or Bart Starr. They could really direct an offense. And they called their own plays too.

  32. flash1283 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:07 AM

    jersey73 says: Dec 23, 2013 8:13 AM

    I’ll repeat this again. The three Superbowls that the Patriots won, Tom Brady was the third most important aspect of the team (behind his defense and running game.) EVERY TIME Peyton was the most important aspect of his team.

    AND if you are going to try and make that argument then you have to include Montana in that

    He won 4 SB’s and each year he won his D was ranked #5 or better in the NFL for that season and also had a RB in the top 10 each of those seasons.

  33. weepingjebus says: Dec 23, 2013 9:23 AM

    Peyton Manning is a QB who will throw 5 TDs in a meaningless game, and then choke like a sick dog when it matters (e.g., against the Patriots this year). Losing record in the playoffs, most of the losses being 1-and-dones, with the odds high it’ll happen again this year. It’s also funny how when Brady threw 50 TDs he was just an “overrated system QB” but when Peyton squeaks by it thanks to even looser WR rules he’s the greatest ever or something.

    He’s not. All numbers, no wins. Brady just clinched his 11th division title. 11!

  34. noah81398 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:24 AM

    Last time I checked, MVP stands for Most Valuable Player.

    How, in any way, is Peyton the MVP? Almost positive if you put any decent QB in his position they would be winning games just like Peyton, and they would probably win a playoff game as well (Ex: Tim Tebow, and he didn’t even have J Thomas or Welker)

    I understand that he is 37 and has neck issues and he’s doing this, but he is throwing it to Pro-Bowl caliber receivers. Tom Brady is 36 and he is throwing it to toddlers.

    Also, the Broncos haven’t really suffered any MAJOR injuries, excluding Von Miller, in case he does have a torn ACL. Tom Brady’s team is depleted on both sides, missing their best defensive player and offensive player (besides Brady). The fact that they are the second seed is almost dumbfounding. But somehow no one is even making a case for Brady.

  35. flash1283 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:24 AM

    Brady goes to the playoffs a lot by virtue of having played his whole career in the worst division in football, but that shouldn’t vault him into any consideration as the best of all time.

    Actually the “worst division in the AFC since Brady has been the starting QB is the AFC South, based on W/L record and playoff appearances from teams in those divisions not named the Colts or Patriots.

    oh and you another QB that benefited from playing in the “worst division” in there conference?

    Joe Montana.

    Again the revisionist history is comical when it comes to the Brady haters coming up with the excuses NOT to give Brady credit.

    Every thing they say about Brady as far as “it was his D” or “running game” you can say all that about Montana. 4 SB, his D was ranked top 5 or better each of those seasons and always had a top 10 running game.

  36. grogansheroes says: Dec 23, 2013 9:25 AM

    001asterisk2003asterisk2004asterisk says:
    Dec 23, 2013 8:17 AM
    Manning has compiled his numbers the right way, i.e. Not benefited from a team and coach that cheat.
    ———————————————–
    Depends on what you mean by cheating. Turning up the heat in the dome, or pumping in crowd noise. And that’s just what we know. Just because they weren’t caught doing something else, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.

  37. Chuck Norris says: Dec 23, 2013 9:26 AM

    Comparing 2007 Brady vs 2013 Manning fails to do something important, compare it against their respective opponents. I put together a comparison using their opponents rankings in pass defense. In 2007 Brady played (average of their opponents) the 14th ranked defense every week. He had 6 games versus a top 10 defense, 4 games versus a top 5 defense, and 3 games versus a bottom 10 defense.

    Manning this year has played an average defense of 21st. 1 game against a top 10 defense, 1 game against a top 5 defense, and 6 games against a bottom 10 defense.

    Looks to me like Brady had to play a significantly higher percentage of his games against top defenses, where Manning has been dissecting garbage defense, just saying

    2007 Patriots 2013 Broncos
    Jets (2) 9th Chargers (2)29th
    Bills (2) 29th Chiefs (2)24th
    Dolphins (2) 4th Raiders (2)26th
    Chargers 14th Ravens 11th
    Bengals 26th Giants 13th
    Browns 24th Eagles 30th
    Cowboys 13th Cowboys 31st
    Redskins 16th Jaguars 20th
    Colts 2nd Colts 12th
    Eagles 18th Redskins 23rd
    Ravens 20th Patriots 19th
    Steelers 3rd Titans 10th
    Giants 11th Texans 4th

  38. peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:29 AM

    apkyletexas says: Dec 23, 2013 7:17 AM

    Some franchises build with a total focus on building the next championship contender (Giants, Steelers)

    Some franchises build with a total focus on piling up career stats for one player (Marino with the Dolphins, Manning with the Colts and now Broncos)

    Does it mean Manning is the Greatest of all-time? No – by all accounts, Joe Montana is still far and away the best ever. Best championship pedigree aligned with incredible statistical numbers. And, the guy completely changed the way the game was played. Manning, Marino, Favre and Brady have simply been the beneficiaries of the changes that Montana and Walsh instituted 30+ years ago.

    Bill Walsh’s West Coast offense changed the way the game was played, not Joe Montana. Montana was a great QB for that system. However, Steve Young was arguably just as good, if not better, then Montana at running that offense.

    Contrary to Montana, Marino, Farve, Manning, Brees and Brady are all classic pocket passers with big arms that didn’t need to rely on an offensive system to thrive.

  39. kellyb9 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:34 AM

    Manning will win the mvp, as he should, but Brady was out by the 4th quarter in most games during their 2007 run. People forget that. For my money, that was the single greatest season by a QB ever.

  40. gisellichek says: Dec 23, 2013 9:38 AM

    This last decade plus… football fans have been lucky to have perhaps two of the greatest QBs playing at the same time and for very long careers… I don’t think that we can truely put what we are seeing into perspective until we have the benefit of hindsight. When both Brady and Peyton M have retired and we have their entire body of work to compare, will we know for sure. I will say this … in my opinion I don’t think we will see anything like this ever again in the NFL… This game of oneupmanship with the record books is not over.

  41. kastout11 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:40 AM

    Peyton is the best QB I have ever seen. Brady might have more rings, but Peyton is better. People point out his losing playoff record, but the rest of the team was terrible, and he was the only reason those teams even made the playoffs.

  42. favrewillplay4ever says: Dec 23, 2013 9:42 AM

    Put him right wit FAVRE statistically. Great regular season numbers… But a playoff choker through and through.

  43. gatorsandsteelerssuckbigblackclocks says: Dec 23, 2013 9:42 AM

    Kinda surprised to hear arguments against Peyton being the best all-time. Sure Brady has more rings, and that is important in this discussion although Bradshaw and Roethlisberger both have multiple rings and I think we can all agree neither would hold a candle in this discussion. No other qb has struck more fear in defenses or defensive coaches. Peyton, hands down, best ALL-TIME.

  44. thegronk87 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:44 AM

    Brady went 16-0 with a much more difficult schedule. Peyton is going to be 13-3.

  45. jjrs89 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:54 AM

    Ill take Brady in January everytime. Let’s see how all this GOAT talk fares in a couple weeks after Manning is bounced from the playoffs again.

  46. peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:56 AM

    noah81398 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:24 AM

    Last time I checked, MVP stands for Most Valuable Player.

    How, in any way, is Peyton the MVP? Almost positive if you put any decent QB in his position they would be winning games just like Peyton, and they would probably win a playoff game as well (Ex: Tim Tebow, and he didn’t even have J Thomas or Welker)

    I understand that he is 37 and has neck issues and he’s doing this, but he is throwing it to Pro-Bowl caliber receivers. Tom Brady is 36 and he is throwing it to toddlers.

    Also, the Broncos haven’t really suffered any MAJOR injuries, excluding Von Miller, in case he does have a torn ACL. Tom Brady’s team is depleted on both sides, missing their best defensive player and offensive player (besides Brady). The fact that they are the second seed is almost dumbfounding. But somehow no one is even making a case for Brady.

    ………………………………………………………………………..
    Because you could argue that the team’s defense, not Brady, has been the team’s MVP; look at yesterday’s game, for example.Brady was pedestrian, even borderline awful. But the Pats won running away because of their defense. That has happened a lot this year.

    If Manning does not have a great game, the Broncos lose. That is a proven fact. To me, that is why Manning should be the MVP.

    Plus, I get frustrated hearing that Manning was always fortunate to have All-Pro talent around him. Considering the amount of success Manning has had over his career, don’t you think it’s possible that it was Manning’s talent that elevated his receivers to All-Pro status?

    Also, “the Brady is surrounded by a lack of talent” card is getting a little tired. Pats fans love to talk about how great a coach Belichick is for building a successful team with a lot of middle to late round talent and undrafted FAs. However, Pats fans this year complain that Brady has been hurt by the lack of talent at the skill position. Well, whose fault is that, exactly?

    Finally, all the Pats fans I know were glad to get rid of Welker because they thought Amendola was an upgrade. How is it that you miss Welker all of a sudden?

  47. fatguystrangler says: Dec 23, 2013 9:57 AM

    I’ve been a Peyton fan over half my life to this point. Hell, one of my friends still rips me for guaranteeing he’d win the Heisman in 97. He’s clearly one of the greatest players, regardless of position, in football history. All I know is it’s going to be an end of an era when him and Brady are both retired. We should not be taking their careers for granted. I don’t know who best QB ever is. IMO, the top 4 includes Manning, Montana, Unitas, and Brady, in some order. I can’t even name a 5th person, as there’s so many worthy. As for MVP, Shady McCoy and J. Charles should get a few votes, at least.

  48. gazinkus says: Dec 23, 2013 9:58 AM

    I for one am tired of people constantly judging QB’s by wins, playoff wins, or SB wins. Teams win or lose, not QB’s. Football is a team game, and you can have Jesus H. Christ as your starting QB, but if the rest of the team sucks – you go nowhere.

    You bemoan this point, yet you (this website) are part of the problem. STOP referring to QBs’ win or loss records. Just stop it. It makes sense to refer to their completion %, their TD/INT ratio, maybe even their running or passing yards or how many times they fumble. It makes sense to refer to them as members of a winning or losing team. It is patently unfair to say that “Peyton won that game” or “Stafford lost” or “Romo sucks in December”. Last I checked, there were at least 52 other players out there that had a part in the wins or losses.

    To wit: You rack Monte Kiffin for his defense. Do you realize that they’ve gone through 18 defensive linemen since preseason, that only one of the starting LB’s played this last game, or one of the starting DB’s was on the couch three weeks ago or the top DE on the couch week 1? Another DB is a rookie and was buried on the depth chart week 1? They’re doing an amazing job getting a patchwork collection of players to stop anything, much less a pro offense. It’s hard to blame all that on Kiffin, or even on Jerry Jones (injuries have devastated the D this year, not bad personnel decisions), much less pin losses on Tony Romo because he can’t throw enough TD’s to offset those given up by the D. Yet, people do.

    Rob Ryan had injuries to deal with, too, but nothing like this. His defense was disorganized, too complex for the subs to handle, and generally incapable of stopping anything. Even on the plays you mention, the Dallas D this year has figured things out and done the best they could with what they have.

  49. fnf417 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:01 AM

    I agree he is in the top 3 all-time in the regular season but in the playoffs i would be going with someone else maybe they win the Bowl this year but I’m betting against it

  50. harveyredman says: Dec 23, 2013 10:13 AM

    Peyton needs to show up for a Superbowl run to be considered the GOAT. Waaaaaay too many one and ones (while being the #1 0r #2 seed playing at home) to be a serious contender for anything other than a regular season hero.

    People making a case for Peyton being the GOAT are akin to people saying Tebow “just wins”. Both fans have to ignore some glaring facts to believe what they do.
    WRT to Peyton, he (very) often saves his worst game for the playoffs – is that really what you expect from the GOAT?! C’mon, man…

  51. peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:21 AM

    weepingjebus says: Dec 23, 2013 9:23 AM

    Peyton Manning is a QB who will throw 5 TDs in a meaningless game, and then choke like a sick dog when it matters (e.g., against the Patriots this year). Losing record in the playoffs, most of the losses being 1-and-dones, with the odds high it’ll happen again this year. It’s also funny how when Brady threw 50 TDs he was just an “overrated system QB” but when Peyton squeaks by it thanks to even looser WR rules he’s the greatest ever or something.

    He’s not. All numbers, no wins. Brady just clinched his 11th division title. 11!

    ————————————————————

    I think you are inflating the argument people have made (myself included) that Brady’s 2007 season was the result of a “perfect storm” of offensive talent on that team. Considering Brady and the Pats never came close to that kind of offensive production before and haven’t since, I think this is a fair argument.

    Also, I don’t think this is the same thing as saying Brady is an overrated system QB. I think any reasonable Brady critic would agree that the man has too much talent to make such a claim. I think he is one of the best QBs of all time (and I hate the Pats).

  52. noah81398 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:24 AM

    peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 9:56 AM

    Because you could argue that the team’s defense, not Brady, has been the team’s MVP; look at yesterday’s game, for example.Brady was pedestrian, even borderline awful. But the Pats won running away because of their defense. That has happened a lot this year.

    If Manning does not have a great game, the Broncos lose. That is a proven fact. To me, that is why Manning should be the MVP.

    Plus, I get frustrated hearing that Manning was always fortunate to have All-Pro talent around him. Considering the amount of success Manning has had over his career, don’t you think it’s possible that it was Manning’s talent that elevated his receivers to All-Pro status?

    Also, “the Brady is surrounded by a lack of talent” card is getting a little tired. Pats fans love to talk about how great a coach Belichick is for building a successful team with a lot of middle to late round talent and undrafted FAs. However, Pats fans this year complain that Brady has been hurt by the lack of talent at the skill position. Well, whose fault is that, exactly?

    Finally, all the Pats fans I know were glad to get rid of Welker because they thought Amendola was an upgrade. How is it that you miss Welker all of a sudden?

    ——————————————-

    What pats fans that you know would say Amendola is an upgrade from Welker? Every pats fan I know knew we weren’t getting an upgrade. And secondly, I never said I missed Welker. Belichick yells at practice, Welker couldn’t handle it, oh well.

    And I love that “they won because of their defense, like always” comment. You must be joking, Have you watched a Patriot game this year? Our defense is atrocious. We got two defensive TD’s yesterday because Tyrod Taylor was in the game. The pick six was also borderline unnecessary, i’m amazed Beichick didn’t run out their and tackle Wilson himself. What a sight that would have been.

  53. brazzz01 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:31 AM

    The statement “Brady is an overrated system QB” is an admission of ignorance and lack of knowledge about the sport.

    Nothing more. Nothing less…

    Why fans would want to thump their chests and proclaim their ignorance about a topic is comically bizarre….

  54. brazzz01 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:33 AM

    As for Manning… great accomplishment, no doubt about it. Proven that he can bring it to another level on two teams, an opportunity Tom will likely never have.

    Hopefully we are treated to another Brady/Manning game in a few weeks.

  55. brazzz01 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:34 AM

    And I love that “they won because of their defense, like always” comment.

    —-
    When the Pats win: Brady should get no credit. It’s always the coach, system, defense, kicker, cheating, refs, etc.

    When the Pats lose: Brady choked. HE lost the game. It’s his fault.

    Sound logic.

  56. flash1283 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:38 AM

    Because you could argue that the team’s defense, not Brady, has been the team’s MVP; look at yesterday’s game, for example.Brady was pedestrian, even borderline awful. But the Pats won running away because of their defense. That has happened a lot this year.

    look at yesterday’s game, for example.Brady was pedestrian, even borderline awful.

    Really was he that bad? he had a QB rating of almost 90, not sure how that is “Brady was pedestrian, even borderline awful. ”

    “Pats won running away because of their defense. That has happened a lot this year. ”

    Really!!!!! It happened a lot this year? There D is ranked last vs the run and bottom half vs the pass.
    (a lot to to with big injuries) but people complain when fans say that.

  57. sidepull says: Dec 23, 2013 10:40 AM

    I take Montana overall. A QB that was outstanding from a time long ago when the qb position was not afforded the luxury of wearing skirts. I don’t think Manning would be playing at all right now as they would have ripped his big head off his neck long ago.

    Brady is better. Better closer, better at collecting rings, better at playing in terrible conditions, better at playing with less. He is just better. Montana, Brady and then maybe Manning. Have at it. I don’t care. Its just not Manning.

  58. peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:41 AM

    What pats fans that you know would say Amendola is an upgrade from Welker? Every pats fan I know knew we weren’t getting an upgrade. And secondly, I never said I missed Welker. Belichick yells at practice, Welker couldn’t handle it, oh well.

    And I love that “they won because of their defense, like always” comment. You must be joking, Have you watched a Patriot game this year? Our defense is atrocious. We got two defensive TD’s yesterday because Tyrod Taylor was in the game. The pick six was also borderline unnecessary, i’m amazed Beichick didn’t run out their and tackle Wilson himself. What a sight that would have been.

    ———————————————————-
    I live in Massachusetts, so to name you all the Pats fans I know would be terribly time consuming. If you don’t believe me when I see they were almost unanimously in agreement that Amendola was an upgrade over Welker, that’s your prerogative.

    Has the defense been bad in some games? Yes, it has. And when that happened the offense was there to pick up the slack. However, the reason the Pats won yesterday was due to the fact that their defense completely shut down the Ravens offense. Also, I think you have to admit that in more than a few games the offense has not performed well, and when that has happened the defense was there to bail them out.

    The Pats as a team are greater than the sum of their parts. They are 12-4 because when one side of the ball is struggling, the other side has more often than not picked up the slack. It’s a compliment to the coaching staff and the players, Brady included, that they are able to do this on such a consistent basis. I don’t know why Pats fans take this fact as an insult. As a Broncos fan, I am jealous. I wish Manning didn’t have to carry his team the way he does.

  59. tdonn says: Dec 23, 2013 10:46 AM

    apkyletexas says:

    Brady should not be in this conversation. The 3 Super Bowls his team won were during years that they knowingly cheated, and were eventually caught red-handed because one of their own former assistants turned them in for cheating.

    You realize that the infraction they were fined for in the first game of 2007 was LEGAL in previous years.

    You know that it was a matter of WHERE they were filming from, not that they were filming, as that is legal and all 32 teams continue to do it.

    So your opinion that Brady doesn’t belong in this conversation really shouldn’t be taken seriously…

    You do see why, right???

  60. brazzz01 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:47 AM

    As a Broncos fan, I am jealous. I wish Manning didn’t have to carry his team the way he does.

    Tebow won 8 games and a playoff game with that same team. Start Osweiler for a season and it’s not unreasonable to expect the same production.

    Take Brady off the 2013 Pats and right now they’re trying to figure out what number to give Clowney next year.

  61. tdonn says: Dec 23, 2013 10:51 AM

    peymax1693 says:

    Brady’s 2007 season was the result of a “perfect storm” of offensive talent on that team. Considering Brady and the Pats never came close to that kind of offensive production before and haven’t since…

    ???????????????

    You need to look up the Pats 2011 season ;)

  62. peytonwantsaflag says: Dec 23, 2013 10:53 AM

    Peyton is terrific and a pleasure to watch but these conversations are ultimately useless – there’s too many criteria.

    I will say this though Manning’s lucky his career started when it did and not a couple years later. With the current state of the click-for-pay, hyper-sensationalistic, snark-inducing media there will never, ever be another player, in any sport, that will be able to be called the greatest at anything. They will be torn to pieces before they ever get to that point.

  63. All-American Voltron says: Dec 23, 2013 11:04 AM

    I’m sorry but MVP’s, Pro Bowls, and All-Pro’s are all votes from people. That is not an actual accomplishment to win a popularity contest. I believe Neil Rackers was once voted sexiest NFL player, does that make him the greatest kicker of all time?

    Point to Peyton’s stats all you want, but don’t use a vote award as evidence of anything, other than as proof that the media voters really dug him.

  64. noah81398 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:05 AM

    I live in Massachusetts, so to name you all the Pats fans I know would be terribly time consuming. If you don’t believe me when I see they were almost unanimously in agreement that Amendola was an upgrade over Welker, that’s your prerogative.

    Has the defense been bad in some games? Yes, it has. And when that happened the offense was there to pick up the slack. However, the reason the Pats won yesterday was due to the fact that their defense completely shut down the Ravens offense. Also, I think you have to admit that in more than a few games the offense has not performed well, and when that has happened the defense was there to bail them out.

    The Pats as a team are greater than the sum of their parts. They are 12-4 because when one side of the ball is struggling, the other side has more often than not picked up the slack. It’s a compliment to the coaching staff and the players, Brady included, that they are able to do this on such a consistent basis. I don’t know why Pats fans take this fact as an insult. As a Broncos fan, I am jealous. I wish Manning didn’t have to carry his team the way he does.

    …………………………………………………………….

    I’m not doubting you know Pats fans that thought we were getting an upgrade. Not to be rude, but they were probably in denial. I live about an hour outside of Foxboro, and all im trying to say is the opinion here was in strong favor of a downgrade.

    Other than that, can’t really argue with you. Except for your last sentence. Totally in agreement with brazz01. You start Osweiler, and you can expect similar success. Yes, Manning makes the receivers better, but they are not exactly stiffs. They are physical and athletic, and just need someone who can put the ball where it needs to be. Peyton does that, but x10.

  65. peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:08 AM

    lash1283 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:38 AM

    Because you could argue that the team’s defense, not Brady, has been the team’s MVP; look at yesterday’s game, for example.Brady was pedestrian, even borderline awful. But the Pats won running away because of their defense. That has happened a lot this year.

    look at yesterday’s game, for example.Brady was pedestrian, even borderline awful.

    Really was he that bad? he had a QB rating of almost 90, not sure how that is “Brady was pedestrian, even borderline awful. ”

    “Pats won running away because of their defense. That has happened a lot this year. ”

    Really!!!!! It happened a lot this year? There D is ranked last vs the run and bottom half vs the pass.
    (a lot to to with big injuries) but people complain when fans say that.

    ——————————————————————
    14-26 (54%) for 172 yards and 1 TD is pedestrian. And yes, he looked awful on some throws. There were at least 3 throws he made where he short-hopped his receivers by 5 yards. If you think Brady had a good game by anyone’s standards, then we will have to just disagree.

    It was their D won the game for them yesterday. Just like it was their D that kept them in the Saints game and the Broncos game and gave their offense a chance to come back. The D also shut out the Dolphins in the second-half in the game at Gillette and gave the offense a chance to come back. Has the D performed poorly in some games? Of course, just like the offense has. However, given all the injuries the D has suffered, I think the overall performance this year has been pretty damn good.

  66. thegronk87 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:10 AM

    Head to head: brady 11 wins, peyton 4 wins

  67. stevescars says: Dec 23, 2013 11:11 AM

    I don’t buy the ring argument. Dan Marino is the best pure passer of all time.

  68. peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:16 AM

    brazzz01 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:47 AM

    As a Broncos fan, I am jealous. I wish Manning didn’t have to carry his team the way he does.

    Tebow won 8 games and a playoff game with that same team. Start Osweiler for a season and it’s not unreasonable to expect the same production.

    Take Brady off the 2013 Pats and right now they’re trying to figure out what number to give Clowney next year.

    —————————————————————
    Have you even watched the Broncos defense this year?
    I ask, because if you had you would know that they are not the same defense that they were in 2011.

    Start Osweiler this year with this defense and the Broncos are trying to figure out what number to give Bridgewater.

  69. eessppnn says: Dec 23, 2013 11:22 AM

    TB12/ only QB to evahhh be 100 games over 500!
    10 division titles, 7 AFC title games, 5 AFC Championship, 3 Superbowls.
    With less.
    Can’t be the best evahhh when u aren’t even the best in your era.
    And once he loses early AGAIN! It will be is he the biggest chocked evahhh

  70. infectorman says: Dec 23, 2013 11:24 AM

    Peyton has 3 Receivers, a TE and an RB that are all potential pro bowlers. Brady has never had that…
    And never will it seems, much to our chagrin in NE.

    Great job by Denver brass building the Robo offense, but defense wins Championships.

    Of woe, the fax machine

  71. peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:25 AM

    noah81398 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:05 AM

    I’m not doubting you know Pats fans that thought we were getting an upgrade. Not to be rude, but they were probably in denial. I live about an hour outside of Foxboro, and all im trying to say is the opinion here was in strong favor of a downgrade.

    Other than that, can’t really argue with you. Except for your last sentence. Totally in agreement with brazz01. You start Osweiler, and you can expect similar success. Yes, Manning makes the receivers better, but they are not exactly stiffs. They are physical and athletic, and just need someone who can put the ball where it needs to be. Peyton does that, but x10.

    ——————————————————————-
    I live in western Massachusetts. Maybe the doubt about the Amendola deal didn’t make it past Worcester.

    I hope you understand that I have a tremendous amount of respect for Tom Brady (and the Patriots as a team). However, I don’t root for him, primarily because of the natural rivalry that stems from being a Manning fan.

  72. villain612 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:36 AM

    I think Manning and Brady are the two greatest QB’s of all time – they have the numbers and the consistent dominance during an era where the players have never been physically better and defenses have never been as complicated.

    If I was a GM starting a team today, who would I pick first? I’d go with Manning but that’s just me. For my money, he’s the greatest of all time. Brady is right there with him though.

    Although I think he’s the best ever already, in the collective minds of football fans I will concede that Manning needs to win one more Super Bowl to shut those people up.

  73. villain612 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:39 AM

    Peyton has 3 Receivers, a TE and an RB that are all potential pro bowlers. Brady has never had that…
    And never will it seems, much to our chagrin in NE.

    ————————————-

    Were you in a coma in 2007? Brady had Randy Moss, arguably the most gifted wide receiver of all time. How many TD’s did Brady get by just throwing the ball up in double coverage for Moss to jump and get. He also had Wes Welker that year.

    I’m not trying to downplay Brady’s talent because I think he’s right there with Manning in QB greatness, but don’t try to act like Brady never had a ton of talent around him.

  74. noah81398 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:39 AM

    I live in western Massachusetts. Maybe the doubt about the Amendola deal didn’t make it past Worcester.

    I hope you understand that I have a tremendous amount of respect for Tom Brady (and the Patriots as a team). However, I don’t root for him, primarily because of the natural rivalry that stems from being a Manning fan.

    ………………………………………………….

    Haha did I forget to mention I live 5 mins outside of Worcestor? yeah I don’t think it got passed us.

    And hey, totally understand you have respect for what Brady has accomplished, as I have respect for Manning. I just cant stand how people are already writing the MVP award off to Peyton, and not even considering Brady, or even the aforementioned LeSean McCoy or Charles.

  75. nathanieltrelease says: Dec 23, 2013 11:41 AM

    The thing about history is you can’t fully know or appreciate the significance of anything – in this case, Peyton’s play and stats over a long career – until many years until after it’s over. Only then can you see that something was meaningful and held up after scrutiny – or not.

    So, while this is all great grist for the sports radio and blog mill, a giant “TBD” should come after every speculation.

    For now, it’s challenge enough to make sure the coaching staff of the Broncos kick it into hire gear and not, as is its wont, take wins for granted. Look what a sense of inevitability did in a bitter cold divisional game earlier this year. I was there. Not. Fun.

  76. peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:45 AM

    tdonn says: Dec 23, 2013 10:51 AM

    peymax1693 says:

    Brady’s 2007 season was the result of a “perfect storm” of offensive talent on that team. Considering Brady and the Pats never came close to that kind of offensive production before and haven’t since…

    ???????????????

    You need to look up the Pats 2011 season

    ——————————————————————-
    Although Brady threw for more yards in 2011 than he did in 2007, he also threw 11 less touchdowns. That’s not an insignificant difference. I will give you that the overall production between the 2011 team and the 2007 was not as great as I recalled. The 2011 team was ranked 3rd in offense at 32.1 ppg while the 2007 was ranked 1st with a record average of 36.8 ppg.

  77. brazzz01 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:45 AM

    I ask, because if you had you would know that they are not the same defense that they were in 2011.

    Start Osweiler this year with this defense and the Broncos are trying to figure out what number to give Bridgewater.
    ——–
    I don’t think the Broncos D is as bad as they’re made out to be. Sure they were better in 2011 but the two key metrics I like to look at when evaluating a defense are third down stops and making big plays like sacks and turnovers. The Broncos are league average in getting sacks and top 10 in getting turnovers. They are league average in third down conversions allowed. So are they a great D – no, but they’re not horrible.

    Not having Von Miller will hurt, if I’m the Broncos I’m hoping that guy comes back soon.

    But the offense is at least the same as the one with Tebow. Maybe even better if you count Welker.

  78. infectorman says: Dec 23, 2013 11:52 AM

    @villian612.

    Apparently, you’re still hungover from yesterdays record breaking day for Peyton.

    How does one Randy Moss and Welker compare to;
    D Thomas,
    J Thomas,
    E Decker,
    W Wekler and
    K Moreno?

    Thought so. It’s not close and you know it.

  79. peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:56 AM

    noah81398 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:39 AM:

    Haha did I forget to mention I live 5 mins outside of Worcestor? yeah I don’t think it got passed us.

    And hey, totally understand you have respect for what Brady has accomplished, as I have respect for Manning. I just cant stand how people are already writing the MVP award off to Peyton, and not even considering Brady, or even the aforementioned LeSean McCoy or Charles.

    ——————————————————————-
    It’s funny that you and I are perceiving this topic so differently. I get the impression that people aren’t writing off the MVP award to Manning and instead within the past few weeks there has been a groundswell that someone other than Manning should win it. A few weeks ago it was Brady; last week it was Jamaal Charles; this week it’s Nick Foles and Shady McCoy.

    Oh, and by people I mean our fellow posters here on PFT.

  80. peymax1693 says: Dec 23, 2013 12:23 PM

    brazzz01 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:45 AM

    I ask, because if you had you would know that they are not the same defense that they were in 2011.

    Start Osweiler this year with this defense and the Broncos are trying to figure out what number to give Bridgewater.
    ——–
    I don’t think the Broncos D is as bad as they’re made out to be. Sure they were better in 2011 but the two key metrics I like to look at when evaluating a defense are third down stops and making big plays like sacks and turnovers. The Broncos are league average in getting sacks and top 10 in getting turnovers. They are league average in third down conversions allowed. So are they a great D – no, but they’re not horrible.

    Not having Von Miller will hurt, if I’m the Broncos I’m hoping that guy comes back soon.

    But the offense is at least the same as the one with Tebow. Maybe even better if you count Welker.

    ——————————————————————-
    By “the offense is at least the same as the one with Tebow” I assume you mean by personnel and not production. The 2011 team ranked 25th in offense with a ppg average of 19.3. The 2013 team ranks 1st in offense with a ppg average of 38.2, which would be an NFL record.

    I would say that Manning’s offense producing 2x the amount of points as Tebow’s offense with basically the same personnel undermines your argument that the Broncos wouldn’t miss Manning.

  81. buckshowalter says: Dec 23, 2013 12:47 PM

    Peyton is the best regular season QB of this era. Brady is by far and away the best QB of this era. Brady plays his best when it matters most. Peyton tends to struggle in big moments, especially the post-season. Brady’s 17-7 post-season record(five super bowl appearances, three rings) versus Manning’s 9-11 (TWO appearances, one ring) says it all.

    I know what’s coming next from all of you jealous pats haters out there..spygate, spygate, spygate. I’m so sick of hearing about spygate, when the pats were hosed for that after week one in ’07 they went on to win their next 17 games. Let me repeat, THEY WENT ON TO WIN THEIR NEXT 17 GAMES!!! Justice prevailed and they lost in the Super Bowl but you cannot tell me that they are not great. Nor can you tell me that they are the only team that has videotaped opponents signals. You are flat out naive if you believe that and in my opinion stupid. No one ever talks about the Jets and them getting caught for the same exact thing a couple years ago.

    So bottom line, Brady is the best QB of this era and Manning is the man in the regular season. Brady has done so much more with so much less than Manning (this year is another year of proof). Nonetheless, congrats to Manning for owning another regular season record!

  82. brazzz01 says: Dec 23, 2013 12:51 PM

    y “the offense is at least the same as the one with Tebow” I assume you mean by personnel and not production. The 2011 team ranked 25th in offense with a ppg average of 19.3. The 2013 team ranks 1st in offense with a ppg average of 38.2, which would be an NFL record.

    I would say that Manning’s offense producing 2x the amount of points as Tebow’s offense with basically the same personnel undermines your argument that the Broncos wouldn’t miss Manning.

    —–
    Yes personnel. They got 8 wins with Tebow, why couldn’t Osweiler do at least as well with the same personnel? You’ll notice I’m not trying to equate him to Manning or say the Broncos wouldn’t miss Manning, clearly not true. But they wouldn’t fall off the precipice either.

  83. larj12 says: Dec 23, 2013 12:55 PM

    As far as value too his team, it should be Brady for MVP….. There hasn’t been an offense that reliant on undersized white guys since Ole Miss in the 1960s

  84. dualprime says: Dec 23, 2013 12:56 PM

    This is funny. All these comments and thousands of thumbs up/down over an article titled “NFL morning after: Peyton’s place in history.” It isn’t a slight of Brady, Montana or any other QB. It’s about a special accomplishment that sets Peyton apart from others…for now. Peyton does not go head-to-head with Brady. These two have lasted this long by finding the fetal position just before they get hit. They are the best of this era but soon to be forgotten in the next.

  85. fatsolio says: Dec 23, 2013 1:18 PM

    Trying to determine who is the greatest QB (or athlete in any respective sport) ever is so illogical that it makes me chuckle that people do it.

    Eras change so it is useless to try and compare a guy in this pass happy, horrible defense era to QBs from say 3 decades ago. Furthermore, last I checked there are a billion other variables that factor in. No two QBs have the same coaching staff or the same guys surrounding them. Then you factor in they usually play more different teams than common (I know it’s shocking but who you play against actually matters) and it just becomes even more useless to debate this.

    Oh and today’s free agency and the salary cap. Guys like Montana didn’t have to deal with that so he got the luxury of playing with the same good players. There is no way the 80s 9ers would have won 4 superbowls in today’s era as they would have lost many of their top players.

    I also like the comment about how it isn’t fair to criticize Manning’s season if he doesn’t win the superbowl yet that is how it is…umm, it is ONLY LIKE THAT because the media keeps kicking that dead horse. You all know it is dumb to define QBs by a team accomplishment yet you all keep doing it. JUST STOP DOING IT and it won’t be “how it is”…interestingly the media never says Brady’s seasons are for naught when he hasn’t won a superbowl. Nobody busted on him in 2007 or 2010 or 2011.

    For me, I don’t think Manning is the greatest of this generation. I think Aaron Rodgers is clearly the best QB of this era and Peyton, Brees and Brady are all close enough to each other you are splitting hairs trying to pick between those 3.

    The reason I think Rodgers is the best is he is the complete package while those other 3 guys do certain things better than each other yet have clear flaws. Brady’s strength is he doesn’t force it much, Peyton’s strength is he is great at adjustments and dealing with injuries while Brees’ strength is accuracy and the best deep ball of those 3. Rodgers has all those strengths, has incredible arm strength and is mobile to boot while he doesn’t have the same flaws they each do. He’s not perfect of course yet he seems to actually look to change his play when he makes mistakes. Those other guys keep doing their same mistakes over and over.

  86. dualprime says: Dec 23, 2013 1:24 PM

    I’m still waiting for someone to sneak Jeff George into this discussion.

  87. 2ruefan says: Dec 23, 2013 1:26 PM

    That’s the great thing about statistics and sports. You can argue from so many angles, and try to make it say what you want.

    I’d argue that Peyton Manning MADE most of the teams he was on better, and made many of his receivers seem better than they were. (Which is also true of any great QB. They put the ball exactly where a receiver needs to get it to be successful)

    Brady on the other hand has very often had tremendous talent to work with, and great coaching as well. He too makes those around him better, but has struggled mightily with the talent is not there.

    I think it is silly to judge the legacy of a QB on “how many superbowls” have you won. It’s idiotic.

    Is Brad Johnson as good as Marino? Is Trent Dilfer? This list goes on folks. If you want to judge a “great” QB on simply playoff percentage or SB wins, then you have a pretty poor idea of how to judge the talent/capability of that position.

  88. nyjetsfan08 says: Dec 23, 2013 1:41 PM

    You gotta look past all these inflated numbers and establish a baseline to compare across eras such as Interception % and YPA. Manning is not tops. I’d have to put Bart Starr, Johnny U, Montana, and Brady ahead of him, at least. He might be the greatest regular season quarterback ever. But he’s not a born winner. In the biggest moments, he has shown inconsistency. He’s not in the company of those men..yet.

  89. darrenjamesmorgan says: Dec 23, 2013 2:00 PM

    Peyton has been the head coach, offensive coordinator, locker room sheriff AND quarterback for his teams, and has had ONE losing season after coming in as the #1 overall pick to a moribund franchise, without playing for a coach regarded as one of the best ever or a team who cheated while winning Super Bowls or playing in a division with three joke teams for most of the last 13 years. He has won more MVPs – the ultimate measure of INDIVIDUAL excellence – than Brady, Brees, Rodgers, and Big Ben combined. Peyton is the greatest of his generation.

  90. darrenjamesmorgan says: Dec 23, 2013 2:01 PM

    P.S. Michael forgot Bill Russell on his list of 5-time MVPs.

  91. villain612 says: Dec 23, 2013 2:05 PM

    Eli Manning has the same amount of Super Bowl wins as John Elway. Clearly they are equal in stature and talent.

  92. marlinjackson82 says: Dec 23, 2013 2:51 PM

    So much Patriots fans in Manning topic, how suprising.
    Honestly, I’m tired of your constant whining. I see the same people in every Manning related article.
    And I’m tired of this Brady/Manning debate, supposed Brady’s clutchiness (when facts state otherwise) etc. Let’s wait for end of their careers and then debate

  93. zerohandicapper says: Dec 23, 2013 4:59 PM

    Stop with all the nonsense Brady-Manning stuff. Manning would not even have one if it were not for Dominic Rhodes. Brady can thank Vinatieri for his.
    Take those two and Montana, and just write down the one thing you remember about each person. That will give you your answer. Montana is and will always be the greatest at what he did. Its not even close. BTW..Tom Brady owns Peyton Manning.

  94. brazzz01 says: Dec 23, 2013 6:13 PM

    The difference between Patriot fans and haters:

    Pats fans are all intelligent fans of the sport. Therefore, we can and do appreciate a Peyton Manning and what he means to the NFL. We can and do appreciate the fact that without a Peyton Manning, the accomplishments of one Tom Brady lose much of their shine. We can and do give #18 respect and credit that he deserves as one of the all time greats, which he is. And in a way we’ll miss him when he’s gone.

    Pats haters on the other hand, being ignorant and uninformed fans of the NFL, are incapable of being objective about Tom Brady. They cannot bring themselves to give him the respect and credit that he too deserves as another one of the all time greats. When Brady wins, it’s never because of anything Brady did. It’s always the coach/kicker/defense/camera/refs. Of course when he loses it’s always his fault. Funny how that works. And as their petulant “system QB” proclamations prove beyond any doubt, they relish and treasure their own ignorance about the sport. I find that last part comically bizarre.

    Yup.

  95. irishnativeson says: Dec 23, 2013 6:29 PM

    Not sure if it’s the coaching or what really but those Lions sure got a lotta quit in’em.

  96. brazzz01 says: Dec 23, 2013 6:42 PM

    Regarding Dilfer/Johnson/etc and their Super Bowl rings:

    Ever notice how none of the likes of Dilfer/Johnson/Rypien/etc have ever won more than 1 Super Bowl ring?

    Why are they being mentioned in the same breath as a guy who has won 3?

  97. pensacolavolfan says: Dec 23, 2013 10:36 PM

    Brady misses a year the Pats still make the
    playoffs

  98. pensacolavolfan says: Dec 23, 2013 10:38 PM

    Manning misses a year Colts get to pick first in the draft

  99. usdcoyotesfan says: Dec 24, 2013 11:59 AM

    Another Packers-Bears classic with everything on the line this week!

  100. packfanaj12 says: Dec 24, 2013 5:17 PM

    Peyton has earned his reputation, which includes high scoring, high yards, heavy passing, and big letdowns for seasons. Have to take the good with the bad.

  101. sicko123 says: Dec 24, 2013 8:20 PM

    It is all about what his PEERS THINK ABOUT HIM and 99% of them would say he is THE GREATEST! I agree, when your the greatest QB of your ERA and was able to play and earn of the respect of the greatest Defensive Player in your ERA in Ray Lewis…THAT SAYS A LOT! Very happy for Peyton on his Comeback and wouldn’t mind seeing him win one more Ring since my Giants STINK this season.

  102. dhardy8207 says: Dec 28, 2013 12:02 PM

    I think not only will he go in the record books as one of the greatest but he is a class act when it comes for respect for his peers. If anyone watched the post game interview, he said when asked about the record 51 TDs this season, he said “I’m sure Tom will break that record in their remaining games.” These two obviously have great respect for one another and recognize that they stand in a limited class of greats.

    Its a shame that fans can’t feed off the mutual respect they have for each other and relish in the moment of watching greatness come to form on the field. I know Archie has to be really proud and he should be. Denver fans congrats on a fantastic season that hopefully will carry on into the playoffs. Pats fans have no reason to be offended, Brady will be amongst that class of greatness strictly off SB championships along.

    Montana, one of the greatest. Johnny U, no doubt a great, but to dismiss Peyton or Brady in that same category is just foolish…

  103. brazzz01 says: Dec 29, 2013 8:01 PM

    No matter who is GOAT (it’s Montana right now IMO) Manning had a season for the history books. No question about it.

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