Given the opportunity to sleep on an assessment that caused some to wonder whether he was asleep at the switch on Thursday, former Giants receiver Amani Toomer on Friday stood by his assessment that Tony Romo is a better quarterback than Toomer’s former teammate, Eli Manning.
“I love Eli, and I respect the hell out of him as a person,” Toomer said Friday on ESPN New York’s Michael Kay Show, via WABC-TV. “But I have to do my job, and I have to look at him beyond what the perception is because the perception doesn’t always go hand in hand with the reality.”
Toomer said that he was ready to declare Eli as superior to the Cowboys’ signal-caller, until looking at the numbers.
“I was all set — Romo’s no good, he’s a fourth-quarter choker — and then I started doing my job,” Toomer said. “I started looking at the numbers. I started looking at the statistics. I started looking at the quarterback rating. And I was shocked. I was shocked at how good Tony Romo’s statistics really were. This guy is really impressive.
“Then when I was on [SiriusXM NFL Radio’s Movin’ the Chains] and we were going over the NFC East, Tim Ryan, my co-host, said [Manning] is the best quarterback in the NFC East and the Giants were going to win the division. And I was like, wait a minute. All this information I had just gathered about Tony Romo, I couldn’t let him get away with it.
“So I said, ‘You know what? Tony Romo, statistically, he’s the better quarterback.'”
It’s a fair point, but much of the debate depends (as Alex Smith knows) on the definition of the term “statistics.” While relevant for fantasy-football owners, yards and touchdowns and interceptions and completion percentages and passer ratings have no relevance when it comes to winning games.
Or, more accurately as it relates to the Romo-Eli comparison, making a big play when the game is on the line instead of throwing an interception. Or fumbling the placement of a game-winning, chip-shot field goal.
That’s why nearly 75 percent of you have disagreed with Toomer. (The polls are still open below; technically, they never close.) Manning has two Super Bowl wins. He has authored some of the greatest clutch postseason performances in league history. Romo may be the better overall passer, but Eli is the better overall player.