The ranking of who is the NFL’s best all-time quarterback, is always debatable, and often a matter of who is the latest to retire.
It is hard to argue against Peyton Manning who gave his farewell news conference this week.
First of all let’s not go overboard on statistics. Football is the one sport that is most skewed when it comes to stats which can be spun a thousand ways. There’s not a soul who can reel off the factors that go into determining the rating of a QB.
Interceptions can be the result of tipped balls and deflections which may not reflect on the passer.
And as we all know, passing yardage is usually bloated in favor a quarterback who is way behind and given yardage by the team ahead. Just look at the weekly passing yardage totals. The losers dominate.
Yet they are not TOTALLY insignificant and Manning is at or near the top in many. Of course, the one I like best is longevity. Eighteen years in the game. A long-time winner. For two franchises. Two Super Bowl titles, and I know he was at the end of the line and was a shell of himself in February.
But Peyton Manning had an electricity about him. The image at the line of scrimmage, shouting “Omaha” and other calls, pointing all over the place, jumping around, his head moving wildly. All before a clutch throw that resulted in a big gain or a touchdown.
Until the neck injury and other ailments at the end, he was healthy enough to stay on his feet and torture opposing defenses.
Yes, longevity and big-time success. Tough to beat.
The personable Peyton Manning went out on top this week and his good-bye, filled with a laundry list of poignant things he will miss about the game, was priceless. Just like the man.
It’s also funny to think about. But while their personalities and temperament are not similar, we probably will be saying the same thing about Tom Brady when he hangs ’em up.
That’s the way it goes. The next greatest ever is waiting in the wings.