I am a child of the 1980s who became an adult in the 1990s and turned 30 this year. So, I'm at that "comparison age". That's when you compare things of today to things you remember as a younger lad.
With the quality batch of young QBs that have entered the NFL in the past 7 years or so, it makes me think back to the late 1980s and early-to-mid 1990s. So I gotta compare.
Sure, you can look back on this and make judgements....which is fine. A buddy of mine and I went back and forth on a few of these, so I understand dissent. But...here ya go:
PEYTON MANNING. I have to say Dan Marino. Marino was the best passer of his time....just as Peyton is now. Of course, neither tasted total team success....but both are masters of their craft.
TOM BRADY. How about Joe Montana? Brady's idol, Montana was the coolest cucumber in the league. The guy was nails when the chips were down. All Tom Brady has done was drive his team down the field in the final moments to win a Super Bowl. Twice.
ELI MANNING. This is a bit of a stretch....right now...but I am going with John Elway. Both were #1 picks who refused to report to their drafted teams. Both have strong arms and that ability to lead. Elway was a master at controlling the game....and Eli is showing the same sort of traits.
MICHAEL VICK. I say Randall Cunningham. I really want to say Steve Young...but Young's passing stats were just too great. But Cunningham, like Vick, could scare teams with his pure athleticsm. Just the threat forces defenses to adjust. Both seemed to be at a different speed than everyone else on the field.
DONOVAN MCNABB. Now, I say Steve Young. Both have that sort of chip on their shoulders. Young got slammed that he wasn't Montana. McNabb gets slammed because he's....well, for some reason he doesn't get as much respect as I feel he deserves. Young was a better passer...but both have that winning intangible that lives inside them.
CARSON PALMER. Troy Aikman, maybe? Both went to SoCal schools...were the #1 pick for a limping franchise...and both have helped turn them around rather quickly. Both had the luxury of a premiere WR to toss it to and a pretty good RB [um, Aikman's was a tad bit better, eh?]. Cincy fans hope that the Super Bowls come around soon, too.
JAKE DELHOMME. I have to say Brett Favre. He's not in Favre's class....but he has the same type of game. Both are willing to see if they can make something happen out of nothing....sometimes hurting his team. Both have that Cajun confidence that they can throw that football anywhere.
TRENT GREEN. I am going to go with Phil Simms. Well, this year is the exception...but Green is normally a reliable passer, just like Simms. And when discussing the best QBs of their times...both get forgotten.
JAKE PLUMMER. Remember this name? Jim Everett. Or as Jim Rome called him....Chris Everett. Many forget that Everett was the man back in the day-day for the LA Rams. For some reason [I guess that gun-slinging attitude] Jake reminds me of ol' Everett.
DAUNTE CULPEPPER. Warren Moon. Both dome dwellers could spread that ball around all over the place.
STEVE MCNAIR. Okay...a slightly older QB. But he reminds me of Jim McMahon. Both played thru so many aches and pains that it may have hurt their longevity. Both would stand in the pocket and take hits....or scramble out and take even bigger hits.
KERRY COLLINS. How's about Mark Rypien. Not the greatest mechanics...but boy can they get that ball deep!
Byron Leftwich...Bernie Kosar??
Tim Hasselbeck....Boomer Esiason???
Marc Bulger....Jim Kelly???