Sage Rosenfels is a former 12-yr NFL quarterback who writes, does radio, and podcasts concerning the NFL and school soccer.
With the NFL’s annual celebration of its Corridor of Fame inductees solely three weeks away, I assumed I might take a while to determine which present NFL quarterbacks can be sporting a gold jacket some day.
Having your bust positioned within the Corridor with the remainder of soccer’s biggest gamers and coaches is a dream for many NFL gamers. These males are already shoo-ins to the Corridor, whereas a trio of others are properly on their means.
Tom Brady, New England Patriots
With 5 Tremendous Bowl wins in his seven appearances, Brady solidified himself as one of many prime three quarterbacks of all time. For my part, he’s one of the best of all time. His degree of success is unmatched.
Although he’s virtually forty, Brady continues to be enjoying at a particularly excessive degree. For years, non-Patriots followers have been hoping for his effectiveness to drop, solely to have their hopes dashed. The query of Brady getting into the Corridor is not if, however when.
It might not shock me if Brady performs for an additional 5 years, particularly given his dedication to the science of eating regimen and coaching. Mobility and arm power are often the primary issues that depart an getting older quarterback, forcing them to retire. Brady by no means had nice mobility and, due to the basics of his throwing movement, his arm power has but to be a problem. Brady might be within the Corridor, however it might not occur for an additional decade.
Aaron Rodgers, Inexperienced Bay Packers
Regardless of driving the bench for the primary three years of his profession, Rodgers is a shoo-in Corridor of Famer.
Since 2008, his first yr as a starter, Rodgers has been probably the greatest quarterbacks within the league. He has gained two NFL MVPs, was chosen first staff All-Professional twice, is a six-time Professional Bowler, and gained a Tremendous Bowl. He’s nonetheless solely 33, so soccer followers get to take pleasure in Rodgers’ magic for an additional 5-10 years. He has one of many NFL’s strongest and most correct arms.
Over the previous few seasons, he has additionally turn out to be one of many league’s greatest playmakers. A robust, correct arm, mixed with the power to make off-schedule performs, is a particularly uncommon mixture – so uncommon that he will probably be a shoo-in precisely 5 years after he retires. Packers followers have been unbelievably fortunate to have Brett Favre and Rodgers again-to-again. I’m wondering if their busts might be close to one another in Canton.
Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints
The second-oldest quarterback within the NFL after Brady, Brees has the third most all-time passing yards – lower than 6,000 yards behind Favre and Peyton Manning. If he can play two extra seasons, he’ll cross each of them.
Brees can also be third all time in TD passes. He has gained a Tremendous Bowl and owns each passing document in New Orleans Saints historical past. Regardless of being a second-spherical draft decide and standing barely six ft tall, Brees has defied the chances.
In a league which values quarterbacks with robust arms or uncooked athleticism, Brees discovered his area of interest with accuracy. He owns the NFL document for highest profession completion proportion at sixty six.6. As a result of the Saints have had three consecutive 7-9 seasons, Brees’ numbers have not been observed as of late. In 2016, he should have had the quietest 5,200-yard season in NFL historical past.
How lengthy Brees performs for is anybody’s guess, however his stats have not dropped off as a lot as you’d anticipate from an older quarterback with out an enormous arm. His final six seasons have produced probably the most yards of any six-yr run within the league’s historical past.
Brees additionally takes unimaginable care of his physique. It will not shock me if he, like Brady, performs for an additional 5 seasons. Nevertheless longer he performs, his place in Canton has already been secured.
Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers
Massive Ben can also be a no-doubt Corridor of Famer.
He’s into his 14th NFL season, which could possibly be his final. After profitable Rookie of the Yr honors in 2004, Roethlisberger gained his first of two Tremendous Bowls in his sophomore season. He holds the excellence of being the youngest quarterback to ever win a Tremendous Bowl.
Early in his profession, his biggest asset was his capability to grind out ugly wins on a workforce loaded with defensive expertise and a robust operating recreation. As his profession has progressed, increasingly of Pittsburgh‘s offensive duty has rested on Roethlisberger’s proper shoulder. Of his 5 Professional Bowls, three have come within the final three seasons.
Roethlisberger will not finish his profession with quite a few NFL passing data, which is simply superb with him. His biggest power has all the time been his capability to seek out methods to win soccer video games. He has gained over 70 % of the video games in his profession, and has made Heinz Area one of many hardest locations to play within the league.
Massive Ben will not be remembered for statistics reminiscent of passing yards or profession touchdowns. These have all the time been inconsequential to him. Profitable has been and all the time might be all that issues. He has finished loads of that via his first thirteen seasons, which is why he will probably be within the Corridor, as nicely.
Eli Manning, New York Giants
Just like Roethlisberger, Eli is greatest recognized for being a clutch quarterback within the largest video games of his profession.
He has gained two Tremendous Bowls, the primary towards the beforehand undefeated Patriots. He has been chosen to 4 Professional Bowls and is eight-four within the playoffs. Although he has solely made it to the playoffs in six of his thirteen seasons, his two Tremendous Bowl wins give him the additional push he must make it into the Corridor.
Eli owns almost each Giants passing document, whereas holding down the beginning quarterback job for the G-Males since halfway by means of his rookie season. His capacity to remain wholesome places him into an elite class with Favre and his older brother, Peyton. He’s at present third all time with 199 begins in a row.
Eli additionally has thrown for the eighth most profession passing yards in NFL historical past. Although Eli’s profession hasn’t been as persistently nice as Brady or Rodgers, he may have completed sufficient by its finish to land him in Canton.
Philip Rivers, Los Angeles Chargers
Whereas some might disagree, Rivers will probably be within the Corridor of Fame. He, like Marino, will enter the Corridor and not using a Tremendous Bowl ring.
Drafted in 2004 after Eli and earlier than Roethlisberger, Rivers has had disadvantages that the opposite two quarterbacks by no means confronted. Whereas the Giants and Steelers are two of the classiest and smartest NFL franchises, the Chargers are recognized for making dangerous selections and being low cost with gamers.
Regardless of this, Rivers is presently ranked twelfth all time in passing yards, however might finish his 2017 season as excessive as seventh on the record. He’s proper behind Eli on the record of consecutive begins with 148. If he weren’t sitting behind Brees for his first two seasons, he would in all probability be forward of Eli, as nicely.
The Chargers have all the time been an inconsistent staff, however Rivers has been the glue that has stored the Bolts aggressive for the final eleven seasons. His six Professional Bowls and passing stats will get him to the Corridor, regardless of the Chargers’ incapability to construct a constant playoff workforce.
And listed here are three different lively QBs who might play their approach into Corridor of Fame rivalry in the event that they proceed down their present paths:
Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons
In solely 9 seasons, Ryan is already ranked twenty first all time in passing yards. His profession up to now is not sufficient to get him into the Corridor of Fame. However, after profitable the NFL MVP award in 2016, Ryan is nicely on his means.
In simply two years, he might be on the cusp of the NFL’s prime-10 passing yard leaders. He has been to 4 Professional Bowls and got here inside minutes of profitable a Tremendous Bowl final yr. If his profession ended at this time, Ryan would not get in. Fortunately for Falcons followers, he ought to have one other eight-10 extra seasons as their starter.
When his profession concludes, Ryan might go down as one of many NFL’s biggest passers. He might be a prime-5 chief in passing yards, touchdowns, and consecutive begins. He presently is seventh all time with one hundred fifteen straight video games beneath middle. Ryan has an extended profession forward of him, which can find yourself being on a brief street to Canton.
Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
Although he’s solely 5 years into his profession, Wilson is on a path to the Corridor of Fame. He has made three Professional Bowls in these 5 seasons, in addition to profitable a Tremendous Bowl (ought to’ve been two).
Regardless of being one of many shortest quarterbacks in current NFL historical past, Wilson ought to have a prolonged profession. He’s robust and compact which ought to maintain him away from season-ending accidents. Like Rodgers, Wilson is among the greatest playmaking quarterbacks within the league. Although he does not mild up the report books with gaudy passing stats, he’s a gifted passer.
Wilson has a profession sixty five % completion price and is probably the most correct deep-throwing QB within the NFL. Wilson has one other decade left in his NFL profession if he stays wholesome. At this fee, he may have his bronze bust ready for him in Ohio.
Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers
In six seasons, Newton has made the Professional Bowl 3 times. He additionally was the MVP in 2015. His passing numbers have by no means in contrast properly to the best throwers in league historical past.
However Newton has a component to his recreation that Marino, Brees, and Peyton have by no means had. Cam has additionally ran for over three,500 yards in his six seasons. Most significantly and why he’s so helpful, is that Newton has forty eight dashing touchdowns. His mixture of passing and operating makes him a scary participant to defend.
My largest concern with Newton is accidents. Due to his giant body and enjoying fashion, he’s prone to brutal hits. As his profession progresses, he and the Panthers could have him operating much less and passing extra. Whereas he has an enormous arm and throws a gorgeous ball, he has but to grasp the intricacies of the NFL passing recreation.
This should change if he too needs an extended profession. What Newton has completed as an NFL quarterback is particular. However due to the best way he performs, his type will undoubtedly want to vary if he needs to succeed in the Corridor of Fame. He’s the one quarterback on this record that I’ve to say that about.
(Pictures courtesy: Motion Pictures)