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Top 10 NFL Quarterbacks of All Time

Friday, May 17, 2024


In the world of football, there’s no position as important as a quarterback. They have unparalleled authority on the field, bearing the weight of success and failure on their shoulders. 

Getting into the list of best quarterbacks in NFL history takes a lot. Over the years, we’ve had quarterbacks with different skills. There’s no fixed formula for making it into the history books as a great quarterback. 

Some of the greatest never won a Super Bowl, and not all of them had extraordinary throwing or running abilities. But every exceptional quarterback stands out in their own unique way.

In today’s NFL games, a talented quarterback serves as a major factor in a team’s victory. Throughout the history of the NFL, the most prominent quarterbacks have become the most famous players.

Here we have mentioned the top 10 NFL quarterbacks to date. Is your favourite player included in the list? Let’s see.

10) Aaron Rodgers


Source: CNN

Some folks might argue he should be ranked higher than 10th. Rodger’s touchdown to interception ratio is off the charts at 4.23:1, and his career passer rating is sky-high, over 100.

Plus, he’s got two MVP awards, despite going head-to-head with Manning, Brady, and Brees for those honors.

Although Rodgers only has one Super Bowl ring, in our book, it’s not just about winning championships—it’s about how you play the game.

Rodgers consistently outshines most of the other players on the field, and that’s what counts. Moreover, he is famous for pulling off wins from seemingly impossible situations.

9) John Elway


Source: Yahoo

If you want to talk about the top 10 NFL quarterbacks, then you must break down Elway’s legacy. Some say he’s only up there because of those two Super Bowl wins in ‘97 and ’98.

But if you rewind to the early days, Elway was like a one-man show, leading the Broncos to three Super Bowl appearances in his first seven years. Then there’s his pure talent. The guy had an incredible arm and was super agile. 

Now, let’s talk stats. Elway starred in five Super Bowls, a record at the time. But what’s even more impressive is how many times he rescued the Broncos from defeat. He had the second-most game-winning drives of any QB since 1950.

8) Roger Staubach


Source: Sports Illustrated

Moving on to Roger Staubach, there’s only one word for him: legendary. From serving in the Navy to leading the Cowboys to four Super Bowls in just eight seasons, Staubach was the epitome of a franchise quarterback.

Despite missing four seasons due to military service, he still managed to leave his mark. Staubach’s winning percentage ranks second all-time among quarterbacks with 100 starts, just behind Tom Brady.

And let’s not forget his Super Bowl performances. Even though he went 2-2, those losses were close, and he faced some of the toughest defenses in NFL history. So, yeah, Roger the Dodger did more than all right.

7) Dan Marino


Source: Yahoo Sports

Marino stands out as the exception to the “you gotta win a Super Bowl to be great” rule that’s been tossed around in sports discussions for decades. Well, it seems his talent was undeniable.

Marino’s college days showcased his strong arm, but when he hit the NFL, he was on another level. Quick, strong, and with a lightning-fast release. He led the Dolphins to victory in seven out of nine games and topped the AFC in passer rating.

In NFL season 1984, he became the first QB to pass for over 5,000 yards in a single season and achieved greatness- 5,084 passing yards, 48 touchdowns, and a passer rating of 108.9. That’s why he’s seated among the elite at number seven.

But Marino wasn’t a one-season wonder. He dominated the league in passing yards for years. 

6) Drew Brees


Source: ESPN

Now we must add Drew Brees to our list of the top 10 NFL quarterbacks of all time. He was the quarterback for the San Diego Chargers and later the New Orleans Saints. Brees stands out as a great player in NFL history.

He has built his career on putting up impressive numbers. Despite this, many in the football world feel he’s been undervalued. 

Even as the Saints evolve, with a more balanced offense under head coach Sean Payton, Brees continues to shine. His career is defined by his consistent and unstoppable production.

When it comes to handling pressure and making those crucial plays, Brees, Marino, and Brady are the masters. They have an innate ability to feel the pressure and adjust accordingly to ensure success.

He’s reached milestones that others can only dream of, like passing the 5,000-yard mark five times – a feat unmatched by any other player.

Completing over 70 percent of his passes four times further solidifies his place as one of the all-time greats.

5) Otto Graham


Source: Cleveland Browns

Ranked at number 5 in the list of top 10 NFL quarterbacks, is Otto Graham. He played for the Cleveland Browns from 1946 to 1955. Some football fans might overlook Graham due to his era, but his achievements speak volumes.

Graham holds a remarkable record of 10 championship game appearances in 10 seasons, with the first four coming in the All-America Football Conference (AAFC), where his Browns dominated, winning the title every year.

Despite the challenges of his time, Graham displayed exceptional skills, boasting a 2:1 touchdown-to-interception ratio and an impressive 99.1 passer rating.

One standout stat is his career yards-per-attempt mark of 9.0, highlighting his efficiency. Graham’s impact on the game was profound, setting standards that endure to this day.

4) Johnny Unitas


Source: Sports Collectors Digest

Johnny Unitas, known as the innovator of his time, revolutionized the quarterback position during his tenure with the Baltimore Colts from 1956 to 1972 and later with the San Diego Chargers in 1973.

He transformed the way teams approached late-game situations, introducing the now-commonplace two-minute drill.

Before Unitas, teams often struggled to manage the clock effectively, but his late-game heroics changed that narrative, emphasizing precision passing and clock management.

His partnership with Raymond Berry set the standard for quarterback-wide receiver duos, influencing generations of prolific combinations.

Unitas’s impact was immense, leading the Colts to consecutive championships early in his career and guiding them to further success, including a Super Bowl V title in 1970.

Similar to Peyton Manning, Unitas’s brilliance earned him three league MVP awards, making him one of football’s elite. His remarkable consistency earned him numerous accolades, including five first-team All-Pro selections and 10 Pro Bowl appearances.

Unitas led the league in passing touchdowns for four consecutive years and maintained a streak of 47 games with at least one touchdown pass, a record that stood for over five decades.

3) Peyton Manning


Source: CNN

Manning revolutionized the game with his innovative approach to play calling. Despite his occasional wobbly throws, Manning’s precision and timing were extraordinary. His five MVP awards are worth mentioning.

Critics may nitpick Manning’s postseason performances, but his clutch throws and two Super Bowl rings show his ability to rise to the occasion.

Manning holds plenty of NFL records, including most MVP awards and first-team All-Pro selections for quarterbacks.

He’s also had many 4,000-yard passing seasons and holds records for single-season passing yards and touchdowns. He’s third in career passing yards and touchdowns.

Leading both the Colts and Broncos to two Super Bowls each, he’s the only QB to do that with different teams.

2) Joe Montana


Source: Los Angeles Times

Montana’s precision and mobility set him apart. That’s why we have put him second into our list of top 10 NFL quarterbacks of all time. His throws were like poetry in motion, effortlessly finding their mark.

But what truly distinguished Montana was his ability to thrive under pressure. With four championships and three Super Bowl MVP awards to his name, he was the epitome of clutch. He holds a remarkable 16-7 record and a string of great comebacks.

His 1984 and 1989 seasons were spectacular. Even during his time with the Kansas City Chiefs, Montana continued to make history, leading the team to their first AFC Championship Game since the AFL-NFL merger.

A lesser-known fact is Montana’s remarkable playoff consistency from 1988 to 1990, where he boasted a 100-plus passer rating in eight consecutive games. 

1. Tom Brady


Source: CNN

Meet Tom Brady, the quarterback legend of the New England Patriots since 2000. Sure, he might not have the flashiest stats in the game, but when it comes to winning, he’s in a league of his own.

With 207 regular-season victories and 30 postseason wins, he’s miles ahead of his competition. Brady’s known for his precision passing, smart decision-making, and clutch plays under pressure. Brady’s success stems from his focus and team-first mentality.

He was willing to sacrifice money for a stronger team and supported his teammates through thick and thin. Despite all his achievements, he was as hungry for victory as ever, whether it was a crucial playoff game or a regular-season matchup.

And talk about consistency! Brady’s career has been matchless. From his first MVP season to his most recent, there’s been little decline, if any. That’s the mark of a true legend.



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