Tom’s the Man


Talk of Fame Network

Our readers have spoken — it’s Tom Brady.

We posed this question in our first Talk of Fame Network poll — If you could choose one quarterback to win one game, who would it be?

Brady was the only non-Hall of Fame option among the four quarterbacks listed. Our readers gave him 27 percent of the vote, followed by Johnny Unitas and Joe Montana at 25 percent apiece and Otto Graham at 23 percent.

Your hosts of Talk of Fame Sports Network disagreed, of course. Rick Gosselin and Clark Judge voted Otto Graham and Ron Borges went with Unitas.

“The reason is simple — winning,” Judge said. “Otto Graham won wherever he was: NFL, AAFC, college, pros, it didn’t matter. He went to 10 straight league championship games, and, no, I don’t care that some of them were in the AAFC. I just care that he was always there. Always. Better yet, he won seven of those times.

“But that’s not all. Any idea who has the best regular-season winning percentage among quarterbacks? It’s not Tom Brady. He’s second. It’s not Peyton Manning, either. It’s Otto Graham at a staggering .814. So, let me see if I have this right: It didn’t matter where or when he played — he always won. Works for me.”

Borges was partial to Unitas, a three-time champion and two-time MVP.

“You would seldom lose with any of these quarterbacks,” Borges said, “but Unitas invented the two-minute drill and wrote the blueprint on how to run it.

“Unlike Montana and Brady, he called his own plays, fully running the show once the game began. He was not an extension of his coach, as even Graham was. He was the coach once the whistle blew. That’s what separates him from the rest.”

Since stepping in as quarterback of the Patriots in 2001, Brady has steered New England to 11 AFC East titles and won 77.4 percent of his starts. He has taken the Patriots to eight AFC title games and five Super Bowls, winning three of them.

Brady@OR100211_DS0560

*Photo courtesy of the New England Patriots/ David Silverman

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9 Comments

  1. nliu
    July 16, 2014
    Reply

    Yay Tom! Although I voted for Unitas.

  2. nliu
    July 16, 2014
    Reply

    Enjoyed reading the write up, it was
    very insightful.

  3. Rick Gosselin
    July 16, 2014
    Reply

    The percentages tell how closely the balloting went. Brady wins with slightly better than a quarter of the vote. We may have to have another ballot with Brady, Bart Starr, Terry Bradshaw and John Elway.

  4. Jeff
    July 16, 2014
    Reply

    Tom “TB12” Brady is playing in an era of completely different than the others and is the best ever!

  5. SAKNEWS
    July 19, 2014
    Reply

    Wasn’t Otto Graham on an early NBA championship team that he joined one winter, maybe the Rochester Royals or Fort Wayne Pistons?

    • Rick Gosselin
      July 19, 2014
      Reply

      Good memory — Graham played for the 1946 Rochester Royals, who won the National Basketball League championship. The NBL was the forerunner of the NBA.

    • July 20, 2014
      Reply

      I liked your comment so much I posted an answer to it for the rest of our viewers/readers at Talk of Fame Network. Great memory. Informed discussion is what we’re all about at Talk of Fame Network.

  6. Rich Quodomine
    July 19, 2014
    Reply

    I think the culprit here is recency. Brady simply is more relevant to any fan who was born after 1964. This is not to disrespect any other player on the list. While we’re at it, let’s throw in Sid Luckman. Invented the modern T-formation, All-NFL 5 seasons and set a ton of records. 5 straight NFL title games and the 73-0 demolition of the DC team against him. Great career, in the hall of fame, but… no longer relevant to most.

    • Rick Gosselin
      July 19, 2014
      Reply

      Couldn’t agree with you more. We are in the “latest is the greatest” generation. Players can only be judged based on the era they played in. Rule changes have allowed the modern era quarterbacks to play a different game. Defenses can’t hit the quarterback nor can they can’t hit the receivers, either at the line or across the middle. Offensive linemen can extend their arms and grasp with their hands to slow pass rushers. I’m guessing if Johnny Unitas or Otto Graham would have played in this era, they would have adapted to the game quite well. A great player is a great player across the generations. Graham, Unitas, Montana and Brady all excelled at the game they were allowed to play. There was no wrong answer to this poll.

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