Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

06 Aug 2013

The Quarterback Nonsense Index

Hey gang! I usually don't gum up the XPs with every little thing I write for Sports on Earth, but I thought you would get a kick out of my effort to rank the quarterbacks in terms of the amount of sportstalk blather they generate.

Posted by: Mike Tanier on 06 Aug 2013

57 comments, Last at 12 Aug 2013, 12:34am by LionInAZ


by andrew s (not verified) :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 8:21am

Good job, Mike. Entertaining read!

by Insancipitory :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 8:37am

East Coast Bias! Because it's 6am and Russell Wilson is just about to finish watching film.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 10:03am

Yeah, as you noted in your previous Romo piece, it really is kind of amusing how people overlook the fact that Romo has been compensating, and doing it pretty well, for crappy offensive line play for nearly his entire career. There have been years when his ability to be productive under extreme pressure has been all that has prevented Jerry Jones from a having a top five draft pick to waste. Put it this way; Cutler has not compensated for that disadvantage nearly as well as Romo, and anybody who thinks that Cutler's career is on par with Romo's, to date, is crazy.

Yeah, Cutler has been subjected to non-trivial negative nonsense, mostly about not playing with an injury, and stupid stuff about facial expressions, but Romo is actually pretty good, and Cutler has been largely pretty bad for a while now. If you are pretty bad with a lively arm that squeezes the ball into tight windows on occasion, however, people stay enamored with you longer than the overall performance warrants. I'd say this is the last stand for Cutler, however. He has a head coach with a strong track record, as an assistant, of boosting qb productivity. If Cutler's productivity doesn't make a big step now, even with all the Bears' personnel issues (although Bushrod should help), the negative nonsense about Cutler will finally completely eclipse the irrational attachment to him.

by Steve in WI :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 11:07am

While I agree that it's crucial for Cutler to take a big step forward this year, I'd still argue that prior to last season the Bears offense was so bad as a whole that it was almost impossible for him to overcome it. Apart from the obvious and much-discussed offensive line issues, from 2009-2011 the Bears also lacked even one good WR. Cutler had to deal with a new OC each season and none of them were particularly good (of course, Martz was by far the worst). 2012 was the first season that I feel like Cutler's play could reasonably be evaluated, and it wasn't good - yes, the O-line was still terrible and Tice wasn't a great OC, but at least he had a target to throw to in Brandon Marshall. I expected Cutler to be better last year than he was, and if he has the same season this year I think the Bears should look elsewhere for a long-term solution at QB.

All that said, what annoys me is that Cutler seems to be criticized more for his demeanor and for a while his supposed lack of toughness (watching him get hit over and over again the last two years seems to have quieted that argument down a bit, though) than for his actual bad play. It'll be interesting to see what he does this season.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 11:39am

I agree that the criticism of Cutler has been frequently stupid, and I too was willing to cut him a lot of slack for his lack of productivity since arriving in Chicago. I'd also say the largest reason to do so is getting stuck with Martz. That said, he has to bear a substantial part of the the responsibiity for what has happened on the field. Last year, in particular, he was just terrible, and there have been other years where, even considering all mitigating factors, he just hasn't been good, especially once one also factors that he's always played with a defense that doesn't put excessive pressure on him.

To draw the contrast with Romo again, yeah Romo has had better receivers, although they can be a bit overrated in some years. However, Romo's protection has been mostly really awful as well, and he has had some years where the Cowboys defense has put him in a position where he has to be very productive, to keep the Cowboys competitive. For the most part he has done so, very well, despite the team never being well coached since Parcells left, which is not necessarily a criticism of the current coach as much as recognition that Cowboys ownership makes it very unlikely that they will be coached well.

The criticism of Cutler is really dumb sometimes. The criticism of Romo is frequently certifiably insane.

by justanothersteve :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 1:24pm

I think this dialogue shows why Romo and Cutler are the top two in QNI.

by sundown (not verified) :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 12:26pm

To me, the astounding part about Romo is that he was undrafted. If he played in a less intense a market, he'd be universally hailed as one of the greatest values in QB history. Instead, Cowboy fans routinely gripe about how much he sucks as if the team had auctioned their future to acquire him.

The epitome of talking about nothing with Romo for me was when they lost to the Giants late in the season 2 years back to be eliminated from the playoffs. The Giants dominated, Victor Cruz torched the Cowboy D for 178 yards receiving, Romo was pounded by the pass rush all day, yet multiple articles the next day questioned if he'd lost the game for them with an illegal forward pass in the first half when he was scrambling for his life. Just crazy.

by Independent George :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 10:16am

This is a stats site! I demand analysis - a pretty chart detailing QB nonsense index over time! The area under the curve gives you the cumulative nonsense over a career. Aggregating the data gives us a uniform metric to compare relative nonsense levels - let's call it a milliRomo.

Also, should FO start listing QNI on the Quarterbacks page?

by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 2:23pm

"Aggregating the data gives us a uniform metric to compare relative nonsense levels - let's call it a milliRomo."

I like that. And you can use Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith to calibrate your instruments.

by Independent George :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 9:56am

If we use 2012 as a baseline, then 30 points = 1 Romo. A milliRomo (mR) is then .003 points, or 1 point = 33.3 mR.

By scoring on a thousand-point scale, we then have greater precision in our system. We can then add stronger weight to particularly egregious offenses, or repeat offenses.

And you can use Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith to calibrate your instruments.

This is a great point. While we have a consistent rubric, we are still relying on subjective measures to determine if a player qualifies for points. Much the way DVOA uses play-by-play data to score individual plays, it should be plausible to create an algorithm to isolate QB Nonsense from Bayless/Smith transcripts to measure the both the rate of nonsense (as a percentage of verbiage per unit airtime) and a cumulative total.

by RickD :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 5:41pm

"And you can use Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith to calibrate your instruments."

That'd be like using a nuclear explosion to calibrate your Geiger counter.

by RickD :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 5:41pm

"And you can use Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith to calibrate your instruments."

That'd be like using a nuclear explosion to calibrate your Geiger counter.

by Thok :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 11:33am

Is the San Francisco Bay Area really a big market for QB nonsense issue? I sort of feel like it's a bit too laid back for that. And I say that having seen Montana-Young, the Owens-Garcia feud, Alex Smith as a flop, JaMarcus as a flop, the Palmer trade, and Kaepernick-Smith; all of those would have been more nonsensical in other large cities.

by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 2:19pm

In terms of sheer numbers, it's the 6th largest market in the country (Although Oakland does get lumped into it).

As far as football fandom/irrationality, it's not at the level of New York (but what metro area is?), but if the dozen or so Niner fans I know in real life are any indication, they're not that laid back when it comes to the 49ers. (Getting used to winning or coming close to winning championships on a semi-regular basis in the 80's and 90's, and then enduring the Dennis Erickson-Mike Nolan era will do that to you, I guess).

49ers fan posters, please correct me if I'm off base.

by bravehoptoad :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 1:10pm

It's not a city where it's so cool to be fanatic.

I remember a few years back when the Barry-Bonds led SF Giants were in the World Series...first time in many decades. It's like the team had to educate the fans on how to be fans. The first home game, they asked everyone to show up in Giants orange. Wear orange? In San Francisco? No way. No one did. The second home game they asked everyone to wear black. That -- that was something San Franciscans could get into. That night the stadium looked like a black hole.

Of course, it's a big area -- 5th largest according to U.S. census (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Combined_Statistical_Areas) -- and there are plenty of more traditional spots all around the bay.

by justanothersteve :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 1:13pm

Somewhere there needs to be a special age category where only Weeden gets. He may not generate much nonsense, but almost all of it is related to his age.

I don't even want to know whose time as a Jet created the most QNI between Tebow and Favre. Had they been there at the same time the universe might have imploded.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 1:22pm

The QNI surrounding Stubbleface was completely off the charts, to a point where no other modern era qb can compare. The unique thing about Stubbleface is that the positive nonsense was every bit a stupid as the negative nonsense, which of course was largely prompted by many years of positive nonsense. For years, the public discourse was that The Nation's Favorite Jeans Model shat golden nuggets, and then it turned on a dime, to the point where people started to think that a 3 time MVP was little more than Jeff George with better public relations.

by Pied :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 11:32pm

I guess I'm OK with that statement considering Tebow falls outside the definition of "modern" QB

by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 2:19pm

Weeden's age was the dry timber, and the american flag incident was the match, and his below-average play was the gasoline.

by Jerry :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 6:59pm

Any Jets quarterback is chasing Joe Namath's QNI.

by IB (not verified) :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 1:15pm

Also known as total QBR

by bravehoptoad :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 1:11pm


by Will Allen :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 3:25pm

I guess I have too much time to kill today, because this bit of Tanierism has gotten me thinking. Yeah, the qb position has a high nonsense quotient. Beyond the obviously visibility of the position, however, I think there is a pretty good reason why it attracts so much nonsense. The position has with it a leadership responsibility that is nearly unique, with the only position in sports even approaching it is a dominant offensive NBA player who controls the ball on nearly every possession, but even that guy doesn't run things the way a qb is expected to.

Just because leadership is hard to quantify doesn't mean it doesn't exist, but because it is hard to quantify, people who are observing from afar are left with things like facial expressions and vacations to make dubious conclusions about a qb's leadership qualities. It's the same reason why fans so frequently stupidly conclude that coach who is not animated on the sideline must be missing an opportunity to be a better coach.

Leadership is an important quality in a qb, so how a qb interacts with other people is important, in a way that it is not with other positions. It just is almost impossible to make a judgement about that unless you are within the group itself.

by theslothook :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 4:06pm

I feel like leadership has a ton of confirmation bias attached to it. QB success - seems to imply leadership. Consistent success = more leadership. And rings = Bonafide leader. I mean, I would pose it this way - can we name a qb that is a great leader but is or was unsuccessful and vice versa, can we name a poor leader who was still a great qb? I think inherently leadership is tossed into the same boat as gut check, ice watered veins, and mythical "it" sauce.

by Independent George :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 4:15pm

Norm Van Brocklin comes to mind - obviously I never saw him play, but just about every coach/teammate interview I've ever seen or read is prefaced with, "Well, he was a real sonofabitch, but...".

by Will Allen :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 5:27pm

It was said that it was his worst fault as a coach as well; he never received the benefit of having a qb with Tarkenton's talent, because he was so busy alienating Tarkenton and everybody else. he fact that he was an A-hole wasn't as important when he was playing qb, because he was otherwise a great qb. As a coach, he was a disaster.

It's kind of interesting how few great qbs have even tried coaching. Bart Starr comes to mind, but not too many others in the past 50 years.

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 12:24pm

Being unlikeable doesn't make you a bad leader.

Michael Jordan's teammates hated him, for instance. They also feared him; it worked. Van Brocklin was the same way.

As for good leaders who didn't win -- McNair, Tarkenton, Marino.

by sundown (not verified) :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 1:19pm

One thing about Jordan, though, is even if he was a total jerk at times, guys still wanted to be around him. Guys wanted to golf with him, play cards with him, etc. I've always been kind of fascinated in that while his game and his ability to be a jerk to teammates is quite similar to Kobe, Kobe somehow totally lacks that little something extra that draws guys to him. Maybe part of it is that he doesn't really want to hang with his teammates while Jordan always made the effort. Or maybe there's just something lacking and guys just don't want to be around him. But either way, I've just never seen a team stick together because of Kobe the way they did for Jordan.

by Will Allen :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 3:54pm

I said below that the question is whether someone is an unfiltered, unmitigated A-hole, with zero talent for engaging other human beings. Jordan did know how to engage other human beings when it came to challenging them to be better. Jeff George did not.

by Independent George :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 4:05pm

Also, when I read interviews from teammates about Jordan, use A-hole tendencies are usually recounted admiringly; that's not the case when it comes to Van Brocklin. Players hated him, but accepted him because he could throw them the damned ball; they never speak about him elevating their game, teaching them, or inspiring them the way they do about Johnny Unitas. He just threw well, and that was the extent of their relationship.

by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 5:08pm

1)"can we name a qb that is a great leader but is or was unsuccessful?"

Archie Manning? I never saw him play, but a lot of sports journalists that did keep repeating that mantra that if he had been drafted by a team with a good roster, he would have been an all-time great.

2)"can we name a poor leader who was still a great qb?"

Bobby Layne? His old teammates seem to tell the same story about his comeback wins: "He would show up to the game drunk or hungover, and play really badly for three quarters, then he'd sober up in the 4th quarter and the defense couldn't stop him." (obviously a lot of that is hyperbole)

I don't think we'll ever come up with a modern answer to your second question. The off-the-field boozing would get way too much attention (Oh hi Johnny Manziel!), as would surliness (perceived or real) to teammates/fans (Oh hi Cam Newton!).

by ChrisS (not verified) :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 5:33pm

Does Tim Tebow fit category 1)? Or is he too ineffectual to be considered? In general it is hard to be a leader if you don't have some level of competence. If I suck at my job why would you listen to me talk about being a better player/preformer since I obviously can't do it myself?

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 12:26pm

Bobby Layne also paired that trait with a large helping of "didn't-give-a-fuck". So sort of like how James Harrison basically doesn't care about criticism, he might have just ignored the media entirely.

by sundown (not verified) :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 1:24pm

To me, being a strong leader is part of the definition of "great QB." Maybe splitting hairs, but I end up looking at guys who had great tools, but I'd never call them great QBs. Michael Vick might fit that description. Not sure what he was like as a leader, but Randal Cunningham had some awesome skills and at points may have been considered great, at least by some people.

by theslothook :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 2:49pm

I don't think Mike Vick's shortcomings are the result of poor leadership. They are the result of being super athletic but failing at the other aspects of football, namely reading defenses, seeing the entire field, and working within the confines of the pocket. We can also add actually utilizing the entire playbook rather than choice parts(which he admitted to doing).

by sundown (not verified) :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 5:07pm

Point #2 above doesn't say that the poor leadership had to cause problems with the guys's play. But looking over your list of his shortcomings, failing to utilize parts of the playbook just because he selfishly didn't want to would seem to define "poor leader."

by Jerry :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 6:24pm

Two things about Bobby Layne:

-The impression I have from reading about him is that he took teammates drinking with him. He probably had a better capacity for overindulging Saturday nights than his companions did. ("I sleep fast.")

-For all his flaws, both Detroit and Pittsburgh were successful when Layne was their quarterback. (He was the best QB in Steeler history before Bradshaw; I'll let people who know Lions history decide where he ranks there.)

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 11:29pm

In Detroit history? first, second, and fourth. =)

by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Thu, 08/08/2013 - 11:15am

Agreed. It's Layne without question. Stafford will eventually own all of the franchise's yardage records barring injury, but it remains to be seen if his game can develop further. Greg Landry is the only other guy I can think of who comes close to having sustained competence.

by Aaron Brooks Go... :: Thu, 08/08/2013 - 4:54pm

Scott Mitchell, maybe?

But Christ, since Layne, Erik Kramer is the only QB to win 60% or more of his starts as a Lions QB. Layne was 53-29-2. No other sustained starter is over .500*. A shocking number of Lions starters are one game below .500 for their career.

* - Bill Munson went 24-21-3, but never started more than 11 games in a season. He averaged about six games a year. Based on his career, he was a slightly lesser version of Erik Kramer.

by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Thu, 08/08/2013 - 6:19pm

Mitchell had one outstanding year. His other seasons ranged from mediocre to incompetent (facing 8 defenders in the box at all times, mind you).

I actually liked Kramer and wish we kept him after '93. He was good for the Bears in '94 and had a lights out season in '95 (seems like every QB in the division except Trent Dilfer was awesome that year), but could never stay healthy after that.

Everyone else ranged from non-descript to cover-your-eyes awful.

by LionInAZ :: Fri, 08/09/2013 - 11:33pm

I'd offer half a vote for Dave Krieg's regrettably short stint with the Lions in '94. 5-2 record and 31% DVOA. I don't know as much about Layne as I should, but Krieg might very well be the best QB to ever wear a Lions uniform, even if it was only for a year.

by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Sat, 08/10/2013 - 3:41pm

There is a bit of a small sample size alert there, but I remember watching Krieg the second half of '94, and yes, he was awesome. It's too bad he had a bad throwing shoulder going into the wildcard game in Lambeau, because the Lions Defense held Stubbleface in check, and a good passing performance could have stolen a nice road victory.

by LionInAZ :: Mon, 08/12/2013 - 12:23am

Small sample size for 1994, yes, which is why I only put in half a vote. I just had an irrational fantasy that they might have won 10+ games with Krieg and avoided a playoff game at Lambeau if Fontes had only dumped Mitchell sooner.

by Will Allen :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 5:08pm

I dunno, because, like I said, from afar it is pretty much impossible to gauge which people are engaging other people, in a way that promotes better performance. If I had to take a stab at a recent qb who only had mild success but may have been a terrific leader, I'd speculate on Chad Pennington. The guy's physical tools were not great by NFL standards, but he seemed to play really smart, which leads me to believe that he prepared very intelligently, and the guys around him seemed to respond to that. Again, though, unless you were working within the group on a daily basis, you really are just wildly speculating, which, as you note, leads to an large amount of confirmation bias. I might toss Charlie Batch into that speculative mix as well.

This piece made me think of this too much, because I was reminded of a thread here that kind of turned stupidly nasty when Cutler went to the Bears, and I mentioned I had reservations about Cutler because of a story I heard about him having a golf club membership revoked because of his refusal to adhere to a dress code. I said if the story was true, it would cause me concern, and some folks in the forum said I pretty stupid to allow a bunch stuffy golf club members affect my view of an NFL qb. I didn't do a good job at the time of explaining why I would be concerned, but it wasn't because of my reverence for golf or private clubs. It just struck me that you would likely have to be, as starting qb for the Denver Broncos, an unfiltered, unmitigated A-hole, with zero talent for engaging other human beings, to get kicked out of a Denver area golf club, for a habitual dress code violation, and that unfiltered, unmitigated A-holes with zero talent for engaging other human beings rarely inspire other highly talented, highly compensated, people to push their limits. That's fine in a wide receiver, I guess, or maybe if a your're a neurosurgeon commanding a team of surgical nurses, but when you're tasked with the command of other adults with contract guarantees that run into many millions of dollars, that ain't the personality trait that is optimal.

Anyways, like I said, this stuff is pretty near impossible to clearly identify from afar, so speculating about it is of limited value. Like I said, I'm killing time today.

by Mehllageman56 (not verified) :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 8:21pm

Pennington was a great leader, but it wasn't just his leadership skills that mattered, as his ability to read a defense and pick it apart really made him as a quarterback. Early in his Jets career Curtis Martin pretty much set the tone for the team as a leader; he was first to show up, and last to leave, and had a work ethic rivaling Jerry Rice.

by Nathan Forster :: Tue, 08/06/2013 - 8:31pm

This is, of course, a funny and insightful article by Mr. Tanier (big surprise there). So much so, that it led me to calculate the QNI for his royal Favre-ness:

Hamlet, Prince of Denmark
No Super Bowl Ring 0
Playoff Failure 5
Playoff Bumble 2
Overpaid 0
Extracurriculars 2
Appearance 3
Big Market 0
Five Year Linger 2
Recent First Pick 0
Overexposed 2
Championship -4
Legend -2
Total 10

So, yeah, despite bringing nonsense-pocalypse upon us all, ole Bretty scores a rather mediocre 10 on the scale, which is actually pretty generous because the case for saying he had a five year linger and appearance issues (I recall his ridiculous enthusiasm on the field earned him some positive nonsense) is pretty thin. Of course, if you calculate the index for his New York stint, his score goes up, but even so he only has half the QNI of Tony Romo.

Favre's score would probably be higher if points were awarded on a sliding scale, rather than by a lump sum. Favre didn't have all of the factors, but the ones he had he had in spades (multiple playoff bumbles, for example, and if we lump his retirement waffles in with extracurriculars, he has those as well). Also, I think the index puts too much weight on "overpaid," which receives a huge five point bonus. My sense is that being overpaid might drive the news cycle for a few weeks, but it doesn't generate the type of long-term nonsense that the truly nonsensical do.

By the way, in case there's any confusion, my tongue was placed firmly in cheek when I wrote this.

Sorry JPP!

by RickD :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 6:09pm

I think in Favre's later career the value of his one championship has to be considered diminished. There's got to be some "what have you done lately?" factor there. Favre was on a lot of 12- and 13-win teams that didn't win the Super Bowl.

by JMM* (not verified) :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 1:12pm

"nothing can be wrung from Sanchez in 2013 that wasn't squeezed dry in 2012."

Oh ye of little faith. Nonsense will be standing at the end when all else has faded.

by mehllageman56 (not verified) :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 1:57pm

Doubtful. Geno Smith, or in the worst case scenario, Greg McElroy, will be standing or lying down in 2013 where Sanchez was in 2012.

by belindian :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 4:57pm

Where would Johnny Football rank if he was eligible?

by sundown (not verified) :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 5:15pm

Maybe not all that high, given a lot of his recent controversies haven't been about total nonsense. Getting so drunk he overslept and blew off the Manning camp? A legitimate red flag. Putting his eligibility at risk by accepting thousands of dollars for autographs? Legitimate red flag. Even some of his earlier petty little hijinks, like his calling up the cop who gave him a parking ticket then tweeting about how much he hated College Station when the guy wouldn't let him off, raised some legitimate questions about his mindset and personality. I fully expect that there will be stories that some of his teammates hated him. Probably have to wait until he's left college, but I bet they'll come out eventually.

by RickD :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 6:12pm

I would disagree from your definition of "nonsense". That the issues are legitimate shouldn't disqualify them from being considered by the nonsense index.

by Independent George :: Wed, 08/07/2013 - 6:16pm

I agree completely. I don't follow NCAA, so I don't have an opinion on his talent, but all of those seem like legitimately newsworthy stories to me.

by bleeding heart (not verified) :: Fri, 08/09/2013 - 2:08pm

Have the Jets ever had a QB as good as Sanchez? I know he sure takes a lot of heat, and now he has fans wishing he would tear his ACL!
But when I think of the Jets' history, did they ever have anyone better?
It's not like Richard Todd went into New England and beat Tom Brady in the play-offs. Ray Lucas..? Testaverde? Boomer..? O'brien?
This franchise has been cursed with some really, really bad QBs. I'm not so sure Sanchez deserves the hatred.
Is Joe Namath the only other Jets QB that won a many play-off games as Sanchez?
I'm surprised more Jets fans aren't grateful for him.
After all, it wasn't Mark Sanchez that blew a simple field goal attempt in a play-off game & laid on the field crying. And what QB had worse receiving options? I'd say maybe Cam -but even he has Steve Smith. Seems to me bashing Sanchez has kind of become the "in" thing to do; but when I analyze the Jets long, frustrating existence- maybe Sanchez ain't so bad?

by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Fri, 08/09/2013 - 3:07pm

"..went into New England and beat Tom Brady in the play-offs."

Let's be clear about one thing. The Jets' defense beat Tom Brady in the playoffs. All Sanchez did was avoid screwing up. For that matter, it was the Jet's defense that was primarily responsible for their playoff runs in '09-'10.

"Have the Jets ever had a QB as good as Sanchez?"

Do you remember just how good Testaverde was in '98? Ken O'Brien may not have quite lived up to his draft status, but he still had two prolific seasons and at least a couple of other seasons of competence (when he was healthy).

Let me ask you this: If you were a defensive coordinator, which QB would scare you the most, and which one the least?: Mark Sanchez now, Testaverde during his Jets years, or Ken O'Brien in 1985-86?

Numbers-wise, Sanchize has been roughly equivalent to my namesake. The only difference is, that Harrington had zero running game and a defense that ranged from godawful to sub-mediocre. Sanchez, on the other hand, had a fantastic running game, and an outstanding defense that could bail him out of his mistakes.

by LionInAZ :: Mon, 08/12/2013 - 12:34am

Not to mention Chad Pennington, who was wayyyyyyyy better than Sanchez when healthy.