Monday, December 5, 2016

#201

Yesterday, Tom Brady did something pretty incredible. He won his 201st game as an NFL starting quarterback. It's an incredible accomplishment. The most amazing part is that he's not done yet. Another half dozen or so this year isn't out of the question. And from there, he can really stretch this thing out.

Which really makes me wonder. Why isn't he considered, hands down, the best quarterback ever? Oh sure, most everyone puts him in the conversation. And, lots of people even have him in that spot. But, why is it even a question. 

I've asked myself the question a lot. Why isn't he Derek Jeter?

I mean, I'm not saying that wins are the ultimate stat. I'm not saying that picking the best of all time is as simple as turning to one stat, and seeing who's the highest. I'm also not sure that "wins" mean very much when they're assigned to an individual in a team sport. But, I do know one thing. They mean a lot more when they're assigned to an NFL quarterback than when assigned to an MLB shortstop. But, nobody had any problem giving them to Jeter. Remember the big debates? Yankees fans admitted that ARod or Nomar had better stats. But, Jeter had the rings. He knew how to win!

Shouldn't Brady get the same consideration?

But, there's more. Brady actually has the personal stats too! He's won MVP awards. He's set passing records. He's led the league in just about any statistical category you can think of. You could make a case that he's the best ever based on stats alone. Jeter could never come close to that!

So, here you have Jeter, who many people want to elevate to greatness based entirely on team win totals. On the other hand, you have Brady who has those team wins, but actually adds in elite personal stats, and you still have people wavering. "Well, Manning has a lot of stats." "Well Montana has lots of rings too." They're able to elevate with just half of Brady's argument. How is that even possible?

What's keeping Brady back? Because he's good looking? So was Jeter, apparently. Because his team wins too much? The Yankees did that. Because the his team is despised? The Yankees? Hello!

So, why isn't this easier? Time and time again we award greatness based on team victories. We award greatness based on postseason performances. We award greatness on statistical excellence. We award greatness to great guys.

With all of those reasons rolled into one, why isn't Brady elevated to a level never seen before?

Especially after win number 201.

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