With the Elite Eight already set in stone in March Madness, the folks over at NFL.com have caught the bracketology fever as well. In honor of the craziness that is the NCAA Tournament, NFL.com has put together its own brackets, ranking the top quarterbacks of all time and pitting them against one another in a bracket style competition, and we’ve reached our own Elite Eight.
After defeating Phil Simms in the first round and John Elway in the Sweet Sixteen, Dan Marino’s current matchup within the Generation X bracket has him facing off in the Elite Eight against legendary San Francisco 49ers signal caller Joe Montana, in a re-match of Super Bowl XIX.
Marino played all 17 seasons of his career with the Dolphins and became one of the top, if not the top, passer in league history. A 9-time Pro-Bowler and 3 time first team All-Pro, Marino was the first player ever to throw for 5,000 yards in a single season, and also the first player ever to throw for 40-plus touchdowns in a season. He had possibly the greatest passing season ever by a quarterback in 1984, as #13 tossed 48 touchdowns and threw for 5,084 yards, in an era that was much less favorable to wide receivers and quarterbacks than the current game.
Marino holds 13 NFL passing records, including the most career 400-plus yard passing games (13), and the most game-winning drives in the 4th quarter/overtime in a career with 51. He has the 3rd most passing yardage in NFL history with 61,361, which is 9,886 more yards than the next closest quarterback in Elway. He also has the 3rd most passing touchdowns in NFL history with 420 (120 more than Elway in that category).
At one point, Marino also held the single-season passing records for both touchdowns and passing yardage, but both have since been broken thanks to the NFL’s new emphasis on the passing game and the elite play of quarterbacks such as Peyton Manning, Tom Brady and Drew Brees.
Joe Montana spent 16 seasons in the NFL, 14 of them with the San Francisco 49ers. “Joe Cool” is an 4-time Super Bowl Winner (tied for most in NFL history for a quarterback) and 3-time Super Bowl MVP. He’s posted ridiculous numbers in the big game, throwing 11 touchdowns to zero interceptions, and has been a part of some legendary moments such as “The Catch”, and has 31 come-from behind victories, the most in NFL history. Montana is also a two time NFL MVP.
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With the victory, Marino would move on to face the winner of the Right Now Bracket in the Final Four in either Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers.
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