Who holds the title of Greatest Quarterback of All Time? Most, if not all, would say Tom Brady, but let’s look at the reason why they say that. Terry Bradshaw played with two Hall of Fame wide receivers, Jim Kelly played with Hall of Famer Andre Reed. Not to mention Joe Montana along with Steve Young had arguably the greatest football player of all time in wide receiver Jerry Rice. For years, these quarterbacks have been talked about as the greats but how great we ask.
Most people today would think Terry Bradshaw was a Hall of Famer just off the simple fact he won four Super Bowls. Well just look at his career stats. Bradshaw finished his career with a 51% completion percentage, 27,989 passing yards, and 212 touchdowns for 210 interceptions. Now you may say in his defense, this was not a passing dominant era. But with two wide receivers that went to a combined seven pro bowls and both averaging around 600 yards per year should give any quarterback tremendous help.
Jim Kelly played 10 years and went to four straight Super Bowls with Buffalo’s famous K-Gun offense. Kelly did have 7x pro bowler Andre Reed to throw to. Reed became one of Kelly’s most reliable targets, playing an impressive 234 consecutive games. Reed showed his worth in the biggest games too. During the famous “The Comeback” against the Houston Oilers, He recorded eight receptions for 136 yards and three touchdowns. Not to mention the Super Bowls where he also recorded a combined 27 receptions (second-most in Super Bowl history) and 323 receiving yards (third-most in Super Bowl history).
Joe Montana and Steve Young both played with Jerry Rice who holds all NFL receiving records. Rice is arguably the greatest wide receiver and some say player of all time because of his body of work. Montana had Rice for seven years of his career while Steve Young played with him for eight years.
These quarterbacks were all surrounded by great talent, except Tom Brady. Brady has not played with a top-5 wide receiver in any receiving category in his career. It wasn’t until the 2020 season when he signed with the Buccaneers, Brady had adequate skilled players. So what were his numbers before; 74,571 passing yards, 541 touchdowns, and only 179 interceptions. Not to mention his 14 pro bowl appearances. He is now heading into his 21st NFL season, the 7x Super Bowl champion and 5x Super Bowl MVP will try to add to his legacy.