More Brilliance from Tanier

Normally, this would be a ‘Daily Links’ piece, but I want to make sure that everyone sees it.

Mike Tanier, friend of and member of the Football Outsiders, has followed up his brilliant piece on Manning and Unitas with a discussion of comparing quarterbacks across eras.

If you note in the comments of the previous piece, I (under the long lost pseudonym of Deshawn Zombie) got into quite the debate on how to compare quarterbacks across eras. Tanier follows up on that debate and his thoughts are invaluable.

Among the interesting aspects of Tanier’s piece yesterday is his logic about what quarterback he would chose if he could pick just one:

If I could have one quarterback in history to get me through one game, I would select Joe Montana.

If I could have one quarterback in history to get me through a contemporary season or series of seasons, I would select Peyton Manning.

I don’t believe in magical “winner sauce,” but I think it’s contrary to ignore the fact that Montana was very successful in Super Bowls and other “big” games. He was also pretty damn successful in small games, so I want both his talent and any tangible grace under fire he possesses if I am trying to win one important game. I want Manning’s durability and his ability to be a centerpiece and framework for a system if I need a quarterback for the long haul.

But I only want Manning if we are playing contemporary football — modern fields, modern rules.

It’s worth a read, so be sure not to miss it.