Philip Rivers: Tom Brady, other elite QBs can't be judged solely by Super Bowl wins

Philip Rivers: Tom Brady, other elite QBs can't be judged solely by Super Bowl wins

The debate over the greatest quarterback of all time isn’t likely to be settled … ever, but Philip Rivers has some thoughts on criteria that should be used in the argument. 

In an appearance on the “Dan Patrick Show” this week, the Chargers QB discussed how best to determine GOAT status, specifically in the context of evaluating where Tom Brady stands all-time. 

“It’s a crazy deal in a sense because the quarterback and the head coach are the only ones that are tied to the record,” Rivers noted, before going on to use New England’s thrilling Super Bowl 49 win over Seattle to make his point. 

A refresher: Brady led the Patriots back to take a 28-24 lead with two minutes to play, but Russell Wilson drove the Seahawks to New England’s 1-yard line with 26 seconds left. There, Seattle inexplicably chose not to run Marshawn Lynch, and Malcolm Butler intercepted a Wilson pass to seal the win for the Patriots. 

“I remember thinking when the Patriots beat the Seahawks, when they had the interception against the Seahawks down there … in that game that gave them their fifth championship, Brady’s fifth, everybody said, ‘Well, he’s now the greatest of all time.’ And I thought to myself, I already thought he was one of (the greatest), but how do you ever decide that?” Rivers said. “It’s like the old Michael Jordan (argument), right, we can talk about that forever, too.

“I already thought he was one of the greatest of all time, but because they intercepted the pass, he’s now the greatest of all time? What if the Seahawks would have ran it in and the Seahawks would’ve won? Brady just played the exact same game, he didn’t do anything different. So it is funny how that works.

“I don’t look at that. That’s why I always think (Dan) Marino’s right there in the mix, too. You can’t just go off that. … Not in this sport, especially.”

While Rivers didn’t say one way or the other where he thinks Brady stands in the GOAT debate, he also shouted out the likes of Aaron Rodgers, for his 338-to-80 touchdown-to-interception ratio and “pure ability to throw the football,” and Peyton Manning for his awareness and anticipation. 

Rivers did make one thing clear, however: He does not consider himself a better QB than the Patriots legend, whom he’s never beaten in eight tries. 

“A Brady-led team vs. a Rivers-led team, we’re 0-fer,” he said, “so that does tell you a little bit, head-to-head.”