Brett Favre, Mediocre?

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That’s what a commenter called “Cheeseheads” wrote to protest our labeling of Peyton Manning as a “whiner.”  This Manning fan also wrote that Favre has been “stuck in mediocrity” for years.  (Anyone in reading the entire comment can do so at the end of this post.  If you do read it, be sure to treat yourself to PackerBelle’s devastating smack-down immediately afterwards.)  Let me address that second point first, because it’s so easily dispensed with, and return to the second.

A quick check NFL.com’s passing statistics rankings for 2007 show that this guy simply has no idea what he’s talking about.  Brett Favre is #4, Peyton Manning is #7.  Favre had three fewer touchdowns than Manning and one more interception.  But Favre had more yards, a higher completion percentage, a higher yards/game average and was sacked six fewer times than the cement-legged Manning.  Put simply: Favre was better this year than Peyton Manning.  And Favre was statistically the fourth best quarterback.  That’s not mediocre.

The “interception machine” point is something you hear frequently about Favre.  Yes, the guy threw a lot of interceptions.  288 to be precise.  But what this kind of claim fails to recognize is that Favre threw more passes than any other quarterback in NFL history.  When you consider interceptions-per-attempt, Favre’s numbers are worse than several Hall of Fame quarterbacks and better than several others.

Brett Favre

Att: 8759

Int: 288

Ratio: .0328

Peyton Manning

Att: 5405

Int: 153

Ratio: .0283

Joe Montana

Att: 5391

Int: 139

Int: .0257

Troy Aikman

Att: 4715

Int: 141

Ratio: .0299

Steve Young

Att: 4149

Int: 107

Ratio: .026

Dan Marino

Att: 8358

Int: 252

Ratio: .301

Johnny Unitas

Att: 5186

Int: 253

Ratio: .0487

Bart Starr

Att: 3149

Int: 138

Ratio: .0438

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4 Responses to “Brett Favre, Mediocre?”

  1. Aaron Says:

    You dignified ‘Cheeseheads’ with an actual POST?

  2. sfhayes Says:

    Nah, just used the comment to make two points I’d wanted to make anyway. That’s why I didn’t post the whole thing.

    Coming back at you on the grades issue when I’ve got five mins.

  3. Aaron Says:

    I have no doubt.
    ;)

  4. toolkien Says:

    Well Marino threw a lot of INT’s and Unitas and Starr were from a different era. Tarkenton was “the man” because he had numbers closer today’s QB #’s as far as INT’s.

    The sport has changed so dramatically as far as being within the same zip code as receivers. This accounts for the change in the # of INT’s from the older generation to the modern generation.

    As for the modern generation alone, the difference between .021 and .039 is a LOT.

    Lastly Favre’s regular season INT’s went down later on in his career, but not in the playoffs when the pressure was on.

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