Brett Favre vs. Aaron Rodgers: Definitive Tale of the Tape
When Brett Favre decided to sign with the Minnesota Vikings, he became one of the most polarizing players in Packers history. One could argue he had already earned that title when he was traded to the Jets a year earlier.
As Favre's popularity decreased in Wisconsin, his replacement, Aaron Rodgers, gained approval at a similar pace.
At first, Rodgers was good but not great. After a few seasons, he's now become the game's best QB.
Still, it brings up the question. Does that make him better than Favre?
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Coming out of college, Rodgers didn't possess the rocket he does today.
With little to do but improve while sitting behind Favre, Rodgers added the extra muscle that makes him one of the strongest throwers in the NFL today.
Favre's arm strength might have been his biggest attribute, as his canon perhaps the best in NFL history.
Both QBs possess the ability to zip balls into tight windows and also complete the long throw at will.
The fact remains, Favre is his prime was the gold standard for football launching.
Advantage: Favre (slightly)
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Rodgers is one of the most accurate passers in the game today.
As opposed to his predecessor, he's patient and waits for his receivers to gain separation before delivering the ball accurately.
While Favre made plenty of throws with pin-point precision, he was rather inconsistent due to a variety of factors.
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Coming out of Cal, Rodgers had nice mechanics, but his tendency to hold the ball so high sometimes hindered the arc on his deep ball.
Rodgers sat for a few years behind Favre while McCarthy & Co. helped adjust his grip, giving him a faster, more fluid delivery. His mechanics are textbook.
Favre threw more from his hip and delivered the ball with an unnecessary wind-up motion.
Favre's mechanics weren't textbook, but they still worked for him because his talent level oftentimes out-shined the flaws in his delivery.
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Other than his early career decision to sport a mustache, Rodgers' decision-making is pretty good.
As mentioned earlier, he's patient and doesn't normally try to force the ball into coverage unless absolutely necessary.
That's a far cry from the Mississippi man's resumé.
Favre made many questionable decisions throughout his career, often trying to force the ball into tight coverage, likely because of his supreme confidence in his arm.
His confidence came into play other times when he held onto the ball too long, thinking he could make a play out of nothing when he should've just gotten rid of it.
This is probably Favre's biggest weakness and one of Rodgers' fortes.
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This kind of separates into two different categories: the ability to extend the play with your feet and the actual ability to pick up yards on the ground.
Both quarterbacks can extend plays with their feet and direct their receivers on the move. Rodgers is a little bit better at this because he's a dual threat.
Favre was mediocre at this earlier on in his career, but as he aged, his mobility predictably dwindled.
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Though this doesn't show up on tape as much as the others, it had to be included.
Both of these players are leaders. Rodgers has a more cool, calm demeanor, but isn't necessarily the biggest leader on his own team.
Favre is more intense, but had fun with what he did and the team knew that their quarterback was going to control the team.
Another key factor in this is toughness.
Rodgers is tough. Favre is tougher. His consecutive starts streak of 297 is a testament to that, and he's the toughest QB ever to play the game, both physically and mentally.
Name something you'd consider an intangible. Favre's got it.
When it came down to it, the game lived and died by No.4.
Making a final verdict on something like this is always tricky.
While you can see that Rodgers won four of the six rounds, one might argue that the varying importance of each category makes it a lot different, as a player can win games pretty much on intangibles alone (see: Tebow, Tim).
This is an oft-debated topic and people sometimes forget just how dominant Favre was in his prime. They also fail to consider how much better Rodgers' group of receivers is.
Still, it's hard to ignore Rodgers' efficiency.
This argument will obviously be re-evaluated at the end of Rodgers' career, but you've been promised a verdict and a verdict is what you shall get.
Advantage: Rodgers (slightly)