With all the talk about the 2010 Raiders and what roster moves they should make, etc, etc. I felt a need to switch gears for a moment and delve into our past in an effort to shed some light on a grievous wrong that needs to be corrected.
NFL Network has run and re-run a segment on the Top 10 Clutch QB's where our beloved Ken Stabler was ranked #6 on the list. I intend to shed some light on our "Clutch QB" body of work and why he deserves to be in the NFL Hall of Fame, with comparisons being made to his Alabama Crimson Tide teammate, Joe Namath.
"Broadway" Joe, Joe Willie, Joe Namath, #12 or how ever you want to refer to him has certainly made a name for himself and solidified his place in football history. He started with a National Championship win for the Crimson Tide in 1964 where he was coached by legendary Paul "Bear" Bryant.
His athletic prowess and also good timing allowed him to be a trailblazer of sorts when he passed up the then established NFL to play for its competitor, the AFL for the New York Jets in 1964 and eventually helped them win their one and only Super Bowl in 1968 over the then Baltimore Colts. He was a high profile QB who played before and after the NFL-AFL merger in 1970.
College: Alabama: 1962 - 1964
Years Played: 13 (5 before the NFL-AFL Merger) 1965 - 1977
Yards: 27, 663
QB Rating: 65.5
Pro Bowls: 1
Super Bowls: 1
NFL MVP's: 0
*All Pro's: 1
*AFL MVP's: 2
Hall of Fame: Yes - 1985
Notable: Namath was the American Football League Rookie of the year
in 1965 and became the first professional quarterback to pass for 4,000
yards in a season (1967) when he threw for 4,007 yards.
Ken "Snake" Stabler played for the Crimson Tide as well and was also coached by Paul "Bear" Bryant. He was a red shirt freshman when Joe Namath led the the Tide to a National Championship win in 1964. Stabler would get his turn to shine when as a Junior he led his team to an undefeated (11-0) record and beat the pants off Nebraska in the Sugar Bowl. Due to unfair poll ranking, he didn't get the chance to lead the Tide to a National Championship game.
He would be drafted to the Oakland Raiders in the second round of the 1968 draft. Known more for his accurate passes than his arm strength, he still managed to stretch the field with long passes to world class sprinter Cliff Branch. With a host of future Hall of Famer's, Snaker would eventually lead the Raiders to the promise land in 1977 and beat the Vikings to win the Super Bowl.
Stabler has the fortune and one misfortune of playing in some of the most memorable and most talked about games in NFL History such as "The Holy Roller", "Ghost to the Post","The Sea of Hands", and "The Immaculate Reception".
College: Alabama: 1964 - 1967
Years Played: 15 1970 - 1984
Yards: 27, 983
QB Rating: 75.3
Pro Bowls: 4
Super Bowls: 1
NFL MVP's: 1
*All Pro's: 2
AFC MVP's: 2
AFC Champion: 5
Hall of Fame: No
Notable: Stabler was the fastest to win 100 games as a starting
quarterback, having done so in 150 games, which bettered Johnny
Unitas previous mark of 153 games. Since then, only Joe Montana and
Tom Brady have reached 100 wins more quickly. He also led NFL in
Passing Touchdowns in 1974 and 1976.
Now I honestly can't attest to any of these stats or feats of football greatness first hand because I wasn't born until 1975. However, we do have film footage, eye witness accounts and stats to go by and when I compare these findings, Ken Stabler has just as much of a right to be in the Hall of Fame as Joe Namath does. I honestly believe that the HOF nominations aren't so much as what you accomplished in your career sometimes but rather if the voting committee likes you or not. Basically a popularity contest. Because Snake played on one of if not the most hated team in the NFL and because he had his off the field interests (women....like all football players don't have these), he isn't going to get that HoF nod anytime soon.
Numbers don't lie guys. Look back at the slides and compare the stats.
As a cursory overview of their comparison, Stabler had a better QB rating, the same number of Super Bowl rings, more NFL MVP's, more Pro Bowl selections and more All Pro's selections. I'm begging to think that this is a conspiracy to keep more old school Raiders out of the Hall of Fame.
Snake needs to be in the Hall of Fame ASAP!
Any objections, criticisms, or general comments, lets hear it below.
Like it if you like it.