NFL Playoffs: Jets Stun Patriots, And Tom Brady Makes Peyton Manning Look Good

Erik PaulCorrespondent IJanuary 16, 2011

FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 16:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots looks on near the end of their 28 to 21 loss to the New York Jets in their 2011 AFC divisional playoff game at Gillette Stadium on January 16, 2011 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

When the New York Jets beat Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts last week, there was an abundance of articles about Manning's lack of playoff success and his impending demise.

Everyone was talking about how Manning would never be as good as Tom Brady is in the playoffs; that Tom Brady is simply the best when the regular season ends.

My, how the tables have turned.

Brady turned in, at best, a mediocre performance against the same Jets that beat Manning last week.

Manning went 18-for-26 for 225 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions last week. He had a 69.2 percent completion percentage, an average completion of 12.5 yards and a very respectable QB rating of 108.7.

Brady went 29-for-45 for 299 yards, two touchdowns and one interception this week. He had a 64.4 percent completion percentage, an average completion of 10.3 yards and a QB rating of 89.0.

Brady's 89.0 isn't terrible, but his regular season rating was 111.0 and he hasn't been as bad as 89.0 since Week 7. Manning went the other way, posting 16.8 points higher than his regular season rating of 91.9.

I understand that rating isn't everything, and Brady did have 11 more completions and 74 more yards than Manning, but several other key factors swing things Manning's way.

Brady was sacked five times despite regularly having a lot of time in the pocket. Brady seemed unwilling to scramble and just took the sacks frequently, including one for a fumble that Brady was lucky the Patriots recovered.

Also, considering that Manning was missing two of his favorite targets in Dallas Clark and Austin Collie, it was a pretty good day for Peyton.

Furthermore, both QBs scored on four possessions, but Brady had the ball 11 times to Manning's eight (not including one possession at the end of the first half when both took a knee to kill the clock). Two of Brady's possessions also resulted in two turnovers on downs.

Obviously, this whole discussion is a moot point, since both teams were beaten by the somewhat surprising Jets, but this is a look at the clutch performances for all those Brady fans who think he's superior to Peyton Manning.