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Green Bay Packers: Titletown's Top 10 Quarterbacks of All Time

J FCorrespondent IMay 10, 2011

Green Bay Packers: Titletown's Top 10 Quarterbacks of All Time

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    GREEN BAY, WI - NOVEMBER 11: Brett Favre #4 of the Green Bay Packers talks with  Aaron Rodgers #12 during the game against the Minnesota Vikings give chase on November 11, 2007 at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Imag
    Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

    The Green Bay Packers began play in 1921 and have had over 30 quarterbacks start a game during the team's 90 year existence. One could argue that the Green and Gold have had the best collection of quarterbacks in NFL history.

    While some have seen limited action behind center, one has started over 200 consecutive games for the Pack. Yet a few have won four or five titles for Titletown and the QB with all those starts in a row only won one.

    So what do you look at when compiling a ranking of Green Bay's best quarterbacks of all time?

    Numbers are a factor because it is a well-known truth that they do not lie. Statistics and longevity go hand in hand. But what really matters most is success in big games.

    Championships certainly count when you're talking about a team with 13 of them, more than any other franchise. While winning isn't everything, it sure is important if the Super Bowl trophy is named after your team's former coach.

    Since it was probably easier to win titles when there were less teams to compete with, I'll give a little more credit to those QBs who managed to lead their team to Super Bowl victories.

    However, you must also remember that in the older days, players often contributed at multiple positions.

    There are many factors that can easily be debated and it comes down to a matter of opinion. So, admire and remember the men who have cemented their names on this list of the top 10 quarterbacks who have ever played for the NFL's most historic franchise, the Green Bay Packers.

10. David Whitehurst

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    David Whitehurst, the father of the Seahawks' Charlie Whitehurst, quarterbacked two seasons for the Pack in the late '70s when Lynn Dickey went down with a broken leg and served as his backup upon his return.

    Whitehurst only passed for just over 2,000 yards and 10 TDs in both of his seasons as a starter.

    However, he accomplished just enough to earn the last spot on this list with 28 TDs and 6, 205 yards. Let's just say the cheers at Lambeau were probably pretty loud when Lynn Dickey returned to action.

9. Randy Wright

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    Randy Wright competed in five seasons for the Packers from 1984 until 1988 when he was succeeded by Don Majkowski.

    Wright only started one full season in 1986 and he never threw more touchdowns than interceptions.

    Nevertheless, he still put up 7,106 yards and 31 TDs over the course of his career.

8. Cecil Isbell

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    Cecil Isbell, who was originally a tail back at Purdue, was a first-round pick by the Packers in the 1938 NFL Draft.

    Curly Lambeau used him as both a running back and a quarterback during his five seasons in Green Bay. In his rookie season, he led the team in both rushing and passing even though he played alongside superstar Arnie Herber who also played both positions.

    Isbell threw a touchdown pass in the Packers fifth title, a 27-0 shutout in a championship rematch with the Giants in 1939. The team never returned to the big game during Isbell's career, but his personal success continued.

    In 1941, Isbell set yardage records while leading the league in passing, partly because he had one of the first star receivers in the NFL to throw to: Hall of Famer Don Hutson.

    Isbell was never inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame, but he was enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame in 1967.

    Cecil contributed to a dynamic Packers offense on the ground and also racked up 5,945 yards and 61 TDs through the air. He even caught passes for the Pack when Herber lined up behind center.

    Isbell was an all-around offensive producer in the NFL's early days. He could be higher on this list, but it's based on quarterbacking ability and Green Bay has been blessed with greater at the position.

7. Tobin Rote

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    Known for his scrambling and toughness, Tobin Rote also served the Packers as a successful rusher and passer from 1950-1956.

    His 1956 season was a thing of beauty as he was the Packers offense. Rote led the league in passing yards and touchdowns and finished second in rushing on his way to the Pro Bowl.

    Rote was inducted into the Packers Hall of Fame with 11,535 yards and 89 TDs passing, and he is one of the top rushing quarterbacks of all time.

6. Don Majkowski

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    Don "The Majik Man" Majkowski was the quarterback in Green Bay during the late 1980s before Brett Favre came onto the scene.

    He is best known and loved by Packer backers for one play during his 1989 Pro Bowl season. Majkowski threaded the needle for a TD against the rival Bears in the opener just before going out of bounds.

    The pass was ruled illegal because it appeared he had crossed the line of scrimmage. However, replay reversed the call to the joy of the crowd at Lambeau and the Packers went on to win.

    The Majik Man finished second behind Joe Montana in the MVP voting that season as the Pack finished 10-6.

    In addition to being an elite scrambler, Majkowski threw for 10,870 yards and an equal number of touchdowns and interceptions for Green Bay (56) in five seasons.

    A torn ligament in his ankle sidelined him early in 1992 and he lost his job to the man who would go on to lead the Packers for over a decade.

    Majkowski never threw another pass for the Pack, but did make it into the Packers Hall of Fame.

5. Lynn Dickey

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    Nope, that's not Aaron Rodgers wearing No. 12 for the Packers in this photo. It's eight year starter Lynn Dickey who was one of the Pack's most accurate passers during the 1970s and 1980s.

    Dickey amassed 21,369 yards and 133 TDs during his career and set a Packers single season record in 1983 with 4,458 passing yards.

    His other franchise records include a 90.48 completion percentage in a game, 418 passing yards in a game, and an average gain of 9.21 yards for a single season.

    However, Dickey played during a rough time for Titletown's team and often hurt his chances to win with costly interceptions; he had 151 in his career.

    Dickey's leadership and performance as the quarterback in Green Bay for nearly a decade made him worthy of his induction into the Packers Hall of Fame and worthy of being in the top five of this list.

4. Arnie Herber

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    A Green Bay native, Arnie Herber gifted his city with four championships in the 1930s.

    He was frequently at the top of the passing charts and also benefited from the arrival of Don Hutson. As a running back, Herber could rack up the yards as well.

    After gradually losing time to Cecil Isbell, Herber retired as a champion after 11 seasons playing for Curly Lambeau.

    Herber was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1966 with 6,749 passing yards and 66 passing TDs as a Packer.

    One could argue that the likes of Isbell and Herber cannot be compared to contemporary quarterbacks because the passing game has evolved since their time. However, Herber definitely deserves recognition for being one of the top players on a dominant Green Bay squad that was playing in championships left and right.

3. Aaron Rodgers

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    ARLINGTON, TX - FEBRUARY 06:  Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers throws a pass against the Pittsburgh Steelers during Super Bowl XLV at Cowboys Stadium on February 6, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. The Packers won 31-25. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Im
    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    There are probably many Packers fans that would love to push Aaron Rodgers to the top of this list as they come off the high of the team's Super Bowl XLV victory of which Rodgers was the MVP.

    Ever since he took over for Favre, he has been one of the most efficient passers under pressure in the NFL. He is first all time in career passer rating in the regular season (98.4) and in the post season (112.6).

    Rodgers' interception percentage sits at 1.99 percent, an area in which his predecessor struggled, and he is one of the most athletic scramblers among quarterbacks as well.

    He's the king of facing adversity and the ultimate leader, handling every situation he faces with unmistakable class and poise.

    Rodgers is already in the top five in passing yards and touchdowns all time for the Packers after three seasons as a starter. The exciting thing is, it appears he is only getting started.

    Rodgers already has one Pro Bowl selection and Super Bowl MVP under his "Championship Belt" and he will have the opportunity to bump himself up on this list if he can pick up a few more.

2. Brett Favre

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    EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 29:  Quarterback Brett Favre #4 of the Green Bay Packers scrambles for yards during the NFL game against the New York Jets at Giants Stadium on December 29, 2002 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Jets won 42-17.  (Photo by
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    Where do you start with the legend's NFL records?

    Brett Favre holds the honors of the most career touchdown passes, yards, completions, attempts, interception, consecutive starts, victories, sacks and fumbles.

    With the gunslinger leading the offense, the Packers were forced to take the good with the bad. However, Favre started every game for Green Bay from 1992-2007 and gave cheeseheads plenty to cheer for, including a victory in Super Bowl XXXI.

    Brett Favre won the NFL MVP three consecutive times from 1995-1997, yet another record he can call his own. He is also an 11-time Pro Bowler.

    Packers fans will soon get over the bitterness of Brett's departure and remember what No.4 gave to their favorite franchise—many exciting moments, 442 TDs, 61,665 yards, and 16 seasons of unparalleled toughness.

1. Bart Starr

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    After the Packers most recent title, newspaper articles read "Rodgers plays like a Starr."

    Bart Starr is the best quarterback to ever suit up for the Green Bay Packers and all the others can only be compared to his greatness.

    He is considered to be one of the best field generals of his era and he even called his own plays; the most gutsy was a goalline sneak to lead the Pack over the Cowboys in the Ice Bowl.

    In 16 seasons, Starr won five NFL champions including the first two Super Bowls, both of which he was the MVP. He also won the league MVP in 1966 and was selected to four Pro Bowls.

    Bart Starr is obviously a Hall of Famer and his number is retired at Lambeau. He ranks second, behind Favre, in both yards and touchdowns all time in the Packers record book, but there is little doubt that he deserves to be known as Titletown's top quarterback.

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