NFL: Is Aaron Rodgers or Tom Brady the Best Quarterback?

Dan O'BrienContributor IIIOctober 10, 2011

FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 9:   Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots shouts instructions in the first half during a game against the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on October 9, 2011 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

The most important position in the NFL today is quarterback. These players are tasked with managing the game, reading defenses, altering protections and calling audibles, as well as passing the football. One of the most common debates is who is the best in the league. Let's break it down between Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady.

The first thing to look at with a quarterback is wins. Aaron Rodgers has led the Packers to a 5-0 start, while Brady and the Patriots are 4-1. The edge would seemingly go to Rodgers on the surface level, but the Packers' opponents have a record of 10-13 (Chicago is yet to play their week 5 matchup), and the Patriots have an opponents record of 13-11.

Edge: Although you can only play the people on your schedule Brady leads by a nose.

Next, we move on to passing statistics.

QB Rodgers Brady
Cmp % 71.7 67.9
Yds 1,721 1,874
TD 14 14
INT 2 6
QBR 84.8 84.2

Edge: Rodgers wins the passing statistics due to Brady's six interceptions.

The next category is who does more with less talent. The Packers have Greg Jennings, and the Patriots have Wes Welker. Right off the bat we'll have those two cancel each other out. The secondary receivers are Deion Branch vs. Donald Driver, and there is no question that Driver is better. Tight ends favor the Patriots because no other team in the league has tight ends who could match up with Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez. Jermichael Finley is no slouch though and is definitely at least a top 10 TE. Running backs are another stalemate as James Starks and BenJarvus Green-Ellis have a similar amount of talent. The deciding factor is third wideout where Jordy Nelson edges out the drop prone Chad Ochocinco.


Edge: Brady by another slim margin.

Value to the team is the next category. The Packers' defense is more than capable of taking over a game which was on display Sunday night against Atlanta. That, however, cannot be said about New England's defense which is often regarded as the "worst in the league". The game against Buffalo really showed that if Tom Brady is not nearly perfect then the Patriots will have a tough time winning.

Edge: Brady, he needs to be superb week in week out for the Patriots while Rodgers and the Packers have a defense they can rely on.

Mobility is another key factor at the quarterback position. Although Tom Brady is exceptional at moving around the pocket, Aaron Rodgers is on another level. Rodgers and Michael Vick are the two best out of the pocket and scrambling quarterbacks in the league. If you watch Rodgers on tape it is very clear he is also the best throw on the run quarterback in the NFL.

Edge: Rodgers by a landslide.

The final and deciding category is experience. Both Rodgers and Brady are Super Bowl winners and veteran quarterbacks. Even though Rodgers has won a Super Bowl he still could use more experience. On the other hand, Tom Brady has been through it all, an injury that took his 2008 season, multiple playoffs and Super Bowl wins, including fourth-quarter comebacks. Brady is the most experienced active quarterback, and it shows when he plays. Brady has a knack for spotting coverages and blitz packages which is displayed when he has six seconds to throw the ball on a blitz.

Edge: Brady has much more experience than Rodgers.

Final Determination: By a count of 4-2 Brady edges out Rodgers. Although I don't deny that Aaron Rodgers will be the premier quarterback in the NFL come 2013. Right now Tom Brady is still better.