Why Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees Have Bumped Tom Brady to NFL's Third-Best QB

Jon DoveContributor IDecember 18, 2011

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 04:  (L-R) Donald Driver #80, Aaron Rodgers #12 and Jordy Nelson #87 of the Green Bay Packers celebrate against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on December 4, 2011 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images

Arguing over the list of top NFL quarterbacks always sparks some heated debates. Most fans develop their opinion over time and allow personal feelings to play a role.

For example, most New York Jets fans will hesitate to name Tom Brady the top quarterback. However, a legitimate case can be made that Brady is no longer the top quarterback in the NFL.

This article is not talking about all-time ranking; it focuses on this current season. Both Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees are outplaying Brady. Separating their play is like splitting hairs, but Rodgers and Brees have shown more this season.

Brees leads all three in both yardage (4,368) and completion percentage (70.9). These two stats show how efficient Brees has played. His yardage is through the roof, but he is gaining those yards without a ton of incompletions.

Brees has more passing attempts than any other quarterback in the league, and also has the highest completion percentage.

All Aaron Rodgers has accomplished is leading the Green Bay Packers to a 13-0 record. He accomplished this while also leading the league with a 123.3 quarterback rating, 17.3 points higher than any other quarterback in the league. He also threw the least amount of interceptions (six) between quarterbacks with over 400 passing attempts.

At this point, Tom Brady doesn't lead the league in any major passing stat. His numbers are impressive, but they aren't enough to rank him ahead of Rodgers or Brees. The biggest disappointment for Brady is his 11 interceptions. His four interceptions against the Buffalo Bills actually cost New England a victory.

Brady, Brees and Rodgers are all elite quarterbacks. They all have the potential to lead their team to a Super Bowl title this season. However, I would rank them in his order based on their performance this season:

1. Aaron Rodgers

2. Drew Brees

3. Tom Brady