The Instigator
Ls4baseball
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Danielle
Con (against)
Winning
11 Points

Ben Roethlisberger is the best QB out of the 2004 NFL draft

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/2/2010 Category: Sports
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,903 times Debate No: 13541
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (19)
Votes (3)

 

Ls4baseball

Pro

In this Debate I proclaim Ben Roethlisberger as the best quarterback out of the 2004 NFL draft which consisted of Ben Roethlisberger, Eli Manning, and Philip Rivers among others.

For the first round I simply ask my opponent to give brief introduction and state which QB he believes is the best out of the 2004 NFL draft.
Danielle

Con

Many thanks to my opponent for beginning this debate :)

I'll be arguing that Phil Rivers of the San Diego Chargers is the best Quarterback in the NFL to be drafted from 2004. As requested, I'll keep this round brief and allow my opponent to make the opening arguments. Thanks and good luck.
Debate Round No. 1
Ls4baseball

Pro

I would like to thank accepting this debate and wish him good luck.

First i would like to state the three main contentions for proving Ben Roethlisberger the best QB of the group, for the purpose of the debate I will refrain from Eli Manning at all as i assume we can both agree to him being irrelevant at this point.

1.)Ben Roethlisberger is a better QB statistically than Philip Rivers when considering the regular season and playoffs.

2.)Ben Roethlisberger is a better winner than Philip Rivers.

3.)Ben Roethlisberger is a better QB based on passer rating, than Philip Rivers when considering the regular season and playoffs.

These are my main contentions and I also summit that these are the only main tools for evaluating which QB is better outside of intangibles(which I personally believe Big Ben is superior in) which are immeasurable.

Contention # 1 is statistics. QB's are judged very strongly on the ability to put up the numbers. I believe more emphasis should be put on playoff stats, as that is the most important time for a QB to show his ability, but that a considerable amount must also go towards the regular season as well. Lets take a look at the numbers.

Ben Roethlisberger–Through six NFL regular seasons(into his 7th), Ben has amassed a total of 20,056 yards and 132 touchdowns with 83 interceptions. He has completed 1,578 passes out of 2,493 attempts for 63.3%.

In the playoffs, Roethlisberger has thrown for 2,239 yards, 15 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions. He has completed 172 passes of 278 attempts for a completion percentage of 61.9%.

Philip Rivers–Through six NFL regular seasons(into his 7th), Philip has thrown for 17,600 yards and 121 touchdowns with 52 interceptions. He has completed 1,405 passes out of 2,220 attempts for a completion percentage of 63.3%.

In the playoffs, Rivers has thrown for 1,820 yards while also throwing eight touchdowns and nine interceptions. Philip has completed 134 passes out of 229 attempts for a completion percentage of 58.5%.

I believe these statistics show comparable numbers in the regular season (Ben yards and TD's, Rivers with less Interceptions, and both with the same completion percentage). But when comparing the playoff stats it is obvious without a doubt Big Ben shows up for the big games much better then Philip Rivers (more yards, more TD's, less INT's, and a higher completion percentage). Because of similar regular season stats, and overwhelmingly superior playoff stats of Ben Roethlisberger, it is clear Big Ben is the better statistical QB.

Next is possibly the most important part when considering a QB's legacy. The Quarterback position more then any other position in football is judged primarily by there ability to win games(As Herm Edwards famously put it "YOU PLAY TO WIN THE GAME"). So lets take a look at how these QB's compare at being a winner.

Ben Roethlisberger– Wins:63 Losses:27 Win Percentage .700
Playoff Wins: Eight Playoff Losses:Two Playoff Win Percentage .800
Super Bowl Victories: Two

Philip Rivers– Wins:49 Losses:24 Win Percentage .671
Playoff Wins: Three Playoff Losses: Four Playoff Win Percentage .428
Super Bowl Victories: Zero

Big Ben with more regular season wins, higher win percentage, more than double the playoff wins, half the playoff losses, a higher playoff winning percentage, and two more SB victories is unquestionably more of a winner then Rivers.

Finally the final contention I have for Ben being a better QB then Rivers is Passer rating. The passer rating was developed to determine a passers effectiveness and efficiency as a passer. So once again lets go ahead and look at the numbers.

Ben Roethlisberger- Regular Season- 92.1 Playoffs- 87.2

Philip Rivers- Regular Season- 96.3 Playoffs- 79.2

Once again comparable regular season passer rating, with a substantial difference in the playoffs where it counts. I believe these numbers show once again that Big Ben is the better QB.

So in order for Con to win this debate I believe he must both refute my contentions of Ben being a better statistical passer, a better winner, and having a better passer rating, all putting forth more substantial arguments for Philip Rivers being a better Quarterback, both of which I find implausible, but I will leave the opportunity to my opponent, and the judgments to you, the voter.
Danielle

Con

Before I begin, I'd like to clarify that I am a female.

Thanks and good luck!

***

In determining which QB is the superior player, I will also be providing statistics including that of passer rating. However, Pro mentioned that Ben R. is a "better winner" than Phil Rivers, which is not at all specific regarding the actual skills or qualities he is talking about. Moreover, an important aspect and contention of mine in this debate will be evaluating the performance of the two Quarterbacks in particular instead of comparing the performance of their respective teams. In other words, just because the Steelers have found more playoff and Superbowl success than the Chargers has no bearing on the comparisons that can be made between the two QBs themselves, as quite obviously football is a team sport than no QB can win alone. Indeed it would be incredibly easy for me to demonstrate that the Steelers have had the superior team and staff between 2004 - 2010, so consideration as to the performance of these QBs individually must try to be discerned separately apart from their team's success.

***

CONTENTION 1: STATISTICS

1A) Pro begins by pointing out that Ben has accumulated more passing yards and touchdowns than Phil in the 6 years that they've been playing. However, Ben has played in a total of 90 games to date, whereas Phil has only played in 76 games to date. Phil was actually the third-string QB on the Chargers for quite some time; it took years for him to earn the starting position. In other words, it's not surprising that Ben has 11 more TD passes considering he's played in 14 more games. In fact, if you look at the averages, Ben therefore has averaged 1.46 TD passes per game, whereas Phil averages 1.59. Phil averages more TD passes than Ben.

1B) Ben and Phil have the exact same completion percentage, meaning Ben has not proven to be superior in this regard.

1C) Pro again emphasizes playoff performance, noting that Ben has put up ridiculously higher numbers than Phil. This of course is very misleading considering the Chargers have played in significantly less playoff games than the Steelers! This is an example of using the respective teams of each QB to determine which QB is superior. I contend that due to playoff appearances (the disparity in number), there is a better way to determine if a QB is able to put up big numbers in crunch time -- See point 4B.

1D) Let's look at overall career statistics to date. Phil's QB rating is 96.3 in comparison to Ben's 92.1. Phil also averages over 231 yards per game compared to Ben's 222.

1E) Because the resolution is present-tense, it presumes we should look to this season in particular (while considering the others) in determining who *IS* the best QB and not necessarily who was in past seasons. So far, Phil has thrown for 2,649 pass yards compared to Ben's 754. While Ben did miss 4 games, we can look to averages to determine who's doing the better passing: Phil's averaging 331 YPG compared to Ben's 251.

***

CONTENTION 2: WINNING

Once again, note that a team with overall better players and coaches is going to win more games than a team with lesser quality players and coaches but a superior QB. If Peyton Manning or Tom Brady were traded to the Cleveland Browns today, would the Browns magically make the playoffs? Of course not. In fact they'd probably continue losing. Nevertheless, the 2006-2007 season is when Phil started as QB for the Chargers, so let's look at their stats from then on.

2006 - 07

Chargers: 14-2
Steelers: 8-8

2007 - 08

Chargers: 11-5
Steelers: 10-6

2008 - 09

Chargers: 8-8
Steelers: 12-4

2009 - 10

Chargers: 13-3
Steelers: 9-7

In other words, the Chargers have won 7 more games with Phil as starting QB than the Steelers have won with Ben as starting QB in the past four seasons. A major flaw with Pro's analysis in win percentage is that it gives Big Ben significantly more games to work with considering he played in 26 games his first two NFL seasons in comparison to Phil's 4. Also, Pro's numbers are wrong. Ben has a .705 career win percentage to Phil's .676. However again we have to look at the teammates and coaches that these players are working with, and the fact that Phil did not really get to play his first two seasons. If we use his averages from later seasons to estimate what his performance would have been his first two seasons, his numbers would actually excel past Ben's. In his first starting season after playing just 4 NFL games he took the Chargers to 14-2. This is admirable once again considering the fact that he played on a less impressive team than Ben. For instance, in 2007 Rivers helped the Chargers win their first playoff game since 1994 whereas the Steelers have been no strangers to post-season success.

Note: Rivers defeated Ben and the Steelers in their first meeting.

Also note: The Chargers' only other real star at this time was L. Tomlinson, a RB. This means a lot of emphasis was on the running game yet Rivers excelled with the passing game despite this. This is far more impressive than Ben who's set up to succeed with the likes of Santonio Holmes and Charlie Ward, etc.

***

CONTENTION 3: PASSER RATING

As I've already mentioned, Phil currently has a higher average passer rating than Ben (96.3 vs. 92.1). In fact, the 2007 season is the only season in which Ben had a higher passer rating since Phil started. In other words, this contention of Pro's is completely in my favor.

***

CONTENTION 4: CON'S ARGUMENTS

4A) Considering Pro wants to put such a high emphasis on passer rating, it's important to note that Phil has the highest career passer rating of all time second only to Steve Young.

4B) Rivers has eleven 4th quarter comebacks, proving how crucial he can be in the clutch (including earning a 1 point win against the Giants with 30 seconds left in 09). In fact Rivers proved to be the comeback kid after being the first in history to win back-to-back games after trailing by 17 or more points. He held the league's highest 4th quarter quarterback rating. In other words, it doesn't have to be a playoff game for a player to step up.

4C) Rivers is known to be incredibly passionate. However, while Ben's reputation has struggled recently, the public isn't the only one losing faith in him. His team did not elect him to be their captain (which is VERY unusual for a QB!) this season, while Rivers was named captain for his fifth consecutive year. The amount of faith one's teammates has in the leadership abilities and qualities of their QB should not go overlooked.

***

-- CONCLUSION THUS FAR --

* Phil averages more TDs per game
* Phil and Ben have the same completion percentage
* Phil averages more yards than Ben
* Phil has a consistently higher QB rating and pass rating than Ben
* Phil is impressive with an inferior team compared to the Steelers
* Phil is the captain of his team
* Phil is set to shatter Dan Marino's record for most yards in a season if he stays on current pace

http://sports.yahoo.com...

http://sports.yahoo.com...

http://www.pro-football-reference.com...

http://sports.yahoo.com...
Debate Round No. 2
Ls4baseball

Pro

First I would like to apologize for assuming you were a guy at the beginning of the debate...... but it would appear I am not the only one who is presumptuous in this debate so far, as i will show soon enough.

I am going to continue this debate first by attempting to refute most, if not all of con's contentions, and then proceed to restate the contentions I feel con either did not refute or did not refute substantially.

The first of con's presumptions is the suggestion that playoff and superbowl success has no bearing on how good a QB is. we only have to look at quarterbacks such as Dan Fouts, Fran Tarkenton, Jim Kelly, Dan Marino, and Warren Moon to see how harshly great quarterbacks(as all of the previous mentioned are) can be judged from not getting a ring. QB is probably the only position in football that a player gets judged based on winning, and rightfully so, quarterbacks are the generals of the field and expected to win as such.

The next presumption of con would be of the steelers having a superior team. This is a huge assumption for a few reasons.

1. It uses circular reasoning to justify its cause, con is essentially saying the steelers won in the playoffs and won superbowls because they were a great team, but at the same time the steelers were considered a great team because they could win in the playoffs and won superbowls.

2. Im going to use some of con's data to support my next claim that the steelers were not an inherently better team then he chargers.

2006 - 07

Chargers: 14-2
Steelers: 8-8

2007 - 08

Chargers: 11-5
Steelers: 10-6

2008 - 09

Chargers: 8-8
Steelers: 12-4

2009 - 10

Chargers: 13-3
Steelers: 9-7

I would like to focus most specifically on the years 2006 and 2009, what do both of these years have in common? Well two things.
A. The chargers finished the season with a vastly superior record(a common method for showing if a team is good I proclaim)
B. The steelers won the in the playoffs and won the superbowl.

I believe this clearly shows the chargers have had at the very least comparable(if not arguably better) teams then the steelers, but were just not able to perform in the post season, which i believe is a correlation to Rivers inability to perform at a high level in the playoffs.

3. the presumption of better players for the steelers than the Chargers. Con already makes my first argument for this being a huge assuption on her part, and that is with a one L.T. Anyone who knows football knows how important a solid running game is for a quarterback(especially a young one) also consider L.T. was known for having amazing hands out of the backfield, so to downplay having one of the greatest(arguably the greatest) running backs of all time is quite a stretch, not to mention i think you might be forgetting a certain antonio gates AKA one of the greatest pass catching Tight Ends of all time. Furthermore there is also the likes of Vincent Jackson, and Keenan McCardell and on defense there was all pro linebacker Shawne Merriman(still in his prime when Rivers started playing) I believe have shown considerable example of at the very least how the chargers had a comparable(if not better) team then the steelers.

Id not like to focus on Con's contention 1A through 1E as a whole and show why all of this statistical data is extremely presumptuous.

The Main issue I have with Con's notion of River's being a better quarterback based on 1A-1E is that it all assumes a consistent rate of play for a player who was apparently not ready to start. The amount of knowledge and preparation Rivers gained while sitting on the bench learning from the great Drew Brees is not only invaluable but more significantly immeasurable. It is impossible to say how River's would have performed as a rookie or during any of the years after that he did not have the starting job, but if history shows us anything it shows us rookie QB's tend to struggle in the NFL. Therefore because Big Ben was thrusted into the NFL as a rookie and Rivers was not, Ben R. had to go through he struggles Rivers got to handle in practice. Because of this I believe it is reasonable to assume that a younger more inexperienced Philip Rivers starting would have produced a lower passing TDs per game, completion percentage, and Yards Per Game, while also presumably leave him with a higher INT rate then he has as well(as nearly every QB ever progresses and gets better a few years in the NFL then there first few years).

On a side note I find 1E to be at best a relatively irrelevant statistic due to, as you stated Ben's legal issues keeping him on the sideline. Not only did he not get a sufficient chance to get into a groove yet, not to mention i find it a stretch to try to throw 3 regular season games into a category itself when looking at a 6 year career.

Contention 2 brings the same issues as contention 1 in that it assumes the steelers as a superior team, and also uses circular reasoning to support the steelers having better coaches because of them winning SB's, vs, them winning SB's because they have better coaches. Finally contention 2 leaves out Big Ben's season's when Rivers was on the bench which I find unfair. Once again Con attempts to assume Rivers would play up to his standards his rookie year and second year in the NFL, while it is possible to be a winning QB as a rookie(see Big Ben or Mark sanchez rookie wins) it is far more likely he has significantly less wins and more losses as a starter his rookie year and second year in the league as most QB's dont (see Peyton Manning's 3-13 rookie season)

Side note: Charlie ward?

Contention 3 does not factor in playoffs, or Rivers first two years on the bench.

I concede to 4A but would like to note Cons still does not acknowledge the Playoffs and also that Ben is 8th on that list with a mere 4 points separating them.

I also Concede to 4B especially "it doesnt have to be a playoff game for a player to step up" (as clearly this is true especially for players that cant step it up in the playoffs lol) But would like to add Big Ben has 17 4th quarter comebacks to Rivers 11, as well as 21 game winning drives compared to Rivers 14.

4C I see little relevance in so i dont plan on refuting it besides saying not only is leadership(usually shown in the playoffs) immeasurable and intangable but its hardly relevant.

In conclusion thus far i propose

1. Con uses presumptions that are more reasonable to assume would have negative effects a opposed to the improbable conclusion she has come up with of a positive effect on Rivers in regards to his playing time as a rookie and 2nd year player.

2. Con shows Philip Rivers regular season stats and winning record as reason for him being great, but blames the coaches and other players for there lack of success in the playoffs, this shows inconsistencies as essentially she is saying, in the regular season he puts up great stats because he is a great quarterback, but in the playoffs he puts up worse stats and doesnt win because he has a bad or insufficient team. This concept does not stand up to reason as he has he same team and coaches in the regular season as he does in the playoffs, yet his stats and winning percentage drop.

3. Con presumes the steelers as a better team then the chargers with better players without a basis for that, and I have presented a basis to show that at the very least they are comparable in team ability and players.

4. con claims Phil have a consistently higher QB rating and passer rating but these are the same thing.

5. Con assumes consistency in Rivers pace for yards this year to the extent of shattering Marino's record for passing yards in a season that in now way can be adequately justified.

6. Con has not contested Ben R. being a better playoff QB or his 2 Superbowl victories.

http://www.pro-football-reference.com...
will add more
Danielle

Con

Thanks, Pro.

The first thing my opponent mentions is that a QB is indeed judged by whether or not they achieve Superbowl success. For instance, he mentioned the likes of Dan Marino and Jim Kelly being harshly criticized for never winning a ring. However, all this does is prove my point: that just because a QB does not win a championship or achieve a lot of success in the playoffs does not necessarily indicate his ability as a player. Nobody denies Marino's skill despite not winning a championship.

Similarly, LeBron James is often cited as the best basketball player in the NBA, though he's never gone to the championship and has extremely limited experience in the playoffs barely making it there in his tenure as a professional. On the other hand, Robert Horry has 7 rings while LeBron has 0. Does that make Horry the better player? Absolutely not. I expanded on this further in describing what would happen to the win percentage of the Cleveland Browns if Peyton Manning were traded to their team today. Would they go on to win the Superbowl? They probably wouldn't even make the playoffs. The point here is that while it undoubtedly is to Ben's credit that he's achieved post-season success, it's hardly a strong contention in favor of him being the superior QB -- especially when you crunch the numbers and see no significant advantage in comparison to Rivers.

Next, Pro challenges the idea that the Steelers are/were a better team in recent years than the Chargers. On paper, the Steelers should have been the superior team. For instance, in addition to Big Ben, there are several household names - particularly on the Wide Receiving end with them having Hines Ward, Santonio Holmes (in recent past seasons) and Limas Sweed. No other team in the NFL could boast having two superbowl MVPs at the Wide Receiver position. In other words, Ben was set up to succeed. Antonio Gates is the only big name Charger receiver.

As I explained in the last round, the Chargers hosting LaDainian Tomlinson essentially made their team focused on being dominant on the ground. However despite Tomlinson's tremendous success, Rivers became increasingly known for his brilliant passing game and racking up big numbers and breaking several Charger records, including for most TD passes in a season (34). The fact that Rivers has put up the numbers he did while Tomlinson consistently racked up the most rushing yards year after year is a testament to Rivers' ability to optimize both the running and passing game.

Yes, the Steelers are a great organization set up to be successful, which was certainly not the case with the Chargers. Let's consider why Phil Rivers is on the Chargers in the first place. The Chargers were among the worst teams in the NFL, and it's only because the #1 overall draft pick from 2004 Eli Manning demanded to be traded that Rivers was put on the team to begin with! The Steelers have not only one of the most impressive young coaches the NFL has seen, but a spectacular defense and lots of pro-bowl worthy talent.

Pro brings up the fact that in both 06 and 09, the Chargers had the superior record in the regular season but the Steelers went on to win the Playoffs and Superbowl, respectively. This is allegedly proof that Big Ben is better in high pressure situations. First off, Pro is talking about the wrong seasons. The Steelers won the Superbowl after the 2005 regular season, meaning one of the stats he's talking about isn't even applicable considering I only gave stats for 06 - 07 and not 05 - 06. Pro makes the same mistake twice; the Steelers won the Superbowl after the 2008 season meaning they had a winning record (12-4) while the Chargers did not. In other words, you can scrap this contention of Pro's all-together because his analysis was referring to the wrong years, meaning these arguments have no weight.

Next, we move on to the meat and potatoes of the debate: the statistics. Pro essentially tries to diminish and take away from Rivers' achievements because he puts up better numbers than Ben. Fair enough, but let's see if his analysis holds any weight. First, Pro says "It is impossible to say how River's would have performed as a rookie" and then notes "Because of this I believe it is reasonable to assume that a younger more inexperienced Philip Rivers starting would have produced a lower passing TDs per game..." etc. Well, which is it? Either we can make assumptions about how Rivers would have fared in his rookie season or we could not.

Assuming we go with Pro's suggestion that it'd be impossible to know what kind of numbers Rivers would have put up, then all we have to go on are the seasons for which Rivers started: 06 - 10. In that case, Rivers puts up better numbers than Ben, as I've explained, meaning Pro has no real defense. Rivers put up better numbers - period. This is especially due to the fact that Pro insists QBs only improve as they gain NFL experience. Of course Ben Roethlisberger himself proves my opponent wrong; Ben's QB rating was 104 in 2007, and dropped 24 points to 80 in 2008 (!).

I'd also like to completely dismantle Pro's suggestion that statistic 1E is irrelevant, i.e. comparing the stats for each QB this season. He says Ben hasn't had time to "find his groove yet" considering he's only played 4 game thus far; however, Ben was not out of the game due to injury but because of personal conduct issue. He was still able to attend and play in every practice, meaning he is not recovering from injury or other severe absence. Moreover I could easily then make the argument that we should say Ben has had two more YEARS to find his groove compared to Rivers given Ben started two years earlier. This is a bad attempt at discrediting the fact that Rivers is destroying Ben's numbers this season even if you just look at the game averages. There is no reason to discount it.

Next, Pro provides more misinformation in an attempt to distort the facts. For instance he says Ben has 17 fourth quarter comebacks compared to Rivers' 11. I said Rivers had 11 fourth quarter comebacks THAT SEASON ALONE; obviously Pro's number of 17 would be impossible given a 16-game regular season. Nevertheless, none of the points from my first contention have been adequately refuted. Pro never refuted the fact that Rivers averages more TD passes per game in terms of his entire career, or yards per game. Even if we acknowledge the Steelers and Chargers having an equal team in terms of performance, Rivers puts up better numbers. Pro can't deny his consistently higher overall QB rating either.

Pro wrote, "Finally contention 2 leaves out Big Ben's season's when Rivers was on the bench which I find unfair." I have no idea what this is referring to. Ben was completely average during his first two NFL seasons -- what would Pro like to discuss? Ben's 17 TD and 11 INT rookie season? Rivers put up way better numbers than that in his first real season (22 TDs, 9 INTs) and again it makes no sense to presume he would have done a lot worse just because Peyton Manning did. At that point he had little to no NFL experience just as Ben didn't. Playing in practice doesn't count, and if it does, then Pro has no business telling us to consider Ben's few game absence from the beginning of this season since he got to play in practice. There is a lack of consistency in these arguments.

While Pro mentions that Ben is only slightly behind Rivers in QB rating (he's at number 8 while Rivers is at number 2), he doesn't mention that Rivers is only slightly behind Ben in terms of NFL game win percentage -- Ben is 2nd, and Rivers is 4th. In other words, Rivers is closer to Ben in his achievements than the other way around.

I'm out of characters for now, but will wrap up my response to Pro's conclusion in the final round.

http://en.wikipedia.org...

http://wiki.answers.com...
Debate Round No. 3
Ls4baseball

Pro

Thank you,

I would first like to state at no point did I say you cant be a good, or even great quarterback without a Superbowl(in fact i specifically said "how harshly great quarterbacks can be judged from not getting a ring) only that it is in fact a major scrutiny on there careers. Comparing Lebron James to Robert Horry is ridiculous and in no was a similar situation, Lebron's stats trump Horry without question regular season and playoffs, im not going to get into how retarded that comparison is because if the voters cant acknowledge the fallacy of that im not going to convince them anyways. The point is Con wants to take away the importance of playoff success and SB victories in the position that is most closely associated with winning, no one is saying it is the only part of consideration, only that it is clearly a substantial one for the quarterback position.

Now here is where I get a little nervous as to how much Con actually knows about football(besides earlier calling Hines Ward, Charlie Ward) Con puts Limas Sweed our waste of a first round pick in the category of household names and uses him to point out the steelers superiority. lets just take a look at Sweed really briefly. In 3 years Limas has garnered a grand total of 7 receptions for 69 yards, with 1 fumble, not exactly looking like a HOF or even probowl is in this guys immediate future. As I said most of the common belief that the steelers are a superior team is based off of them winning in the playoffs and SB, which leads to circular reasoning as they win because there great and there great because they win. As I stated before LT arguably the greatest RB of all time was an excellent pass catcher out of the backfield and def opened up options for Rivers downfield by bringing in the defense, not to mention him having one of the most gifted receiving TE ever to play the game.

As to the Superbowl years of the steelers, I did not claim the wrong years of them winning the superbowl(as it was in 2006 and 2009) but the information was misleading as it did come in the 2005 season and 2008 season, but regardless it was con who attested to the Chargers winning more during the regular seasons during Rivers years in the league, if they were able to win so much during he regular season and be so dominate why is it unfair to say they should have been capable of winning the playoffs? Con can not have it both ways, if they are an elite team because they were so great during the regular season(which is what I believe) then they clearly underachieved in the playoffs by not being able to even make it to a superbowl, also I contend the statement "The Steelers won the Superbowl after the 2005 regular season, meaning one of the stats he's talking about isn't even applicable considering I only gave stats for 06 - 07 and not 05 - 06" is preposterous, we cant consider the superbowl as part of his legacy and achievements because..... Rivers was still sitting on the bench? maybe he should have been good enough to win the starting job then. The fact still remains the same, Chargers have been a great team in the regular season and choke in the playoffs, that is the only basis there is for the steelers being a better team.

I believe I was taken grossly out of context in con's next statement although maybe I did not clarify correctly what I was trying to say. Basically It is impossible to determine how River's would have performed as a rookie because he didnt really play his first 2 seasons, but I believe it is more then reasonable to assume that he would have not done as good as he did after his 2 years on the bench as he had time to learn the system and get a feel for NFL speed, clearly it is possible he would have done as well, but that is highly unlikely an overly presumptuous, it is far more likely he would have done worse because that is how history shows a typical QB progresses.

As i've shown already Rivers even if you decide to give him the averages Con proclaims has a marginal gap of better statistics per game during the regular season with a larger gap during the Postseason and better overall statistics over Ben's career.

Cons distorts my context yet again when showing Ben had a worse 07 season then 08, buy claiming I assume NFL QBs get better every single year they play, as opposed to the more reasonable assumption that QB's typically get better with experience and usually that show's in there statistics, clearly I was in no way claiming QB's stats MUST get better every single year there in the NFL.

Cons "dismantling" of my suggestion was hardly solid, the reason for Ben not playing this year is irrelevant. Also Con is completely mistaken about Ben being allowed to practice with team as he was not even allowed on the steelers facility while under suspension( see http://www.thepittsburghchannel.com...) saying Ben should have in the groove this season because he got to play in the 04 and 05 season is laughable not only are many of the players different then now therefore changing timing plays, it was 5 years ago lol. Finally putting a large amount of emphasis on the beginning of one season when talking about the careers of two players seems irresponsible.

Im not really sure what to say about Cons next statement, it seems pretty clear by the link she provided that Rivers did not have 11 fourth quarter comebacks in one season lol, while that would be absolutely AMAZING its completely inaccurate, so i hold still to my claims of the 4th quarter comebacks. Also I dont have to dispute he scores a few more TDs per game or yards per game, as i said it is a marginal difference, and Ben more then makes up for that with career totals in TDs yards, and even more so with his by far superior playoff stats that you refuse to even want to talk about or consider.

Next I would like to say you cannot compare the rookie season of a QB to the 3rd NFL season of a QB even if it was his first year starting, the information he learned about the system and NFL the two years he sat behind the great Drew Brees is immeasurable, not to mention Ben had arguably one of the best rookie campaigns ever(http://bleacherreport.com...) Peyton Manning was just an example of the tough times rookie QB's tend have there first season, Manning even had a productive rookie season and it did not show in wins, as is the case with most QB's this was simply to show it is more likely Rivers would not have played as well his first two seasons. Once again con says Ben got to practice with team and this is inaccurate therefore no lack of consistency.

like I said I do not have to prove Ben is better in every statistical measure of the game, just that he is overall a better QB with a better career. In conclusion I would like to briefly restate all of the reasons Ben Roethlisberger is a better QB at this point in his career then Philip Rivers.

1. regular season cumulative stats are better
2. regular season per game stats are comparable
3. Playoff stats are more important and better by a large margin
4. More regular season wins
5. more playoff wins
6. better playoff win percentage
7. 2 Superbowls

No matter how you look at it these are the facts, Con will attempt to get you to vote for her by claiming
1. per game stats during the regular season are the most important
2. playoff stats are unimportant
3. Its not fair to count all of Ben's achievements because he has been a starter longer
4. winning in the playoffs are unimportant
5. superbowls are unimportant
6. the Chargers are not good enough to win in the playoffs, but are great in the regular season.

I feel like all of these contentions should leave you to believe Ben is a better QB when looking at all of the stats and facts and take out all of the presumptions that cannot be proven. Thank you con for the debate, and everyone for reading and voting.

http://sports.espn.go.co...
Danielle

Con

Thanks, Pro.

Let's put a rest to the Playoff/Superbowl issue. I said, "While it undoubtedly is to Ben's credit that he's achieved post-season success, it's hardly a strong contention in favor of him being the superior QB" for the exact reason I explained and which Pro agrees -- that not every great athlete wins a championship. Both my opponent and myself acknowledge this reality, yet Pro insists that this should be of utmost consideration, or at least highly important, to the testament that Ben R. is the better QB just because he's won a Superbowl.

In previous rounds, I mentioned that ON PAPER the Steelers looked like the superior team to the Chargers. My reasoning included the fact that in addition to their stellar defense and great new coach, the Steelers boasted two Superbowl MVP Wide Receivers (Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes). Obviously having this caliber of receivers on your team boasts a QB's opportunities, so Ben had an advantage in this regard. This is further demonstrated by these two receivers being rated among the TOP SIX WR'S IN ALL-TIME STEELER HISTORY, with Ward being ranked #1 [1].

Yes, Antonio Gates is a great Tight End and Tomlinson made a bunch of catches for Rivers as well. However a receiver-happy RB and decent TE does not compare to multiple MVP Wide Receivers when it comes to comparing who compliments a QB for receiving most favorably. This is because Safetys and Corners for instance have to be concerned with multiple deep threats for the Steelers as opposed to simply the short pass or slant route. Once again, the caliber of these receivers undoubtedly strengthens Ben's opportunities as far as a passing game is concerned. Pro cannot deny this. By the way - Steelers TE Heath Miller is not too shabby! [2]

[ Note: To clarify, when I mentioned Sweed, I was noting that he was supposed to be a great Steeler addition though being plagued with injuries and other problems has kept him off the field. That said, just because I accidentally called Hines Ward Charlie Ward one time does not mean my opponent should talk down to me and insult me over a typo. This is bad conduct, evidenced by his increasingly condescending tone throughout the last round. ]

Up next - Pro says it's nonsensical to suppose the Chargers had an inferior team given their success. However my point was that Ben had a strong support system: great coaches, amazing receivers, etc. and yet he could not win as many games as Rivers did with a less than impressive supporting cast. Yes, Gates and Tomlinson (a RB) were phenomenal players, but considering Ben's opportunities and other advantages he should have at LEAST put up better numbers than Rivers, if not won as many games. However he didn't win as many games, and his numbers did not excel past Rivers. They have the exact same completion rating, and Rivers has the higher TD percentage, and gains better yardage both in terms of averages and overall yards earned.

Once again, the reason I'm saying to take Playoff statistics with a grain of salt is because the Steelers have had far more experience, so there's not much for the Chargers to compare to. Nobody's taking away from Ben's accomplishments, however just because he got to the Playoffs already gives him a (slight) edge over Rivers to begin with. Of course since Rivers didn't make the Playoffs much, he obviously didn't make the Superbowl thus there's no stats to compare in this regard. Bragging about Ben's Superbowl numbers when there aren't Rivers Superbowl numbers is a futile attempt at distinguishing superiority under the same kind of pressure situation. Plus, the Chargers came so close to reaching the championship several times, such as when they lost in the divisional round of the playoffs several seasons in a row - like to the Pats, and then the Jets by just 3 points, respectively, last season.

Again, I'm not saying we should discount Ben's post-season numbers, but since Rivers has so few, there's not much to compare meaning this is hardly a good assessment of pairing the match-up between the two QBs. Since we've all already agreed that phenomenal players often don't make the post-season (see: LeBron James), then it means we can't use this against Rivers to a large degree; we can make a note of it, but at the end of the day only compare the stats from when both players have had the chance to play at the same time for the same amount of time (the regular season). In doing so, we see that Rivers consistently put up better numbers than Ben.

Next, indeed Pro's error in confusing the Superbowl seasons dismantles his point. His entire point was that the Chargers did better in the regular season during those years, yet it was the Steelers who went on to win the Superbowl despite having a worse regular season record. However, the Steelers did NOT have a worse regular season record during the years they went on to win the Superbowl! Therefore, this point is entirely moot.

Moving on, Pro agrees that it's "impossible" to know how Rivers would have fared had he started at QB his first 2 seasons in the NFL. As such, he acknowledges that it's pointless to guess, so all we have to go on is evaluate the years that Rivers DID start. Ben still has an advantage in this regard, because if we start comparing from that year (2006 season), Ben already had 2 entire seasons under his belt as the starting QB in the NFL whereas Rivers did not. Nevertheless, Rivers had a 92 rating that year compared to Ben's 75! Ben had 18 TDs and 23 INTs, while Rivers had 22 TDs and only 9 INTs! Ladies and gentlemen, the numbers speak for themselves. Not only were Rivers' rookie season numbers better than Ben's, but they were far better that year than Ben's, who by that time was a veteran.

[ Note: Indeed Rivers only had 11 4th quarter career comebacks; Big Ben has 17, but remember he's played in 14 more games. ]

***

-- REBUTTAL --

Pro says Ben's:

1. regular season cumulative stats are better --> How so?! In R2 I provided statistics with CITATIONS proving Rivers averages more TD passes per game, more yards per game, and more yards in general than Ben! What stats of Ben's are better, exactly?

2. regular season per game stats are comparable --> Uh, not really. See above.

3. Playoff stats are more important and better by a large margin --> I've explained why they're not much more important. Once again, it takes an entire TEAM to succeed in the Playoffs; Ben can't be given all the credit.

4. More regular season wins --> No, actually the Chargers have had a better winning record every single year that Rivers has started in comparison to the Steelers except for 2008-2009, the Steelers' championship season (despite the fact that Pro indicated otherwise).

5. more playoff wins --> See above; doesn't count for much.

6. better playoff win percentage --> Lol, you're really holding on to this aren't you?

7. 2 Superbowls --> Haha, I guess so.

***

-- CONCLUSION --

Phil Rivers has put up numbers comparable and/or BETTER than Ben despite Ben having so many MVP receivers on his team; two extra years of NFL experience; a better staff; etc. Rivers has an overall better QB rating, has won more regular season games, gained more yards, averages more yards, etc. The ONLY thing Pro has demonstrated is that Ben has more Playoff and Superbowl wins... big deal. That can't be held against Rivers for all aforementioned reasons. In comparing the two's performance these past 4 years that Rivers has started, Rivers out-does Ben consistently in every area except for post-season wins, which is only one (small) of many considerable factors. We can assume that if Rivers were on the Steelers, his numbers would excel far past Ben's. Also, extend my arguments regarding Ben losing the title of captain, and other forfeited and/or dropped arguments by my opponent.

Thank you.

[1] http://tinyurl.com...
[2] http://tinyurl.com...
Debate Round No. 4
19 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
Touche.
Posted by Ls4baseball 6 years ago
Ls4baseball
Hey hows Rivers doing?
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
Holy Rivers again ;)
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
So the numbers are in. Ben threw 17/27 (63%) for just 163 yards. One touchdown. His rating is at 96.8 compared to Rivers at 102.9. But whew Rivers @ Texans was ridiculous :)
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
By the way... today Phil Rivers threw FOUR touchdown passes (without Gates and Floyd!!!) and completed nearly 3/4 of his passes. We'll see how Ben does tomorrow :)
Posted by bluesteel 6 years ago
bluesteel
Pro should have calculated per game post-season averages for the two quarterbacks. The one claim that pro could have won on - that Rivers chokes post-season - was unsubstantiated by the numbers, without this calculation. Con had already pointed out that aggregates are not good measures considering that Roethlisberger has played more games than River (in both regular and post-season).
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
My saying Rivers would have done better than Ben on the Steelers has absolutely nothing to do with the Steelers being the better overall team (though I think they are) and everything to do with the fact that Rivers would have had more receiver threats. You're being hypocritical in saying Ward is "past his prime" but then bragging about A. Gates, when Gates has been injured since 08 meaning Rivers only had 2 solid years to play with him as well. Also, are you really saying the Steelers are a running team more than the Chargers were?! Tomlinson led the league in rushing yards in 06 and 07. In 08 Tomlinson had 1,110 yards compared to Parker's 791. Last year was the only year the Steelers out-ran the Chargers and that's because Tomlinson had his problems (he didn't even play in all 16 games) but nice try. Regardless, my whole debate analysis explained exactly why Rivers having so many MVP receivers would have opened up his passing game a lot more than relying on one star Tight End; there would be more deep threats instead of slant routes (i.e. more yards to be gained). Plus, once again Rivers only had 2 real years to play with Gates. Also, if your assumption that Rivers had "more opportunities" were true then you would see a huge disparity in numbers between their attempted and completed passes -- which is simply not accurate.
Posted by Ls4baseball 6 years ago
Ls4baseball
I was saying one of the best TE ever to play. But to say rivers would have done better as a steeler is SOOOO presumptuous, this is based on your opinion that the steelers have a better team which is terribly presumptuous as well, Rivers has clearly had a better receiving TE, and better RB (receiving and rushing wise), I would give the nod to the steelers on Defense and say the WRs are arguable, Hinds ward is great but has been past his prime for most of his years with Ben, Holmes was prob his best receiver, and that w only a 3 year span as an above average receiver with stats very comparable to Vincent Jackson(some would argue he is better). Plus the steelers are a running team much more then the chargers who are known to air it out alot more, giving Rivers more opportunities, but even if we were to assume that Rivers would have done better then ben on the steelers(quite an assumption IMO), there is certainly no reason to believe he would have done as good in the playoffs or won as many superbowls.
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
One of the best to ever play the game? I mean, Tight Ends, sure, but not necessarily receivers. Several other receivers have put up numbers equal to his in the same time frame: Moss, T. Owens, Harrisson...

Now, of course Gates is awesome, but don't forget he's been injured the past few seasons as well which have also affected his numbers significantly (specifically from the 08 season onward). I'm convinced, and this debate hasn't shown otherwise, that had Rivers been on the Steelers these past few years he would have put up numbers far higher than Ben's, whereas now his numbers are just slightly higher in pretty much every area despite Ben having been on a team with multiple star receivers. The only thing Ben has is playoff stats superiority, but that's because he's been in more playoff games and Rivers has a puny few games to compare it to. That doesn't signify overall consistency. In short, if Rivers would have put up way higher numbers than Ben - and we see no reason to assume not - he has the better rating and numbers in his favor. Even if we don't pretend Rivers would have done better on the Steelers, he's already done better as a Charger. That's my $0.02 anyway.
Posted by Ls4baseball 6 years ago
Ls4baseball
Ill give you Hinds Ward as the greatest reciever for the steelers, but he is clearly past his prime, santonio holmes is gone, both won SB MVP's not reg. season, which means they had a good game, there are some crappy SB MVP's out there. and Antonio gates isnt a decent receiving TE, hes one of the best ever to play the game.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by BlackVoid 6 years ago
BlackVoid
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Vote Placed by bluesteel 6 years ago
bluesteel
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Vote Placed by m93samman 6 years ago
m93samman
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