The Instigator
crackofdawn
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
JBlake
Con (against)
Winning
36 Points

Best NFL Quarterback is Brett Favre

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 6 votes the winner is...
JBlake
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/26/2008 Category: Sports
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,467 times Debate No: 6054
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (16)
Votes (6)

 

crackofdawn

Pro

This debate is over whether or not Brett Favre is the best NFL quarterback ever since the merger of the AFL and NFL. To prove me wrong he has to find a quarterback that he thinks is the best quarterback of all-time and prove to me why.

I will let my opponent start this argument and rebuttal his arguments as I see fit.

I thank my opponent in advance for accepting this challenge and look forward to an interesting debate.
JBlake

Con

I will mention two quarterbacks who deserve the title "best NFL quarterback ever since the merger of the AFL and NFL."

1. Dan Marino

Dan Marino is the current holder of 20 NFL records.
In 242 regular season games he:
Completed 4,967 of 8,358 passing attempts. (59.4%)
Threw for 61,361 yards. (253.56 per game)
420 passing touchdowns. (1.74 per game)
252 interceptions. (1.04 per game)
9 Pro Bowl appearances.
0 championships
86.38 passer rating
(Source: http://www.associatedcontent.com...)

2. Joe Montana

In 192 regular season games:
Completed 3,409 of 5,391 passes. (63.2%)
Threw for 40,551 yards. (211.20 per game)
273 touchdowns. (1.42 per game)
139 interceptions. (0.72 per game)
8 Pro Bowls.
4 championships
92.3 passer rating

Compare these stats to those of Brett Favre:

In 268 games he:
Completed 5,622 of 9,105 passes. (61.7%)
Threw for 64,116 yards (239.24 per game)
462 touchdowns (1.72 per game)
301 interceptions (1.12 per game)
9 pro bowl appearances
1 championship
86.1 passer rating.

(Passer ratings calculated at: http://brucey.net...)
(For an explanation on how they are calculated: http://en.wikipedia.org...)

Analysing the stats listed above we see that while Favre has a higher completion percentage, he is significantly behind Marino in passing yards per game. He also trails Marino in passing touchdowns per game, and throws more interceptions per game. Perhaps most importantly, we see his passer rating is behind Marino's as well.

Montana is also a better quarterback than Brett Favre, as seen by his much higher passer rating, and much higher number of championships.

I thank my opponent for this interesting topic, and await his second round rebuttal.
Debate Round No. 1
crackofdawn

Pro

Thank you for a challenging debate and I look forward to it. I apologizely profusely for being so late and making you wait so long for my rebuttal.

You mention some of Favre's records, but I thought I'd add a couple to your list (these are from the end of the 2008 season):

61,655 passing yards (1st all-time)
442 TD passes (1st all-time)
5,377 completions (1st all-time)
8,758 attempts (1st all-time)
253 straight starts in a row (1st all-time for QB's and second overall)
http://www.nfl.com...

3 seasons leading league in attempts (3rd all-time)
16 seasons of 300 yards or more of passing (1st all-time)
55 300 yards or more passing games (2nd all-time)
Longest pass completion (tied for first all-time at 99 yards)
4 seasons leading league for most touchdown passes (tied for 1st all-time)
3 consecutive seasons leading league in touchdown passes (tied for 1st all-time)
19 games of 4 or more touchdowns (2nd all-time)
4 games of four or more touchdowns in a season (tied for 2nd all-time)
36 consecutive games with TD passes (2nd all-time)
3 mvp's
(http://www.nfl.com...)

40 comebacks (2nd all-time)
(http://www.620wtmj.com...)

Now everything my opponent and I have posted are just facts and figures. Brett Favre is worse in some areas than them and better in others. So the question you have to use other means of comparison to decide who is the better quarterback. To prove that Brett Favre is not the best quarterback you need to prove that he had more

1) Team Support (a better team surrounding him than Marino and/or Montana)

2) Less impact (as in if he was replaced with an average quarterback the effect would be less than with Marino or Favre)

3) Attitude (way he played the game and the reasons he did)

On a side note the stats I posted above are out of date for the simple reason that FAVRE IS STILL PLAYING! His stats will only get better than they are now.

I look forward to your response and bid you good luck.
JBlake

Con

I would like to begin by pointing out that my opponent is attempting to shift the burden of proof onto me. It is he who is making the claim that Brett Favre is the best quarterback since the AFL/NFL merger, and now he is attempting to shift the debate away from the objective measures we have both provided, and is hoping the reader will not notice.

The paramaters he is attempting to add are absurd, especially since it was not I who made the claim that anyone was the greatest quarterback. With that said, I will continue with my analysis of the statistics that suggest that there are better all-time quarterbacks (since the merger), or that the available information is insufficient to to declare Favre the greatest.

In the first set of statistics my opponent has provided a few records now held by Brett Favre. While it is commendable that Favre holds these records, the previous statistics show that Dan Marino was actually more efficient and had a greater effect per game in all areas my opponent cited. Let us take a look:

Passing Yards - While Favre holds the record, if we look at yards per game we see that Marino threw for 14.3 more yards per game.
Touchdown Passes - Marino threw for slightly more touchdowns per game (1.74 for Marino versus 1.72 for Favre).
Completions - Again, Favre hold the record, but Marino was more effective per completion. Marino averaged a gain of 12.4 yards per completion, Favre averaged 11.4.
Attempts - Yes, Favre holds the record for most attempts. But is this a valuable record, especially when we are debating effectiveness? Completions and yardage gain are better measures of productivity.
Starts in a row - This is also not a good measure of a quarterback's productivity.

Here is an analysis of each record listed in the second set:
First, this list is notable for its absence of one of the more significant statistics - Passer Rating. As mentioned before, the Passer rating measures overall productivity. Brett Favre is conspicuously missing from this list. According to Passer Rating, Steve Young is the greatest quarterback, with an asounding career rating of 96.8. Of course, while Favre is missing from the top three lists in this category, Dan Marino is there.

He cites that Favre is 2nd in most games with 300 or more yards; that Favre is tied for most consecutive seasons leading the league in touchdowns; that he is 2nd in most games with 4 or more touchdowns; and that he is tied for 2nd in most games in a season of 4 or more touchdowns. Guess who was ranked number 1 in all of those areas - Dan Marino.

Finally, I would like to reader to note that nearly all of the records held by Favre were previously held by Marino. Marino broke nearly all of those records in fewer games played. It took Favre more seasons and more games to surpass Marino in yardage, completions, touchdowns, and attempts. This further illustrates my point that Dan Marino was more productive, more efficient, and thus greater than Brett Favre.

I would like to thank my opponent for offering this opportunity to debate this topic, and I am looking forward to the next round of debate.
Debate Round No. 2
crackofdawn

Pro

I was running out of time last time (as I am now) so I just wanted to point out some key factors of deciding who is the better quarterback. I wasn't trying to put the burden on my opponent.

<>

By that logic you automatically negate Joe Montana from the debate. Also those were a choice few on a long list of Favre being first in records.

<>

Still negating Joe Montana. Marino played 17 seasons (http://www.coldhardfootballfacts.com...) and has been the starter since his rookie season. Favre on the other hand also played 17 seasons (discluding the current season where his stats have not been added) and only started 15 full seasons ( one was 13 games and the other year he never started) (http://www.nfl.com...).

1)
Brett Favre historically has not had as good as wide receivers as Joe Montana or Dan Marino. Brett Favre had the amazing Sterling Sharpe but that only lasted a few years before Sterling's unfortunate neck injury. Joe Montana not only had the great Jerry Rice, Roger Craig, and Dwight Clark (http://www.nfl.com...=). Dan Marino also had an array of good recievers with Mark Clayton, Nat Moore, and Tony Nathan (http://www.nfl.com...=). By the end of the '07 season Favre had been sacked 424 times. Joe Montana was sacked 353 times and Marino was sacked 271 times (http://www.profootballresearchers.org...). This means that in general these other two quarterbacks had much better protection. Brett Favre has also never had the stellar running back like Roger Craig for Montana. Brett Favre's defense also has never compared to the defense for Marion or Montana.

2)This goes to the whole team support. Joe Montana and Dan Marion had a better team around them unlike
Brett Favre who essentially made the team for many years.

3) Joe Montana was notorious for injuries and Dan Marino doesn't have the record for most consecutive starts. Brett Favre has played with broken thumbs, concussions, sprained ankles, shoulders, etc. This level of tough mentality is not something you see in the everyday player. He put his team above all else and that makes him a true football player.

Vote for me and my argument as Brett Favre being the best quarterback ever as even though his stats are the best he did that with less help and more determination than anyone else I have ever watched play the game.
JBlake

Con

My young opponent continues in his claim that Brett Favre isthe greatest quarterback of all time. I will briefly rebut all of his claims.

Claims:
1. Favre only started in 15 seasons, Marino started 17. Therefore Favre took less time to break the records.
2. Favre has historically had a less talented team than Marino or Montana.
3. He lists a number of receivers who have played with Marino and Montana, and claims there are fewer well known, star receivers that have worked with Favre.
4. Favre has been sacked more times than both Montana and Marino.
5. Favre has a record of playing through injuries.

Rebuttals:
1. It would be much more helpful to look at number of games played, since that is where we find productivity. Marino started more seasons, the fact remains that it took Favre more games to break the records than it took Marino. This is provided in the statistics listed in round one.
Marino has played in 242 regular season games. Favre has played in 268. Favre surpassed Marino in touchdowns after 4 games in the 2007 NFL season. Therefore, Favre reached 421 TDs in 246 games.
Similarly, it took Favre 255 games to surpass Marino in passing yards.

Again, it is productivity that matter when ranking quarterbacks. I have shown that Marino is more productive than Favre.

2. This would be an impossible task to prove. I challenge my young opponent to provide enough evidence to prove this point. It will be necessary for him to provide statistics and bios for the starting lineups for each team and for each year. Since this would be a herculean task, I expect him to concede this point in the final round.

3. Pro contends that a longer list exists for star receivers working with both Marino and Montana, and only one (Sharpe) for Favre. Of course, a quarterback is partially to blame for a lack of notable receivers, since he is responsible for completions. If this were true, and Favre had fewer notable receivers during his tenure as quarterback, then this is one more reason why he is not the greatest quarterback.

The fact is, Pro has not presented us with ample evidence that this is even the case. He cites a few receivers, but does not provide us with any details about them. Additionally, he leaves out some well respected Green Bay receivers like Donald Driver and Antonio Freeman.

4. The fact that Favre has been sacked more times than Marino or Montana is nothing to brag about. Of course plenty of blame goes to the offensive line, but certainly the quarterback has a part in this as well. Besides, a higher number of sacks is not enough evidence in and of itself to prove that Favre's offensive line was worse than the offensive line of the other two. Favre may have just been slower with getting rid of the ball. The evidence provided is inconclusive.

5. Finally, Pro contends that because Favre has a history of playing through injuries that he was tougher, and more of a team player than the other two. However, another interpretation of this is that he is more reckless than the other two. Had he been further injured when he was trying to be a hero, his team would have suffered more by his absence.

CONCLUSION
My opponent bases his case on some very flimsy evidence. He contends that since Favre plays through injuries, and that he allegedly has played with worse teams, that he is somehow a better quarterback than Marino and Montana. Since he does not provide any evidence for the second premise (playing with worse teams), we must erase that from his argument. He is left only with Favre playing through injuries. This is not sufficient evidence to declare Favre the greatest player of all time.

Let's take a look at how this debate has progressed so far. In round 1 we analyzed the statistics. The statistics showed that Dan Marino was a much more productive quarterback than Brett Favre. Then, in round 2 we looked at the record books. We found that Pro touted Favre as ranking 2nd in a number of records. Unfortunately, Marino ranked first in them. We also found that it had taken Favre more games and more playing time to surpass Marino in the records that he did hold. Finally, in the most recent exchange, Pro dropped these points. Aparently he has conceded that Marino was more productive since he failed to address my conclusion in his latest response.

Good luck on your final round.
Debate Round No. 3
crackofdawn

Pro

I thank my opponent for another well-thought response.

So I see that I have elimintated Joe Montana from this debate as my opponent has not mentioned him in any of his counterarguments.

<< It would be much more helpful to look at number of games played, since that is where we find productivity. Marino started more seasons, the fact remains that it took Favre more games to break the records than it took Marino. This is provided in the statistics listed in round one.
Marino has played in 242 regular season games. Favre has played in 268. Favre surpassed Marino in touchdowns after 4 games in the 2007 NFL season. Therefore, Favre reached 421 TDs in 246 games.
Similarly, it took Favre 255 games to surpass Marino in passing yards.>>

This is all true but it's a matter of opinion whether the person who does better on average is better than the person who has done the best overall. Should a person who plays 10 games and ends up with an average of 200 yards a game better than someone who plays 100 games and has an average of 150 yards a game? It's up to the reader to decide out of opinion what stats mean more.

<>

That depends on how you define football productivity. You can't base all productivity off of stats. Their just a base to go off of.

<>

I concede that it is difficult to prove. However, anyone can go to http://www.nfl.com... and look at stats from previous years for certain people on certain teams.

<>

Yes a quarterback does have a large affect on his wide receivers. However this point goes both ways. Perhaps Favre made some average wide recievers better, and bad wide recievers average.

<< He cites a few receivers, but does not provide us with any details about them. Additionally, he leaves out some well respected Green Bay receivers like Donald Driver and Antonio Freeman.>>

If you want details go to http://www.nfl.com.... Antonioe Freeman only lasted a couple of years before he got his big contract and started to go south. Donald Driver's stats are only as good as they are because he was the only reciever Favre had with any talent. With a wider array of wide recievers you can deduce that Driver's looks would have dropped thus making his stats less impressive.

<>

If a quarterback is sacked it is generally a lineman's fault. Dan Marino in fact was known for having "leaden feet". You can't actually PROVE who the better quarterback is since the merger. You can only present the facts and let the reader formulate an opinion. Of course the evidence is inconlcusive, it's up to the reader to draw a conclusion from this.

<< Finally, Pro contends that because Favre has a history of playing through injuries that he was tougher, and more of a team player than the other two. However, another interpretation of this is that he is more reckless than the other two. Had he been further injured when he was trying to be a hero, his team would have suffered more by his absence.>>

In Favre's time it has become the coach's job to prevent a player from becoming reckless. Almost all players when you listen to ESPN when interviewed say they want to play or are going to play even with possible season ending injuries. My theory is that Favre was tough enough about the little things and thankfully never got any of the big injuries that would have made it dangerous to play with. Marino had one but that doesn't account for all the one games missed or 2 games missed.

<>

It's flimsy because you can't PROVE either case. It's up to the reader to decide who is right.

<>

No it didn't. You simply stated that wherever Favre is ranked second, Marino is ranked first. Well that train goes both ways (so to speak). Where Favre is ranked first, Marino is ranked second or third or not even ranked.

<>

Look above.

<>
(this post was in round 2)

So? Marino played earlier than Favre so of course he held the records previously.

CONCLUSION:

You can't PROVE that either quarterback was better or the best. I simply believe that it's up to the reader to decide if the better average or the better amount makes the quarterback better. Then you have to look at my non-personal statistical facts like # of sacks, or team around them.

Good luck on your final rebuttal.

Vote Pro.
JBlake

Con

I would like to thank my opponent for posting and participating in this debate. It has been fun, and I find it unfortunate that I must now destroy your argument.

Despite the fact that Pro effectively concedes defeat in his R4, I will still post a conclusion for the benefit of the reader.
Additionally, I will not respond to his minor points, since he admits he cannot prove his case.

-----------

This debate is specifically about Brett Favre. We have been trying to figure out if he is the best quarterback in NFL history. Pro argued his case admirably and should be commended for hanging on to the idea that his idol is the greatest for as long as he did.

However, in the fourth round of debate he now admits:
"I concede that it is difficult to prove."
"You can't actually PROVE who the better quarterback is since the merger. You can only present the facts and let the reader formulate an opinion. Of course the evidence is inconlcusive, it's up to the reader to draw a conclusion from this."
"You can't PROVE that either quarterback was better or the best."

My job, as Con, was to disprove the resolution "Brett Favre is the greatest NFL Quarterback since the merger." This could be done in one of two ways - prove beyond a reasonable doubt that there exists a better quarterback, or prove that this resolution cannot be proven. I only needed to successfully complete one of these tasks, however I did both. In the quotes listed above, my young opponent admits that he cannot prove that Brett Favre is the greatest quarterback. Therefore by default, I win.

-------------------------

CONCLUSION

I have consistently shown that Dan Marino was a more productive quarterback, putting up more yards, completions, touchdowns, fewer interceptions, and fewer sacks per game. Additionally, I have demonstrated that Marino either still holds all records cited by Pro, or reached the records broken by Favre in fewer games than it took Favre. Perhaps most importantly, Marino (as well as a great many other quarterbacks that have played) has a higher passer rating than Brett Favre.

Because I have demonstrated that a quarterback exists that is greater than Brett Favre and
Because my opponent has admitted that he cannot prove his resolution that Brett Favre is the greatest:
I urge you to vote Con.
Debate Round No. 4
16 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
CONDUCT: I awarded this to CON for 3 reasons. 1) PRO (the instigator) didn't utilize his first round and forced his opponent to go first (if you want an explanation on this, I will be glad to provide it). 2) In R2, (as CON pointed out), PRO attempted to shift the burden of proof onto CON by insisting that CON be the one to prove several things in spite of the fact he is the one with the stance which is initiating the claim. 3) PRO changed his advocacy in R4 with his "you can't prove the resolution true/false" stunt.

Spelling/Grammar: Tie. Just about equal to be honest.

Convincing Arguments: CON. I have several reasons, but my main one (the one that makes me vote CON without any hesitation) is the fact that PRO ended up claiming that there is no way to determine whether or not the resolution is true during R3, thus the readers should decide. First, to argue that, you're essentially arguing in favor of CON as suggesting that one cannot determine whether or not Bret Farve is the best, hence the resolution MIGHT be true is a position that CON can uphold as the meaning behind "is" and "might" is contradictory. 2) Even if the above isn't entirely the case, the fact of the matter is that PRO admitted to not being able to uphold his stance (in spite of the fact that it is his job).

I will NOT vote based on what I personally believe, but rather the performance of the two debaters. When one debater admits he/she cannot uphold his/her position, there shall be absolutely no chance of him/her getting my vote.

Reliable sources: This would have been a tie if not for the fact that PRO rendered all of his sources useless by suggesting that none of them reliable prove his stance. Thus, this goes to CON.

Good debate (minus the last round from PRO). Later. :D
Posted by knick-knack 8 years ago
knick-knack
Topic should say "oldest" NFL quarter back is Brett Farve. :P
Posted by JBlake 8 years ago
JBlake
To once again negate my opponent's vote for himself, I will follow suit and vote for myself inthe same category (reliable sources).
Posted by manutdredseal46 8 years ago
manutdredseal46
Fine, JBlake, your wish is granted:

Conduct: I round my votes. Basically, if someone wins 3/4 and ties 1/4, I give them my next vote. Tie but went Pro due to rounding.

Spelling/Grammar: Pro had better (nicer) format and less errors.

Convincing Arguments: I felt that Pro did a better job with his rebuttals, they were more analytical and better thought out. His last argument particularly impressed me.

Sources: Con used sources, Pro used more.
Posted by JBlake 8 years ago
JBlake
Especially since you voted a straight Pro ticket. This I would find to be even less likely than Pro winning at all. Therefore I would like to know why you felt he won in every category so that I may learn from it.
Posted by JBlake 8 years ago
JBlake
Yes, Manutdredseal, please leave a RFD. How else am I to know why you felt he was more convincing by far and learn from it if you do not.
Posted by manutdredseal46 8 years ago
manutdredseal46
If you mean that as in who voted, I did. If you want a RFD you can request one. If you trust me (I hope you do) then be Ok with it. No offense JBlake, but crackofdawn was more convincing by far.
Posted by crackofdawn 8 years ago
crackofdawn
Is someone vote bombing you?
Posted by crackofdawn 8 years ago
crackofdawn
Sry, that was the only one I saw, I wasn't trying to make a big deal about it. I'd take it away but you already cancelled it out so there's no point.
Posted by JBlake 8 years ago
JBlake
Is that a joke? You fault me for a single typo? In an effort to avoid hostilities I will not attempt to compile and recount your grammatical errors.
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 8 years ago
RoyLatham
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Vote Placed by kei1261 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by JBlake 8 years ago
JBlake
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Vote Placed by Labrat228 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by Zero 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by Logical-Master 8 years ago
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