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Steve Young is a Better Quarterback than Joe Montana

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/14/2014 Category: Sports
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 382 times Debate No: 49131
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
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You have to use stats and sources


Measuring a QB has a lot of immeasurables, but, when I thing of rating a QB, I mean by his ability to complete passes when he has to.

Steve Young, had he and Montana had the same amount of years with the same team, Young would have completed more passes, on average.

Since we can't judge whether those passes would have been in clutch circumstances, we have to say that - measurably - Steve Young was the better QB.

Steve Young's passing rate: 96.8
Joe Montana's: 92.3

The job of the QB is to complete passes. The Offense is to score points, the D is to stop the other team.

Games won is a team stat. TD's has to do with the reciever as much as the QB.

The completion percentage is the only thing that gets close to measuring what a QB does, but the QBR is helpful because it combines relative weights of INT's, TD's, Yards, Completions, etc.
Debate Round No. 1


Montana is the only player to have been named Super Bowl MVP three times. Montana had the highest passer rating in the National Football Conference (NFC) five times (1981, 1984, 1985, 1987, and 1989); and, in both 1987 and 1989, Montana had the highest passer rating in the entire NFL, So that proves he's a better quarterback. The 49ers retired his number 16 team jersey. And His Passing Attempts is 5,391 and His Passing Completions is 3,409.


ooberman forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


I guess I won.


Not so fast!

While Montana won 4 Super Bowls, Young also won a Super Bowl, in far fewer starts AND was Super Bowl MVP 100% of the time.

But, the larger point wasn't addressed. While counting Super Bowl rings helps, it makes Terry Bradshaw and Monatana equal in this category, yet, clearly Bradshaw wasn't nearly the QB Montana was.

Also, compare Dilfer (1 SB win) to Marino (0 SB wins). Clearly, Super Bowl wins don't measure the best QB.

After all, it's a team game.

Therefore, I still argue the one thing a QB can control (completion %) is the besst measure of which QB is better.

Also, MVP's of the Super Bowl only measure one game. Eli Manning is not a very good QB, if one looks at his body of work, but he was MVP for the 2 SB's he won.

The argument about SB's falls flat.

Elway lost 4 Super Bowls before he won 2 - does that mean he was a bad QB, then a good one? He was he same player!

Plus, in his frist SB win, Terrell Davis won MVP. Does that mean Elway wasn't that good - until he won MVP the next year?>

It doesn't make any sense to judge a single player for a team stat: wins, or, for one game (Super Bowl).

In finance, for example, the best economist is the one who has consistent return, not one big - lucky - pay day.
If we take any other field, consistency is the key.

There is no doubt Montana was a great QB. The difference between Young, Montana, Brady, etc, is very small.

I think is does a disservice to the great play they have all done by reducing "best" to one game.

Again, I'd like my opponent to undermine my argument that the best way to measure the skill of a player is:

How well they play their position over time, and measure what they can control. (While completions require good catchers (WR's, TE's, RB's), it still requires the QB to recognize who is open - or which player can best catch the ball.

Also, I think we also need to consider audibles (recognizing the defense) and adding the threat of the run (whch Young was excellent at).

Personally, I'm a NE fan and think Brady is GOAT, because of the things he has done with his limited skill set. His decision making (which feeds into completions) is as good as it gets, and he can play in big games (unlike P.Manning)

One last note. P.Manning has won 1 SB and was MVP. Eli won 2 and was MVP twice. No one is going to argue Eli is better than Peyton, but my opponent's logic would require us to consider Eli a better QB than Peyton.

Clearly, there is more to judge a player than by Championship wins and MVP's.

To drive this point home. Was Montana a bad QB before he won a SB? My opponent would have to say "yes", which is clearly inconsistent.
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by ooberman 2 years ago
Sorry, I missed the deadline. BTW, I personally think Joe Montana is the better QB...
Posted by winno67843 2 years ago
I thought we were done cuz you forfeited
Posted by ooberman 2 years ago
This is the most important debate ever. There is no more important debate than this one. The biggest question facing humanity today is how to judge the value of a person's performance in a team sport. Ethics? Politics? Religion? Worthless! This is the only debate worth having, and Pro won this round... if I may be so bold.
2000 years from now, people will return to this argument for guidance on how we should live, raise our children, vote, pick a religion, drive a car, drink a beverage. The entire secret to Dark Energy is revealed in Pro's argument. We can do numerology and discover secrets to the Universe: how to make new universes and live forever. God himself is jealous of Pro's argument. God wishes he could argue so effectively. If so, Jesus would never have had to die. By reading Pro's arguments, you have already started a subtle but inextricable journey to Enlightenment and transcendence.
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