The Arms Race
The NFL has seen its share of great passers, but who's the best? We crunch the numbers for the top 10 of all time
From the Print Edition:
Francis Ford Coppola, Sept/Oct 03
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#10 Roger Staubach: 6.637
If Starr was the most frequent winner in the 1960s, Roger Staubach (and Terry Bradshaw) picked up that title in the 1970s. Staubach was a Heisman Trophy winner as a junior at the U.S. Naval Academy in 1963, but then spent a mandatory four years on active duty, including service in Vietnam, before returning to football.
Already 29 when he took over as quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys in 1971, Staubach finished his career in 1979 with a 95-35 record. The run included competing in six NFL championship games and winning Super Bowls VI and XII.
Like Starr, Staubach didn't reach 30,000 yards. Still, his 7.67 YPA ranks high. In addition, his ability to bring the Cowboys back from near certain defeats earned him the nickname Captain Comeback. None of those rallies was more famous than the one capped by his "Hail Mary" pass to Drew Pearson with seconds remaining that beat Minnesota in the 1975 playoffs. A teammate, safety Charlie Waters, said that he always believed that "Roger was going to win every time."
Kenneth Shouler, from Harrison, New York, is managing editor of the forthcoming Total Basketball: The Ultimate Basketball Encyclopedia. Steven Shouler provided database research for this article.
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