Is Kurt Warner a Hall-of-Famer?
Posted by Dan Brown on November 8th, 2008 at 4:01 pm | Categorized as Uncategorized
On Monday night, the ***** will be facing the active leader in passer rating, a three-time Pro Bowler and a two-time MVP.
Are they also facing a future Hall-of-Famer?
Kurt Warner, the former grocery clerk, is getting close enough to see Cantons door. The more I look at his career accomplishments, the more I think hes on his way in.
As with any Hall-of-Fame candidate, there are two tests:
1. The gut test. Does it even matter what the stats say? (Think Joe Namath, Bart Starr).
2. The statistics test. Do his numbers place him with the elite players of his era? (Think Jim Kelly, Dan Fouts, Fran Tarkenton).
Of course, there are plenty of QBs who can ace either question Montana, Elway and Marino come to mind but some Hall-of-Famers can get by with just one as long as they answer affirmatively enough.
Warner might struggle with No. 1, especially in an era dominated by names like Favre, Manning and Brady.
But No. 2? Warners case is increasingly strong.
Here are a few lists that show the company he keeps.
MULTIPLE NFL MVPS*
Jim Brown (3)
Johnny Unitas (3)
Brett Favre (3)
Joe Montana (2)
Steve Young (2)
Kurt Warner (2)
Peyton Manning (2)
(*AP voting, which started in 1957)
ALL-TIME PASSER RATING
96.8 Steve Young
94.2 Kurt Warner
94.1 Peyton Manning
92.9 Tom Brady
92.3 Joe Montana
MOST CAREER 300-YARD GAMES
63 Dan Marino
55 Brett Favre
51 Dan Fouts
49 Warren Moon
45 Kurt Warner
44 Peyton Manning
MOST CONSECUTIVE SEASONS LEADING LEAGUE IN PASSING YARDS
5 Sid Luckman
4 Steve Young
3 Kurt Warner, Bart Starr
MOST PASSING YARDS IN A SEASON
5,084 Dan Marino, 1984
4,830 Kurt Warner, 2001
4,806 Tom Brady, 2007
Not bad, right? One of those lists gets better upon closer inspection. Kurt Warner has reached 300 yards 45 times in just 101 games. That means hes done it 44.6 percent of the time.
So lets reorder the list of 300-yard passers based on the rate of games played.
300-YARD GAMES BY PERCENTAGE
44.6 Kurt Warner (45 times in 101 games)
28.2 Dan Fouts (51 times in 181 games)
26.2 Peyton Manning (44 times in 168 games)
26.0 Dan Marino (63 times in 242 games)
23.6 Warren Moon (49 times in 208 games)
20.8 Brett Favre (55 times in 265 games)
Winning, of course, might be the No. 1 qualification for a quarterback to earn enshrinement in the Hall of Fame. Overall, Warner is 53-39 during the regular season as a starter. He is 5-2 in the postseason.
Warner really boosted his case by winning a Super Bowl MVP trophy in 1999.
Of the 16 other quarterbacks to be selected as the Super Bowl MVP, 11 are in the Hall of Fame or will be: Bart Starr, Joe Namath, Len Dawson, Roger Staubach, Terry Bradshaw, Joe Montana, Steve Young, John Elway, Troy Aikman, Peyton Manning and Tom Brady.
Four Super Bowl MVPs did not make it in: Jim Plunkett, Phil Simms, Doug Williams and Mark Rypien.
One is too early to tell: Eli Manning.
Warner, at age 37, is in his 11th NFL season. He might not have many more seasons left to pad his numbers. But, for kicks, I looked up the career numbers for every Hall of Fame quarterback at profootballreference.com.
These are just the basic quarterbacks stat touchdowns, interceptions, yards to get a feel for where Warner stacks up. I listed the passers in reverse order of their year of enshrinement, since its more relevant to see how Warner compares to modern-era players than, say, Otto Graham and Bob Waterfield.
(And how Kurt Warner stacks up)
QUARTERBACK / TDS / INT / YDS
Kurt Warner / 168 / 106 / 26,439
Troy Aikman / 165 / 141 / 32,942
Warren Moon / 291 / 233 / 49,325
Dan Marino / 420 / 252 / 61,361
Steve Young / 232 / 107 / 33,124
John Elway / 300 / 226 / 51,475
Jim Kelly / 237 / 175 / 35,467
Joe Montana / 273 / 139 / 40,551
Dan Fouts / 254 / 242 / 43,040
Bob Griese / 192 / 172 / 25,092
Terry Bradshaw / 212 / 210 / 27,989
Len Dawson / 239 / 183 / 28,711
Fran Tarkenton / 342 / 266 / 47,003
Joe Namath / 173 / 220 / 27,663
Roger Staubach / 153 / 109 / 22,700
Sonny Jurgensen / 255 / 189 / 32,224
George Blanda / 236 / 277 / 26,920
Johnny Unitas / 290 / 253 / 40,239
Y.A. Tittle / 242 / 248 / 33,070
Norm Van Brocklin / 173 / 178 / 23,611
Bobby Layne / 196 / 243 / 26,768
Otto Graham / 174 / 135 / 23,584
Sid Luckman / 137 / 132 / 14,686
Bob Waterfield / 97 / 128 / 11,849
Sammy Baugh / 187 / 203 / 21,886