With Brady vs. Manning Part 500 coming up on Sunday, I figured now was a great time to publish my NFL QB rankings. I ranked each quarterback based on this season and I then compared each of them to an old-school Nintendo character. If the millions of Brady and Manning highlights you see this week don’t make you nostalgic, reminiscing about some NES characters will. I published Part 1 of this list dealing with the AFC yesterday. Here are my power rankings for the NFC quarterbacks.
1. Aaron Rodgers = Mega Man. Can kill you in so many different ways. May not be seen as the best ever, but puts up incredible performances every single time. Also, the lack of female counterparts for most of their careers has lead to some interesting rumors.
2. Drew Brees = Little Mac. A tough, little fighter that somehow always finds a way to beat bigger and more talented guys. Brees and Little Mac scrap and hustle their way to wins despite a weird array of weapons. Plus the Little Mac jump punch kinda reminds me of the way Drew pokes his head up to see above the offensive line. Sean Payton is clearly Doc in this comparison, too.
3. Eli Manning = Luigi. The brother of Mario/Peyton (duh), both Luigi and Eli have had their moments in the sun. Eli obviously won two Super Bowls (as well as Super Bowl MVPs), while Luigi was able to jump out of the goddamn building in Mario 2. Mario 2 was weeeeeird, man. And yes I am a Giants fan that loves his big, dumb quarterback. But Eli’s Total QBR this season makes this homer pick defensible.
4. Tony Romo = Don Flamenco. Remember when Tony Romo went to Mexico on his playoff bye week with Jessica Simpson? That’s right out of Don Flamenco’s playbook. A caring guy who can never come through in the big fights/games. I guarantee Romo pulls the old Flamenco “rose in the mouth” trick on all his new girlfriends. Then again, he once had Stems Underwood wrapped around his finger, so who am I to throw shade on him?
5. Russell Wilson = Paperboy. Paperboy and Wilson can throw well on the move and are loved by everyone in the neighborhood for just appearing to be a good guy. But the hype train is bigger than the actual players. We will look back and laugh about how people used to say Wilson was better than Luck (just like some people probably once said Paperboy was better than Contra).
6. Colin Kaepernick = Kirby. Both have the ability to do anything their opponents can do, but sometimes they just seem worthless. It is so weird how they can go from a 5 to a 10 and then back to a 5 in the blink of an eye. In terms of peak abilities, Kirby and Kappy are at the top of the list.
7. Matt Ryan = Ninja Gaiden. A pretty blah character in a very fun game. Seriously, nothing about Matt Ryan is exciting. But he is able to make some big plays on the field. How much of that is Julio Jones, Roddy White, and (once upon a time) Tony Gonzalez? Probably a shitload. Plus the thought of comparing White Bread Matt Ryan to a Japanese ninja was just too much fun to pass up.
8. Cam Newton = Solid Snake. These guys are out there trying to survive and win the game with very little help. And for all the crap Cam got when he came into the league, no one can deny he is one tough dude like Solid Snake. That was weak, but the Panthers bore me (and 95% of America).
9. Matthew Stafford = Michaelangelo. A party lover that is also the product of all the talent around him. Also, April O’Neil = Future Mrs. Stafford. Because April has to be a serious party girl if she hangs out with a bunch of giant mutant turtles in NYC. P.S. Fuuuuuuuck that Hudson River Level from the first Ninja Turtles game. That board was a life ruiner.
10. Nick Foles = Z-Shaped Tetris Block. If you have a good setup, the Z-Shaped Block can work and sometimes even come in handy. However, sooner or later that big Z is going to destroy everything you hold near and dear to your hearts. Eagles fans are sadly nodding their heads right now.
11. Jay Cutler = Billy Lee (Double Dragon). Everything about Cutler screams Billy Lee. The strong arm, the pissy attitude, and the smokeshow chick that loves him. Brandon Marshall is clearly the Jimmy to Cutler’s Billy, despite the recent bickering. But that’s just what the Lee brothers do. Fight and bitch.
12. Carson Palmer = Excitebike Racer. Just an old veteran chugging along and still trying to bring some entertainment. Are either of these guys as good as they were when they first came out? Of course not. But you can still have a little bit of fun watching them play.
13. Teddy Bridgewater = Toad’s House (Mario 3). It is still too early to know what Teddy is going to bring to the NFL. But whenever the Vikings are on TV, I get excited like I did when I would go in to Toad’s House in Mario 3. Maybe you get a mushroom performance out of Teddy, but maybe you get a raccoon leaf. You never really know. But there is a chance that one day Teddy gives a Tanooki suit performance and blows everyone away.
14. Austin Davis = The Tornado From Paperboy. I really don’t know much about Austin Davis, but I do know that he beat that Paperboy bastard known as Russell Wilson recently. By the way, the Tornado is such a diabolical villain in that game. Fuck the tornado.
15. Colt McCoy/Kirk Cousins/Injured Robert Griffin III = Hammer Brothers. The Hammer Brothers in Mario 1 were an absolute pain in the dick. But by Mario 3 they were a cakewalk. That is a fair comparison for the 3 Redskins QBs going from college to the NFL (even though RG3 was admittedly a beast before getting hurt).
16. Mike Glennon = Ostro from Mario 2. A long necked, utterly forgettable part of a terrible franchise (yeah, I hate the living shit out of Mario 2. #barstoolconfessions.).
Who did I get wrong on this list? Who would you have picked? Tweet #NESQB with your responses.