Home / Sports / Barnwell ranks the most efficient QBs to by no means achieve a Tremendous Bowl

Barnwell ranks the most efficient QBs to by no means achieve a Tremendous Bowl

If anyone asks you to call the most efficient quarterback by no means to win a Tremendous Bowl, the solution is apparent. Dan Marino was once one of the most biggest signal-callers in NFL historical past, however after dropping to the 49ers in Tremendous Bowl XIX at age 23, he by no means made it again to the largest degree. The Dolphins could be outscored 60-24 of their two closing convention championship appearances ahead of Marino ultimately retired after the 1999 season.

If I had been to invite you about the most efficient quarterback by no means to make it to a Tremendous Bowl, regardless that, the solution may not be moderately as glaring. A variety of passers have sneaked in for no less than one championship sport, even though guys like Mark Brunell best made it as backups who did not take any snaps all over the sport. The idea was once impressed via Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers, who’s enjoying Thursday evening, and certainly has made it onto my record.

To create the record of the 10 best possible quarterbacks by no means to make it to a Tremendous Bowl, the use of talent as a measure is not sufficient. Time issues too. A quarterback who’s above common for 10 years almost certainly has a greater shot of creating it to a Tremendous Bowl than a signal-caller who’s even higher, however lasts for best 5 seasons.

My figuring out issue for applicants was once to search out the passers who had performed smartly sufficient over the biggest selection of seasons to push their groups into the Tremendous Bowl. To be extra particular, I checked out quarterbacks who arrived after the merger and the seasons the place they had been the principle starter for his or her respective staff(s).

To determine whether or not a quarterback performed smartly sufficient to win a Tremendous Bowl, I used Professional Soccer Reference‘s listed model of adjusted yards in step with try, or AY/A+. AY/A improves on passer score via weighting touchdowns and interceptions extra as it should be. AY/A+ then indexes the stat to the league common, so we will be able to examine quarterbacks throughout eras.

The indexing scale makes it in order that a 100 AY/A+ is strictly league common, which turns out like a just right baseline for me. There are indisputably quarterbacks who’ve received Tremendous Bowls with no 100 AY/A+ — Trent Dilfer posted a 93 AY/A+ with the Ravens in 2000 ahead of being carried via their dominant protection to a Tremendous Bowl victory — however a league-average season is an inexpensive baseline for a quarterback retaining up his finish of the discount. We’re going to rank those quarterbacks, then, via how repeatedly they posted an AY/A+ of 100 or higher whilst they had been their staff’s number one starter.

Honorable mentions

As I discussed, there are a number of passers who best made it to the Tremendous Bowl as backups, together with Brunell, Bernie Kosar and Alex Smith. Danny White received a hoop whilst he was once Dallas’ punter, years ahead of he took over because the beginning signal-caller. Lets come with the ones quarterbacks, however since they in reality suited up for the championship (and a number of other of them received rings), it does not appear affordable to place them in the similar grouping because the 10 quarterbacks under.

There are many gamers who did not accrue sufficient seasons as an above-average passer to make the record. Modern day stars similar to Andrew Good fortune, Carson Palmer and Matthew Stafford all narrowly got here up brief, as did veterans similar to Steve DeBerg, Trent Inexperienced and Bert Jones. The ultimate man off the highest 10, surprisingly sufficient, was once not too long ago resurfaced Falcons backup Matt Schaub. Schaub posted six above-average seasons as his staff’s number one starter at quarterback, and if that does not appear specifically spectacular, imagine that about 1/2 of the quarterbacks who pulled that off made it to no less than one Tremendous Bowl.


It is not hyperbole to indicate that Blake is the best quarterback the Jets have drafted since Joe Namath. Whilst shut festival Ken O’Brien spent his whole occupation with the staff, Blake threw simply 9 passes for Gang Inexperienced ahead of making his approach to the Bengals. He sneaks onto this record via distinctive feature of a handful of seasons wherein he began both precisely 10 (2002) or 11 (1997, 2000) video games. I would not fault you for who prefer one of the most near-misses I discussed within the advent to the East Carolina product.

While you put Blake available in the market, regardless that, you in most cases were given reasonably above-average efficiency. Blake posted an AY/A+ between 102 and 108 in every of his first seven seasons as his staff’s number one starter. The issue is that he did not normally get that very same form of enhance from his protection. Over his 8 years as a number one starter, the common rank for Blake’s defenses in issues in step with sport was once 24th. He even controlled to catch the only Ray Lewis-era Ravens protection that was once disappointing, when Lewis overlooked 11 video games all over the 2002 season.

Closest shuttle to the Tremendous Bowl: 2000. The only time Blake did hyperlink up with an above-average protection was once 2000, when he joined the Saints. Blake began 7-Four, best to damage his foot and leave out the rest of the season. Aaron Brooks took over and led the Saints into the postseason, the place they disillusioned the protecting champion Rams ahead of dropping to the Vikings within the divisional around. This was once Blake’s best shuttle to the playoffs.


Probably the most dynamic quarterbacks of his period, Cunningham helped encourage the following technology of quarterbacks. He took a staggering quantity of punishment in an period wherein quarterbacks — specifically working quarterbacks — did not have the similar protections those self same passers have nowadays. Cunningham posted a scarcely plausible 25.6% sack charge in 1986, however his skill to increase performs and outrun the league’s best possible pass-rushers made him a shockingly treasured weapon.

A wholesome Cunningham was once in most cases sufficient to push a staff to the postseason. He began 12 or extra video games simply seven instances in 16 professional seasons, however the ones groups went a mixed 68-35-Zero, with Cunningham posting a .500 or higher file in every of the ones campaigns. In spite of his luck, regardless that, he received simply one in all his 5 playoff begins with the Eagles. After transferring to Minnesota in 1997, he took over for Brad Johnson in December and led a comeback victory over the Giants within the wild-card around, best to lose to the 49ers the next week.

Closest shuttle to the Tremendous Bowl: 1998. The next season, Cunningham took over because the Vikings’ starter. Buoyed via the addition of first-round pick out Randy Moss, Cunningham went 13-1 and led one of the crucial devastating offenses in league historical past to the NFC Championship Recreation. The Vikings led Atlanta 27-20 with 2 mins, 11 seconds left and had been about to seal the sport with a 38-yard subject target via Gary Anderson, who had made 122 consecutive kicks over two years. He driven his try extensive. The Falcons therefore tied the ranking in law and received it in time beyond regulation.


The presence of Cutler on any top-10 record will invariably get some folks offended, however whilst he changed into a punchline, he delivered six above-average seasons as a starter via our definition. Sadly, two of the ones seasons got here in Denver with defenses that ranked 28th and 30th in issues allowed. Cutler had an opportunity to make the postseason in 2008, just for his protection to permit 289 speeding yards and 5 touchdowns in a 52-21 blowout loss to the Chargers. Cutler, then 25, made his first and best shuttle to the Professional Bowl.

Traded to Chicago the next offseason after feuding with new trainer Josh McDaniels, Cutler bounced proper above and under the league-average mark throughout seven-plus seasons because the Bears’ starter. Handiest a type of seasons delivered a playoff run (2010), even if the Bears got here inside of a fourth-down Aaron Rodgers conversion of creating a moment shuttle in 2013. Via default, it was once Cutler’s best possible shot at a identify …

Closest shuttle to the Tremendous Bowl: 2010. After very easily dealing with the Beast Quake Seahawks at house, Cutler was once one house victory in opposition to the Packers clear of a shuttle to the Tremendous Bowl. It did not move smartly. He suffered a knee damage all over the primary 1/2 and struggled, going 6-of-14 for 80 yards with an interception. He attempted to intestine it out at the opening force of the second one 1/2 ahead of spending the remainder of the day at the sideline with what would later be identified as a sprained MCL.

In spite of teammates similar to Brian Urlacher coming to Cutler’s protection, the languid quarterback was once inexplicably criticized for status at the sideline to enhance his staff. A wholesome Cutler may had been ready to win this sport and move to the Tremendous Bowl, which might have modified all of the complexion of his occupation.


Recruited out of the Canadian Soccer League, a 29-year-old Garcia began his occupation via taking up for an injured Steve Younger within the ultimate days of the 49ers’ dynasty. Garcia then made the Professional Bowl in every of his first 3 seasons as a starter with the Niners ahead of starting the itinerant section of his occupation. The 6-foot-1 Garcia began video games for 4 other groups in 4 seasons, hooking up because the West Coast quarterback du jour for Invoice Walsh disciples similar to Steve Mariucci (Lions), Andy Reid (Eagles) and Jon Gruden (Buccaneers). He got here off the bench to guide a middling Eagles staff to the playoffs at age 36 in 2006 after which adopted that with a Professional Bowl season for the Bucs the following season.

Garcia began playoff video games in 4 seasons, with every of his two wins coming in opposition to the Giants. He threw for 331 yards and contributed 4 touchdowns in a 39-38 mystery in opposition to the Giants all over the 2002 playoffs, even if it was once overshadowed via the sport’s chaotic ultimate play.

Closest shuttle to the Tremendous Bowl: 2006. The 49ers had been blown out via the eventual Tremendous Bowl champion Bucs the next week in 2002. Garcia would get his subsequent playoff victory with the Eagles in 2006, beating the Giants 23-20. The Eagles confronted the Saints the next week in the divisional around, however after Philly didn’t convert on a third-and-1 from the 43-yard line when it was once down six issues within the fourth quarter, it kicked a subject target and did not ranking once more. The Giants after all were given their revenge on Garcia via beating his Buccaneers within the wild-card around the next season, which was once Garcia’s ultimate playoff look.


In the beginning drafted via the Oilers with the 1/3 general pick out to probably substitute Warren Moon, Everett wasn’t ready to return to phrases on a freelance with Houston and was once shipped off to the Rams. The Purdue product briefly took over because the beginning quarterback and spent 8 years in Los Angeles ahead of transferring to New Orleans, the place he spent 3 years beginning for the Saints.

Everett was once in most cases an above-average quarterback, even if he is almost certainly best possible remembered now for brawling with TV host Jim Rome within the early days of ESPN2. The issue was once that his defenses hardly ever returned the desire. In Everett’s 10 years as his staff’s number one starter, he performed with only one above-average protection via scoring common. Six of his 10 seasons as a starter got here hooked up to a protection that ranked within the backside six in issues allowed in step with sport.

Closest shuttle to the Tremendous Bowl: 1989. Everett began playoff video games in 3 seasons, however after dropping the opener in 1986 and 1988, his protection after all confirmed up in 1989. The Rams received on highway journeys east in opposition to the Eagles and Giants in video games wherein the protection allowed a complete of 20 issues. Within the NFC Championship Recreation, regardless that, the protection after all gave out in a 30-Three blowout in opposition to the 49ers. Everett did not be offering a lot lend a hand, as he was once 16-of-36 for 141 yards with 3 interceptions. In spite of the 6-foot-Five Everett being best 27, this was once his ultimate postseason look.


Hart, who posted 8 qualifying seasons underneath our measure, grew to become round his occupation with the St. Louis Cardinals after the arriving of mythical trainer Don Coryell in 1973. He made 4 consecutive Professional Bowls from 1974 thru 1977 for a staff that went a mixed 38-18 over that time period. In spite of posting 3 10-win seasons in a row in an period wherein groups performed best 14 video games, regardless that, Hart didn’t win a unmarried playoff sport all over his time as a starter. Two mythical defenses — the mid-’70s Vikings and Rams — stopped Hart in his tracks with divisional-round losses.

Closest shuttle to the Tremendous Bowl: None. Hart’s Cardinals by no means in reality got here with reference to Tremendous Bowl competition, even though they had been one of the most league’s best possible regular-season groups for a number of seasons underneath Coryell. Cutler displays up as one in all Hart’s maximum related quarterbacks on Professional Soccer Reference, and whilst Hart’s luck was once extra concentrated, that may well be a just right on-field comparability.


The famously snakebitten Romo spent 3 complete years at the Dallas bench after signing with the staff as an undrafted unfastened agent, however after Invoice Parcells refused to industry Romo to former Cowboys passing-game coordinator Sean Payton after the latter took over as Saints trainer, Romo took over the beginning process at age 26 and straight away emerged as one of the most league’s best possible quarterbacks. He posted just one sub-.500 season because the Cowboys’ starter, a six-start marketing campaign in 2010. He was once at all times just right and from time to time nice ahead of accidents and the emergence of Dak Prescott ended in Romo’s retirement in 2017.

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