NFL Quarterback Comparisons: Drew Brees vs Dan Marino

QB Comparisons:  Drew Brees vs Dan Marino

There is nothing as entertaining as two quarterbacks who are slinging the ball down the field, accumulating huge yardage totals and hitting their receivers when going long. Brees and Marino could certainly do that, and in 2001 Brees broke Marino’s record for passing yards in one season which he set in 1984. Marino’s 5,084 yards was eclipsed by Brees’ 5,476. Does that make Brees a better QB than Marino, does leading the Saints to a famous Super Bowl win do that, or is Marino still better as the numbers he put up were done in a time when NFL teams didn’t pass as often as they do today?

Dan Marino set a lot of NFL records as a Miami Dolphin. Around two thirds of them have been passed, some by Drew Brees. Marino still has the most career games with 400 yards, or more, of passing as well as most seasons leading the NFL in attempts, completions and also the lowest sack percentage. Marino set the record with 9 games of 300 or more yards of passing in 1984, but Brees eclipsed that in 2001 with 13. Marino only took 153 games to reach 40,000 passing yards, a record until Brees did it in 152 games. Brees has set other records, like passing for the most touchdowns in a game with 7 and the highest completion percentage for a career, 66.36%, and one season, 71.23%.

A Look at the Stats

Both players have received the Walter Payton Man of the Year award. Marino’s amazing numbers in 1984 got him the league MVP trophy. Drew Brees led the New Orleans Saints to victory at Super Bowl XLIV and Brees was the MVP of the game. Both have been to nine Pro Bowls. Marino was amazing, leading the NFL in passing yards five seasons and passing touchdowns three times, but Brees has been even better with six times leading for passing yards and four seasons of throwing the most touchdowns. Marino ended his career with 61,361 passing yards, playing in 242 games. Brees is still going and his current career totals are 60,903 passing yards from 217 games. Marino passed for 420 TDs, Brees is on 428. Marino played in 18 playoff games for 32 touchdowns, Brees has appeared in 11 playoff games and thrown 24 touchdown passes.

When Marino was passing to the “Marks”, Mark Duper and Mark Clayton, it was when NFL teams averaged 206 passing yards per game. When Brees was setting records in 2011 it was when NFL teams averaged 230 yards in the air per game. Bree would have been a star QB in the 1980s, Marino would set records if he was playing today, but which quarterback was better?

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