On Monday, Philadelphia Eagles sideline reporter Howard Eskin stated his opinion that Sam Bradford is "the best quarterback in the NFC East right now." I understand that Mr. Eskin has covered the Eagles for a while, therefore he is understandably a bit biased, but there is a difference in being a homer and being completely delusional. Don't get me wrong, I don't think Sam Bradford is a bad quarterback. In fact, I like him. But he is by no means the best quarterback in the NFC East. Not by a long shot. That title belongs to Tony Romo.
Now, some Giants fans may take offense to this. After all, Eli has 2 Super Bowl rings and Romo has zero. However, Super Bowl rings are a team accomplishment. Individually, the Dallas Cowboys' Romo is clearly the better quarterback - and it isn't close. You can check out my argument for Romo > Eli from last October here. After Romo's MVP-caliber season, my argument is even stronger now. But I digress. This article is not about Romo vs Eli, it's about Romo vs Bradford. Frankly, I'm a bit ashamed that I even have to make this argument. Romo is a top 5 quarterback while Bradford might not even be a top 15 quarterback. However, I sometimes feel the need to put uninformed members of the media in their place (much like I did with Adam Schein when he called the Cowboys the worst team in the NFC last preseason). Howard Eskin is just my latest victim. Now let's get started.
Tony Romo has a career passer rating of 97.6. That's good for 2nd in NFL history - behind only Aaron Rodgers. Sam Bradford's career passer rating? 79.3. That's 69th in NFL history.
Tony Romo has a 65.2 completion %, which is the 6th best in NFL history. Sam Bradford's completion % is 58.6, which is 58th in NFL history.
Tony Romo averages 7.9 yards per attempt, which is the 6th best in NFL history. Sam Bradford averages 6.3 yards per attempt, which is 167th in NFL history.
Tony Romo has a touchdown/interception ratio of 2.20, which is the 4th best in NFL history. Sam Bradford has a ratio of 1.55, which is the 23rd in NFL history.
Tony Romo has a touchdown % of 5.7, which is the 18th best in NFL history and the 3rd best among active quarterbacks. Sam Bradford has a touchdown % of 3.4, which is 163rd in NFL history and 28th among active quarterbacks.
Sam Bradford has only played 49 games in his NFL career. In those games he has thrown 59 touchdowns and 38 interceptions. In Tony Romo's last 49 games, he has thrown 93 touchdowns and 39 interceptions.
In the 4th quarter, Tony Romo has a completion % of 64.8, a passer rating of 100.9 and a TD/INT ratio of 2.43. In the 4th quarter, Sam Bradford has a 58.5 completion %, 76.0 passer rating and a 1.26 TD/INT ratio.
Now, I understand why Howard would feel optimistic about Sam Bradford based off of his preseason thus far - Bradford was 10-for-10 with 3 touchdown passes vs the Packers last week. However, Bradford has historically performed well in the preseason. He has thrown 19 touchdown passes and 2 interceptions in 5 preseasons. But as soon as September begins, Bradford has thrown 17 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. The big difference? Teams don't game plan and are very vanilla in the preseason. It's much easier to have success in those conditions rather than when teams are studying your film, attacking your weaknesses and coming at you full force - which is what happens in the regular season.
If Bradford stays healthy (which history says won't happen) he could very well have a big year for Philadelphia. Even if this happens, he still wouldn't be considered the best QB in the division. One successful year wouldn't automatically earn him that title. Tony Romo has consistently put up top-5 numbers for nearly 10 straight years, while breaking nearly every franchise passing record, as well as several NFL records. Unless Bradford can somehow surpass those accomplishments, he will remain in Tony Romo's shadow.