There’s no question that with the NFL’s increasing shift to a passing-focused league, the quarterback position has both more valuable and invaluable. Having the right quarterback in place can transform a team from picking very high up in the NFL Draft, to being one of the last teams standing in the playoff race.
And that’s exactly what the majority of these quarterbacks accomplished – turning their franchises into winners, and themselves into household names for recent sports fans.
Here’s our ranking of the 20 greatest quarterbacks of the last 25 years, led off with 5 guys who just missed the cut:
Honorable Mention #5: Mark Brunell
Of all the quarterbacks on this list, it feels like Mark Brunell never truly gets the recognition he deserves for conducting what were some of the most dynamic and fun — if not underrated — offenses of the Jacksonville Jaguars in the late 1990’s.
Throwing the ball to Jimmy Smith and Keenan McCardell, Brunell led the NFL with 4,367 yards passing in 1996 (a huge passing total back then), and helped the Jaguars to four-straight winning seasons between 1996 and 1999; he averaged over 3,300 yards passing over that time span, in an offense that featured a healthy running game under then-head coach Tom Coughlin.