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Building the Ultimate NFL QB: Tom Brady’s Pocket Management, Patrick Mahomes’ Creativity, and More

How would you go about building the ultimate NFL QB? We looked at legendary signal-callers, came up with 10 traits, and built the perfect QB.

Is there a “perfect” NFL quarterback? Probably not, regardless of how you feel about Patrick Mahomes or Tom Brady.

However, there are traits you look for in each quarterback, and some signal-callers deliver in those areas better than others.

With that in mind, we had some fun and took a crack at building the ultimate NFL QB.

Building the Ultimate NFL QB: Best Players for 10 Different Traits

(Note: We focused on quarterbacks who enjoyed great success in the NFL. So, someone like New England’s Joe Milton III, who has otherworldly arm strength, wasn’t considered.)

Arm Strength: Josh Allen

This was an easy pick. Josh Allen has an absolute howitzer and can make any throw on the field. He’s also virtually weather-proof, capable of making big-time throws despite swirling winds.

Allen is far from a perfect quarterback, but his arm strength and pure arm talent are incredible.

Accuracy: Aaron Rodgers

This is a tricky one. On one hand, some Rodgers detractors point toward his 1.4% career interception percentage — the lowest mark in NFL history — as evidence of a selfish player who’s too worried about his stats. And there’s truth to those criticisms.

However, you don’t post those kinds of numbers without being incredibly accurate. And Rodgers might be the most accurate QB in NFL history. He can put the ball on a dime.

Mobility: Lamar Jackson

This was between Lamar Jackson and Michael Vick, and we went with Jackson.

While Jackson and Vick are comparable in speed, Jackson has a clear edge in toughness and physicality. In addition to being able to run by and around anyone, Jackson also can run through anyone. He’s the most dangerous rushing quarterback of all time.

Creativity: Patrick Mahomes

There’s nothing Patrick Mahomes can’t do, and he seemingly does something new every week. Kids today grow up saying “Mahomes!” when they play in the backyard like kids used to yell “Jordan!” on the playground.

Mahomes is the most creative quarterback we’ve ever seen, and his creativity almost always is meaningful, rather than just for show.

Clutch Gene: Joe Montana

Most people would probably argue for Tom Brady being this spot, and they might be right. Brady authored more comeback wins than any quarterback in history, and his comeback performances in Super Bowls (looking at you, Seattle Seahawks and Atlanta Falcons) are legendary.

However, we needed to include Montana on this list, as he’s the second-greatest QB in NFL history. And the “clutch gene” category feels right.

The only evidence you need: Montana went 4-0 in Super Bowls while throwing 11 touchdowns and zero interceptions. That’s hard to beat.

Leadership: Roger Staubach

You could argue for Brady in this spot, too. He certainly is the best leader among modern-era QBs.

But the pick here is Roger Staubach, who earned the nickname “Captain America” by being an exceptional leader and a total badass.

One of the greatest QBs in history, Staubach also played at the United States Naval Academy and spent a year in Vietnam as a naval supply officer. He led the Dallas Cowboys to two Super Bowl titles in the 1970s and is one of the great leaders in professional sports history.

Toughness: Ben Roethlisberger

Not to sound like a broken record, but you also could put Brady in this spot. The only games he missed were due to a torn ACL and the Deflategate suspension. And he played through numerous injuries during his career, including many never made public.

But how can you pick against Roethlisberger? The Pittsburgh Steelers legend seemingly always was banged up yet refused to come off the field. When you think of Roethlisberger, chances are you think of him taking a big hit, limping to the huddle, and hobbling through a broken play before delivering a touchdown. Or something like that.

Pocket Management: Tom Brady

The greatest QB in NFL history finally shows up.

Brady was incredible at many aspects of quarterbacking, but his pocket management was truly unrivaled. Neither quick nor fast, Brady utilized perfect footwork to maneuver the pocket and keep his eyes downfield. He also managed the pocket exceptionally well, recognizing when to pull the trigger and when to avoid potential mistakes.

Smarts: Peyton Manning

Peyton Manning is often called the “smartest quarterback in NFL history,” and for good reason. His pre-snap reads were always on point, and his post-snap decision-making was amazing. Manning had all the answers to the test and was always two steps ahead of opposing defenders.

If you want someone to teach a doctorate course in playing quarterback, Manning is your guy.

Moxie: Joe Namath

You could argue for other quarterbacks in this spot. Joe Burrow comes to mind, as does Brett Favre (the on-field version, anyway). But we’re going with Joe Namath, who had the gall to guarantee a Super Bowl victory — and deliver on the promise. He played the game with a ton of moxie and arguably is the coolest quarterback in football history.