C.J. Stroud Gives Questionable All-Time Quarterback Ranking – ‘You Want the Rings Dawg’

C.J. Stroud held nothing back when asked whose NFL career he would prefer between Eli Manning and Aaron Rodgers.

C.J. Stroud enjoyed one of the greatest rookie seasons in league history last year while helping the Houston Texans win the AFC South.

Now, he’s willing to drop his own opinions on some of the best quarterbacks in the game today and all time.

After dishing out a controversial list of top quarterbacks currently competing for a championship, Stroud also made his feelings felt when it comes to judging some of the all-time great quarterbacks in league history.

Spoiler alert: One of his most controversial takes will shock you.

C.J. Stroud Takes Eli Manning Over Aaron Rodgers

On the “Million Dollar Worth a Game” podcast, the reigning Offensive Rookie of the Year was asked whether he would prefer to have the career of two-time Super Bowl winner Eli Manning or four-time NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers.

Stroud, as always, was a man of few words.

“You want the rings, dawg. Eli got two,” Stroud explained. “We’re humans, too.”

While Rodgers did win a Super Bowl on his own, the lack of playoff success led Stroud to want the kind of longevity that Manning — a two-time title winner had.

In 15 starts last season, Stroud completed close to 64% of his passes for 23 touchdowns on just five interceptions. His 4,100 passing yards are third all-time for rookie signal-callers behind Justin Herbert and Andrew Luck.

Stroud also helped turn around a Texans team that won three games all year in 2022 to a 10-win unit that won a home playoff game this past season.

It was in those playoffs that Stroud showed his true potential. In two postseason games against the Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens, Stroud threw for over 400 yards and three touchdowns without throwing an interception. It was the first playoff win for Houston since the 2019 season.

Is Houston’s iconic rookie quarterback right with his quarterback rankings, though? It’s time to revisit the careers of both Manning and Rodgers.

Revisiting Eli Manning’s Career

Of all Hall-of-Fame-bound quarterbacks, Manning might be the most difficult to determine.

Yes, his Super Bowl victories against Tom Brady (one against an undefeated Patriots team) are history. Both championship runs in 2007 and 2011 were aided by a dominant defensive line, but also saved thanks to Manning’s timely passing plays. He is one of just six players in NFL history with two Super Bowl MVPs.

Ranking-wise, Manning deserves to be on the list of some of the greatest quarterbacks ever. He’s 10th all-time in yards, 10th in completions, and 10th in passing touchdowns.

The problem? Well, outside of numbers that come from playing 16 years in the modern game, Manning’s overall career numbers are staggeringly disappointing.

The Giants’ longtime franchise quarterback was just 117-117 as a starter, led the league in interceptions three times, never won a league MVP award, and went to the Pro Bowl just four times. He did not win a playoff game outside his two Super Bowl-winning seasons.

An 8-4 playoff record gives him fewer postseason wins than Super Bowl-less quarterbacks like Donovan McNabb or even quarterbacks with just one title like Rodgers.

In the end, Manning’s all-time legacy is hotly contested. His enshrinement in Canton, Ohio, while expected, may not come as quickly as many may think.

Revisiting Aaron Rodgers’ Career

A common misconception behind Rodgers’ career is that he cannot win the “big one.” Rodgers is a four-time NFL MVP with a Super Bowl title and a game MVP award.

His three-touchdown, 304 passing-yard day in Super Bowl XLV against a Pittsburgh Steelers defense that was the best in football that year was one of the best performances in NFL history.

Rodgers certainly looked more impressive on the game’s biggest stage compared to Manning’s Super Bowl numbers.

The problem for Rodgers in this all-time debate is that he hasn’t gone back to the Super Bowl since that 2010 season. The former Packers signal-caller and current leader of the New York Jets is 11-10 in the playoffs with a 1-4 blemish in conference title games.

Losses to the San Francisco 49ers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Seattle Seahawks show a quarterback who has made do with lesser talent around him until it matters in the playoffs.

It comes down to preference whether Stroud or other players and fans want Manning’s career over Rodgers’. The reality is both played the game for a long time and have become synonymous with the era they helped shape.

Listen to the PFN Inside Access Podcast!

Listen to the PFN Inside Access Podcast! Click the embedded player below to listen, or you can find the PFN Fantasy Podcast on iTunes, Spotify, and all major podcast platforms.  Be sure to subscribe and leave us a five-star review!

Related Articles