Giants legend Lawrence Taylor gave an impassioned plea on who he thinks is the best quarterback in NFL history—or rather, why it isn’t Tom Brady.
Taylor went on the I Am Athlete podcast and discussed his pick in a video posted Tuesday, as well as why the recently retired Brady isn’t worthy of the honor in his book.
“Joe Montana is still my man,” Taylor said. “He’s still my man. I mean let’s just say [who] is the greatest quarterback, hey, I’m still with Joe Montana. I’m not going with Tom Brady. Tom Brady’s got all the rules on his side, you can’t touch him. You can’t touch him. If you hit him, if you breathe on him, they’re gonna throw a flag.
“I don’t understand how he drops back eight yards and he’s sitting in a little cocoon and they’re not sending people at him. Why the defense not sending people at him. … if I was playing, I’m hitting him every play.”
Taylor’s spirited argument brings to mind multiple penalties called in favor of Brady during his career that were… rather questionable. In Week 5 of the 2022 season, Falcons defensive tackle Grady Jarrett was called for roughing Brady on an ordinary-looking sack with three minutes left in the game. The controversial flag helped the Buccaneers slide by with a 21–15 victory and took away the Falcons’ opportunity to finish their fourth-quarter rally.
As for the Montana and Brady GOAT talk, Brady retired with 89,214 all-time passing yards and 649 touchdown passes, the NFL’s all-time leader in both metrics. Montana finished his career ranked No. 4 in passing yards (40,551) and touchdown passes (273). Brady’s seven Super Bowl wins are the most in history, while Montana notched four. But if this current quarterback era is defined by questionable roughing-the-passer penalties that have seemingly made them untouchable, Taylor’s claim may be a lot more valid.