Top 10 Playoff QBs in NFL History

1 of 11

Top 10 NFL Playoff Quarterbacks

Top Ten Playoff Quarterbacks
USA TODAY Sports-Stew Milne

The NFL Playoffs remain one of the most watched sporting events in the United States. Teams attempt to win in the postseason to advance to the Super Bowl, the ultimate one day winner take all competition in all four major sports.

One of the key pieces to NFL Playoffs and Super Bowl victories is the team’s quarterback. The man under center is supposed to lead his team by directing players on the field and ultimately making split second decisions that will decide a winner and loser for the games.

Two of the best quarterbacks in NFL history, Peyton Manning and Dan Marino, have losing records in the NFL Playoffs. Should quarterbacks be punished for poor performance in the postseason? Or is the fact that Manning has started in 20 Playoff games, the fifth most all time, a good enough reason to make him one of the best playoff quarterbacks of all time?

How does one decide between Terry Bradshaw and Joe Montana, who both won a record four Super Bowls each? Does their win totals or appearance totals separate the two? Several current NFL quarterbacks appear on this list. This year’s playoffs could change the position of at least one in years to come. Would a third Super Bowl victory from Eli Manning or Ben Roethlisberger move them into the all time greatest discussion?

Click through the slideshow to find out who made the cut. Disagree with the picks or think I left someone out, share your thoughts on Twitter and Google Plus.

2 of 11

10. Roger Staubach

10. Roger Staubach
USA TODAY Sports-Matthew Emmons

NFL Playoffs Record: 11-6

Super Bowl Record: 2-2

Roger Staubach led the Dallas Cowboys to four Super Bowl appearances. Staubach ranks in the top ten for NFL Playoff appearances and wins.

3 of 11

9. Brett Favre

9. Brett Favre
USA TODAY Sports-Geoff Burke

NFL Playoffs Record: 13-11

Super Bowl Record: 1-1

Brett Favre only won a single Super Bowl, despite a 20 year NFL career. Favre did guide the Green Bay Packers to back-to-back Super Bowl appearances in Super Bowl XXXI and XXXII. However, in the NFL Playoffs, Favre always seemed to have a team there. He guided the Packers and Minnesota Vikings to 24 Playoff appearances. Prior to the 2013 NFL season, Favre held the record with 24 Playoff games started. Tom Brady will match that record on Sunday and has a chance to pass it with a win.

4 of 11

8. Ben Roethlisberger

8. Ben Roethlisberger
USA TODAY Sports-Matthew Emmons

NFL Playoffs Record: 10-4

Super Bowl Record: 2-1

Ben Roethlisberger, current quarterback for the Pittsburgh Steelers, has a chance to climb up this list with another Super Bowl victory. Roethlisberger has a career Super Bowl record of 2-1, with wins in Super Bowl XL and XLIII. If Roethlisberger can stay healthy, he can improve on his playoff and possibly Super Bowl record.

5 of 11

7. Jim Plunkett

7. Jim Plunkett
USA TODAY Sports-Kirby Lee

NFL Playoffs Record: 8-2

Super Bowl Record: 2-0

Despite leading the Oakland Raiders to two Super Bowls, Jim Plunkett is not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Plunkett is the only non-active quarterback with two Super Bowl rings that is left out of the HOF. Plunkett guided the Raiders to Super Bowl wins in XV and XVIII. Plunkett also has the second highest win percentage of quarterbacks appearing in 10 or more games. Plunkett had an 8-2 record in the postseason, earning him a spot on this list.

6 of 11

6. Troy Aikman

6. Troy Aikman
USA TODAY Sports-Dale Zanine

NFL Playoffs Record: 11-4

Super Bowl Record: 3-0

Troy Aikman helped cement the Dallas Cowboys as America’s team during the 1990s. With Aikman, the Cowboys won Super Bowls XXVII, XXVIII and XXX.

7 of 11

5. Eli Manning

5. Eli Manning
USA TODAY Sports-Brian Spurlock

NFL Playoffs Record: 8-3

Super Bowl Record: 2-0

Eli Manning will always be compared to his brother Peyton and father Archie. However, when it comes to the NFL Playoffs, Eli is in a league of his own. Manning is one of only 11 NFL quarterbacks with two or more Super Bowl rings. Eli has a perfect record in the big game with victories in Super Bowl XLII and XLVI. Manning also has an impressive 8-3 record in all playoff games.

8 of 11

4. Terry Bradshaw

4. Terry Bradshaw
USA TODAY Sports-Kirby Lee

NFL Playoffs Record: 14-5

Super Bowl Record: 4-0

Terry Bradshaw is considered one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time. Before he was a NFL analyst on TV, Bradshaw was busy winning Super Bowls with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

9 of 11

3. Joe Montana

3. Joe Montana
USA TODAY Sports-Dale Zanine

NFL Playoffs Record: 16-7

Super Bowl Record: 4-0

Joe Montana holds an impressive 4-0 record in the Super Bowl, a feat only accomplished by him and Terry Bradshaw. Montana led the San Francisco 49ers to victory in Super Bowl XVI, XIX, XXIII, and XXIV.

10 of 11

2. Tom Brady

2. Tom Brady
USA TODAY Sports-Matthew Emmons

NFL Playoffs Record: 17-6

Super Bowl Record: 3-2

Tom Brady has a chance to add to his impressive numbers during the 2013 NFL Playoffs. Brady passed Joe Montana for most postseason wins with a new record of 17. Brady has been to five Super Bowls, which is tied for the record by a quarterback. If Brady can guide the New England Patriots to the 2013 Super Bowl, he would pass John Elway for the record. Brady has won Super Bowl XXXVI, XXXVIII and XXXIX in his NFL career.

11 of 11

1. Bart Starr

1. Bart Starr
USA TODAY Sports-Matthew Emmons

NFL Playoffs Record: 9-1

Super Bowl Record: 2-0

Bart Starr has the highest NFL Playoff winning percentage for quarterbacks in more than three games. Starr is best remembered for leading the Green Bay Packers to victories in Super Bowl I and Super Bowl II. Prior to the creation of the Super Bowl, Starr was 3-1 in NFL Championship games. In his career, Starr posted a 5-1 record in championship games. Hard to argue with that kind of success in the NFL.


Around the Web