Congratulations, Ben Volin! You are not the only person who thinks Tom Brady would be better off losing earlier in the playoffs than in the Super Bowl. Another high-profile media figure twisted himself into knots trying to make the same argument recently.
The bad news is, that high-profile media figure is Mike Francesa. Not exactly the best company.
On Francesa’s show Monday, he originally declared Brady is not the best quarterback of all-time. “Here’s why I say you can say he’s among (the greatest quarterbacks), but you can’t declare him,” Francesa explained to his audience, which was surely waiting with baited breath. “He’s not the best everyday quarterback –– (Peyton) Manning was. He’s not the best postseason quarterback –– (Joe) Montana was.”
It’s absurd that Francesa still thinks Manning was better than Brady, an argument that effectively ended in 2017, when Brady hoisted his fifth Super Bowl while Manning watched somewhere from the comfort of retirement. But for the sake of this blog post, let’s focus on the Montana line.
Francesa’s contention is that Montana’s 4-0 Super Bowl record is superior to Brady’s 5-4 mark, because the 49ers great is undefeated in the big game. That ignores, of course, that nine is greater than four. It is better to play in nine Super Bowls than four. This is pretty self-explanatory. Montana’s record in non-Super Bowl playoff games is 12-7, including four losses in the opening round.
Brady, meanwhile, has only lost in the first-round of the playoffs once. His overall postseason record is 29-10, and he’s now reached more Super Bowls than any other franchise in the NFL.
A caller, “Mike in Montclair,” pointed all of this out to New York’s sports talk legend. “You discount all the games Montana lost leading up to the Super Bowl that Brady didn’t,” he said. “Those games don’t count? The first-rounds that Montana lost, second-round, the only game that counts is the Super Bowl?”
Francesa, who’s metaphysically incapable of admitting defeat, dropped the caller and changed the argument.
Well, kind of. It’s hard to understand what he’s trying to say.
“The question was not about the Super Bowl. What we were talking about is performance in the Super Bowl,” he said.