Originally posted by OKC49erFan:You make good points:Originally posted by bigmur49:
Man, I figured I would get flamed then locked for starting this thread and it has actually caused a little debate.
Personally, Montana will always be #1 to me but I think it is almost out of mythical legend more than actual skill vs Brady or anyone else. Joe has 4 RIngs, no turnover and along with Walsh set this franchise on a path that is pretty much unparralleled in the NFL.
He wasn't the only great player we had though, and the Niners did suffer some pretty big losses during his time as well.
Regardless of a couple of FG wins, I would say the teams Brady took to and won Superbowls were not nearly as talented as the Niners of the 80's. Also, although Montana went up against some legendary teams and players, the NFL in general is faster, rogher, and more skilled than in Montana's era.
Lastly, again I am not trying to compare Brady today, I am trying to hypothetically compare Brady in 2015 with 5 Rings, with the last couple coming with us. I might still answer Montana out of loyalty, and Brady might never truly feel like a Niner if he only played here 3 or 4 seasons, but I think the majority of non-Niner homers would give it to Brady.
And of course, to bring this back to reality, Brady isn't coming here, he will play hi entire career in New England, and hopefully never get the 4th Ring because Alex Smith will win every Superbowl until he retires. Or Nate Davis.. err Troy Smith, or Mike Vick, or Jake Locker
I would disagree the NFL is rougher today. I think it was MUCH rougher in the past. Today, you can't REALLY hit the QB. You can't REALLY smack the hell out of a receiver if he isn't looking (Ronnie Lott would be fined every game in this league). As far as speed... Darrell Green, Rod Woodson were pretty damn fast, also Dieon Sanders (young). The NFL always had speed. But, back then... it had grit. Players today (generally) just don't have enough of that in my opinion.
I wouldn't be so sure about skill being higher today either. Rules make it easier for QBs, WRs to play. That doesn't really raise the bar requiring higher skill level. Players get paid more also, as we've seen players disappear after a payday.
Teams today are in no way comparable to the dynastic teams of the 70s, 80s, and 90s. They were stacked top to bottom. It was a problem because the lower teams couldn't compete. That is the reason for free agency, salary cap, and rules changes (also for high offensive football).
The players are bigger now but that is only relative. Speed is also relative but I do not think the game is faster now overall.
The biggest change in the game is one that favors Montana as a more effective QB. Back in his day, there was FAR more contact allowed by defenders against receivers coming off the LOS as well as before and after the ball was in the air. Also, once the receiver caught the ball, the contact that was allowed back in the '80s was much greater. The result was that receivers had to have their head on a swivel AND be strong and tough, just to play the game. Today's receivers may as well be playing flag football in comparison. Today if a defender even farts within five yards of a receiver, the receiver starts calling for a flag before the stink even reaches him. The first time Ochostinko came across the middle against Ronnie Lott, the next thing he would remember would be looking for his gold teeth in the grass.
The game HAS changed but Montana's intangibles were the best of any quarterback...EVER.