Wed | Jun 20, 2018

New York Giants' Eli Manning during practice on Friday.

Published:Sunday | February 5, 2012 | 12:00 AM
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady throws during practice on Wednesday.- AP photos

Who's the better QB: Brady or Eli?

When asked earlier this season if he considered himself an elite quarterback in the same vein as Tom Brady, New York Giants' Eli Manning said at the time that he believes that he certainly belongs in 'that class".

Today, when the two cross paths again in Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis, Manning will have a chance to secure his status alongside the legendary New England Patriot quarterback as one of the very best to play in the league.

The two have faced each other on four occasions with Manning getting the better of Brady and the Patriots in three of those meetings, including a famous win four years ago at Super Bowl XLII, in which Manning was also named MVP. That was Manning's first and only win in the Super Bowl.

Married to a supermodel and gracing the covers of magazines all over the world, it's the media savvy Brady who commands the greater appeal to fans across the world.

However, it's not all about GQ appeal for Brady, as his numbers and impressive CV certainly backs up his reputation. Seven Pro Bowl appearances in his 10th season as a starter, along with his three Super Bowl wins, add a lot of value to his claim.

Manning's best season overshadowed

5,235 yards and 39 touchdowns overshadowed Manning's best season as a professional so far, in which he had 4,933 yards and 29 touchdowns.

But how will a win tonight for either quarterback reflect on their career in the long run, and just how close is Manning to Brady's lofty standards?

"It's not that close, man," said former Oakland Raiders strongman Rod Martin, a two-time Super Bowl champion himself.

Martin, who will be keeping a keen eye open on the pair later today, as a member of ESPN's panel aboard Royal Caribbean's Oasis of the Seas for this year's 'Super Bowl at Sea', believes Manning will eventually get there, but that he still has a way to go.

"You have to look at Brady now because of what he has already done. Eli is still young and he is still coming up, and one of these days he may make a claim to be the greatest quarterback, but right now you have to go with Brady," Martin said.

"This is his fifth Super Bowl, and even though he has not won them all like Joe Montana, he is going to be talked about in the same category, especially if he wins this one."

- A.L.