Another Super Bowl that won’t feature the Dallas Cowboys is right around the corner.
The franchise hasn’t played in the big game since 1996, but that won’t stop us from taking a trip down memory lane to revisit the careers of the Dallas quarterbacks who have won it all. Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com recently compiled a list of starting quarterbacks in the Super Bowl, ranking each player based on variables like regular season success, All-Pro and Pro Bowl appearances and career achievements.
Without further ado, let’s see where the championship-contending Cowboys signal callers ranked on the list:
11. Roger Staubach (2-2 in Super Bowls)
When the Cowboys’ successful run through the 1970s is discussed, it’s difficult not to bring up the name of Roger Staubach. He took over Dallas’ starting quarterback gig in 1971 and led the franchise to six NFC title game appearances.
Staubach’s playing career lasted 11 seasons, starting after he finished four years on active duty for the Navy in Vietnam. He threw for 22,700 yards to go with 153 touchdowns and 109 interceptions. While Staubach’s career statistics aren’t as jaw-dropping as some of the other signal callers mentioned on Rosenthal’s list, the Navy man led his team to victories at Super Bowls VI and XII. He was also a six-time Pro Bowler and a five-time All-NFC choice.
The No. 11 ranking given to Staubach puts him in ‘The best second tier ever,’ one spot ahead of Texas native Drew Brees and two spots ahead of Packers legend Brett Favre. Staubach just missed out on the top 10, sitting one spot behind Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who will make his third Super Bowl appearance in about a week.
Here’s what Rosenthal had to say about Staubach’s ranking: “Staubach is a great “What if?” player, because he didn’t become a full-time starter until he was 29 years old. He’s still the consensus best quarterback of the 1970s and led the league in passer rating four times. He probably gets downgraded too much for the era in which he played.”
16. Troy Aikman (3-0 in Super Bowls)
When Troy Aikman was in a championship setting at the professional level, his team rarely came up short.
Aikman led the Cowboys to wins in Super Bowls XXVII, XXVIII and XXX. Like Staubach, Aikman spent his entire professional career with the Cowboys, putting up 32,942 passing yards with 165 touchdowns and 141 interceptions. He was a six-time Pro Bowler and named to one All-Pro team, along with two All-NFC teams.
With an undefeated record in Super Bowls, Aikman landed in the ‘In (or should be in) the Hall of Fame’ category of the rankings. He came in at No. 16, one spot ahead of Steelers legend Terry Bradshaw and one spot behind another Steeler in Ben Roethlisberger.
Rosenthal’s take on Aikman: “Aikman’s peak (1991-96) was impressive, but unfortunately too short.”
42. Craig Morton (0-1 in Super Bowl appearance with the Cowboys)
Morton was drafted by the Cowboys in 1965 and spent the first four seasons of his career as the backup to Don Meredith. Before Staubach became the man in Dallas, Morton led Dallas to an appearance in Super Bowl V.
The Cowboys went on to lose that game 16-13 to the Baltimore Colts. Although he didn’t return to the championship game with Dallas, he led the Denver Broncos to Super Bowl XII later in his career against Staubach and the Cowboys.
Morton landed in the ‘Crazy talent for a tier this low’ category of the list. His No. 42 ranking puts him one spot behind Matt Hasselbeck and one spot ahead of Kerry Collins.
Rosenthal’s take on Morton: “Morton, a Super Bowl starter for two different organizations, somehow never made a Pro Bowl despite leading the league in yards per attempt three times.”
- Other Cowboys on the list include: Drew Bledsoe (No. 40) and Brad Johnson (No. 47). Both of these signal callers made Super Bowl appearances, they just didn’t happen with the Cowboys.
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