Super QB matchup is old school vs. new school

Posted Saturday, Feb. 01, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
A

12 years, 250 days

Age difference between Peyton Manning (born March 24, 1976) and Russell Wilson (born Nov. 29, 1988), greatest ever for a pair of Super Bowl quarterbacks. Kurt Warner and Ben Roethlisberger (Super Bowl XLIII) held the previous record of 10 years, 253 days.

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

Peyton Manning threw for 5,477 yards and 55 touchdowns, setting NFL records. Those statistics perfectly describe Manning’s style.

So does his total of minus-31 rushing yards on 32 carries this season.

It was the fewest rushing yards for any NFL player in 40 years, with 307 players gaining more rushing yards this season.

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson gained almost as many rushing yards this season (539) as the Denver Broncos quarterback has in his 16-year career (697).

The most running Manning will do Sunday is when he trots out for pregame introductions. Wilson, on the other hand, is a threat to break Steve McNair’s Super Bowl record for rushing yards by a quarterback (64).

For the second Super Bowl in a row, the starting quarterbacks took different routes to get here.

“You have the mobile quarterback with Russell Wilson, and then Peyton as the pure, drop-back, shotgun quarterback,” said Jimmy Johnson, the former Dallas Cowboys coach turned Fox broadcaster. “I don’t know if we’d say ‘old school/new school,’ because people are still looking for the Peyton Manning-type quarterback, but you’ve got so many running quarterbacks coming out of college now, and you are incorporating some of the read option, etc. into the game and the play action. It’s a different game.”

Manning, 37, was the No. 1 overall draft choice in 1998. He has lived up to his can’t-miss billing by throwing for 64,964 yards and 491 touchdowns in his 16-year career. A second Super Bowl ring could give him the mythical title of greatest ever.

Wilson, 25, was a third-round draft pick in 2012. He has overcome concerns about his height (5-10 5/8) by going 24-8 in his two seasons with 6,475 passing yards and 52 passing touchdowns as well as 1,028 rushing yards and five rushing touchdowns.

“It’s a young gun versus really NFL royalty,” said Troy Aikman, the Cowboys quarterback turned Fox analyst. “On the one hand, you’ve got a seasoned veteran who has been here and has been on the biggest stage before and has been on stage since he left high school and probably even going back before that, because of his father. Then you have Russell, who is mature beyond his years. He’s a great ambassador for the game, as is Peyton. I just don’t feel like the stage is going to be too big for him. I expect him to be able to come in and play well. It should be an exciting game.”

Manning and Wilson seemingly have little in common. But Broncos offensive coordinator Adam Gase sees comparable intelligence. Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell talks about their preparation. Broncos coach John Fox loves their leadership.

“The thing I try to work on to be more like him is the attention to detail,” Wilson said. “I definitely believe that is one of my strengths. Obviously, Peyton Manning is known for his leadership, known for all those amazing things he does at the line of scrimmage, with his checks and all of that, so I’m working to get there. But I think that competitive edge is very, very similar too, where we’re very competitive. We want to lead our football team. We want to put our football team in a great position every time we step on the field.”

NFL Network analyst Kurt Warner, who quarterbacked the St. Louis Rams and the Arizona Cardinals in Super Bowls, argues Wilson and Manning are the same kind of different.

“Yeah, it looks a whole lot different when you watch them play,” Warner said. “The bottom line is being able to react in pressure situations, be able to make the big play, whatever that looks like. Those moments are what I look at when I watch an overall game and go, ‘OK, did they change the complexion of the game?’ Both of these guys do it quite often for their teams. They just do it in different ways.”

Charean Williams, 817-390-7760 Twitter: @NFLCharean

Looking for comments?

We welcome your comments on this story, but please be civil. Do not use profanity, hate speech, threats, personal abuse or any device to draw undue attention. Our policy requires those wishing to post here to use their real identity.

Our commenting policy | Facebook commenting FAQ | Why Facebook?





Thursday, October 23Full Scoreboard
No games today
Full Scoreboard
Thursday, October 23Full Scoreboard
Indiana «88Final | Box
Charlotte79
Philadelphia103Final | Box
Detroit «109
Dallas85Final | Box
New Orleans «88
Full Scoreboard
Week 8Full Scoreboard
Thursday
San Diego21Final | Box
Denver «35Gridiron Replay
Sunday
Detroit 9:30 AM ET
Atlanta TV: FOX
Seattle 1:00 PM ET
Carolina TV: CBS
Baltimore 1:00 PM ET
Cincinnati TV: CBS
Miami 1:00 PM ET
Jacksonville TV: CBS
St. Louis 1:00 PM ET
Kansas City TV: FOX
Chicago 1:00 PM ET
New England TV: FOX
Buffalo 1:00 PM ET
NY Jets TV: CBS
Minnesota 1:00 PM ET
Tampa Bay TV: FOX
Houston 1:00 PM ET
Tennessee TV: CBS
Philadelphia 4:05 PM ET
Arizona TV: FOX
Oakland 4:25 PM ET
Cleveland TV: CBS
Indianapolis 4:25 PM ET
Pittsburgh TV: CBS
Green Bay 8:30 PM ET
New Orleans TV: NBC
Monday
Washington 8:30 PM ET
Dallas TV: ESPN
Full Scoreboard
Thursday, October 23Full Scoreboard
NY Islanders «3Final | Box
Boston2
Pittsburgh3Final(OT) | Box
Detroit «4
Vancouver «4Final | Box
St. Louis1
Chicago2Final | Box
Nashville «3
Arizona0Final | Box
Minnesota «2
Carolina0Final | Box
Calgary «5
Buffalo0Final | Box
Los Angeles «2
Columbus «5Final | Box
San Jose4
Full Scoreboard