This week, South Florida radio show host Dan Sileo argued that Bob Griese was the best quarterback the Miami Dolphins ever had because of his two Super Bowl wins. He was reminded of another Dolphin quarterback, Dan Marino, but insisted that championship rings settle the argument.
This irked me to no end. I’m tired of Marino’s accomplishments being devalued because he never won a Super Bowl. At the same time, there is nothing more overrated in defining an athlete, than championship rings.
Winning a championship should be every player’s goal, every year, but you must remember football is a team sport. NFL teams have 53-man rosters, have 22 starters, and all players, except for a minute amount of exceptions, play either offense or defense.
The championship argument applies to basketball and baseball as well. In basketball, a single player can have a greater impact on the outcome of a season but even then, 7-time champion Robert Horry is not the best NBA player since the Boston Celtics of the 1960s. While he has more championships than Michael Jordan, leave it to fools like Sileo to argue that one.
I’ll take the following ring-less players over Horry any day: LeBron James, John Stockton, Karl Malone, Charles Barkley, Elgin Baylor, George Gervin, and Pete Maravich.
How about this list of ring-less baseball players: Barry Bonds, Ted Williams, Ty Cobb, Willie McCovey, Ernie Banks, Tony Gwynn, Rod Carew, Harmon Killebrew, and Carl Yastrzemski.
Getting back to football, I understand the importance of the quarterback position but there are many other variables. Any single player in the NFL has far less control over the outcome of a game than those in the NBA or MLB.
Is 4-time champion Steve Furness, of the Pittsburgh Steelers, the best defensive lineman of all-time? How about 3-time champion J’Rod Cherry, of the New England Patriots? He has to be amongst the best safeties in history, right? 4-time champion Mike Wilson, of the San Francisco 49ers, has to be a better receiver than Jerry Rice, correct?
Enough. This is the stupidest argument of all time. So next time someone brings up “rings” in a sports argument, just punch them in the face.
Dan Marino is the best QB, the Miami Dolphins have ever had, and he is, arguably, the best quarterback ever. I’ll take Marino over 4-time champion Terry Bradshaw, always.
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