I figured we could all use a break from the Plaxico Burress mania that has taken over our lives in the past few days so I thought we'd go in a different direction today, back to what's happening on the field.
I decided to take a closer look at the age of quarterbacks who have started in the Super Bowl during the last decade.
This topic obviously has local interest after Donovan McNabb played great on Thanksgiving night in the Eagles' win over the Cardinals. Can McNabb play at that level consistently at this point in his career? Is he good enough to lead a team to the Super Bowl? Those are the questions that the Eagles' front office will have to answer, and most fans have already formed their opinions.
I took a look at quarterbacks who have started in the Super Bowl, dating back to 1999, and here are the numbers:
29.1 -- The average age of quarterbacks who have started in the Super Bowl since 1999. To get the average, I used the players' age at the time of the Super Bowl in which they played.
28.5 -- The average age of the winning quarterback.
29.7 -- The average age of the losing quarterback.
38.58 -- John Elway's age when he started the Super Bowl for the Broncos in 1999. Elway is the oldest quarterback to have won or started a Super Bowl in the last decade.
23.92 -- Ben Roethlisberger's age when he started the Super Bowl for the Steelers in 2006. Roethlisberger is the youngest quarterback to have won or started a Super Bowl in the last decade.
3 - Number of quarterbacks 30 or older who have won a Super Bowl in the last decade (30 percent).
8 - Number of quarterbacks 30 or older who have started a Super Bowl in the last decade (40 percent).
McNabb turned 32 last week. Hypothetically, if he were to lead the Eagles to Tampa this year, McNabb would be the fifth-oldest quarterback to start a Super Bowl in the last decade -- behind Brad Johnson, who was 34 with the Bucs in 2003; Rich Gannon, who was 37 with the Raiders in 2003; Elway, who was 38 with the Broncos in 1999; and Chris Chandler, who was 33 with the Falcons in 1999.
Interestingly enough, the numbers change when looking at just the past five years. The average age of a quarterback starting in the Super Bowl drops to 27.6. And no quarterback has been 31 or older. If McNabb were to get to the Super Bowl this year or even next year, he would be the oldest quarterback to reach the championship since 2003.
So there are the numbers. What do you think?