7 Greatest Individual Seasons By an NFL Quarterback

We've had some great quarterbacks come and go over the years, and with them, some great performances. Here's a glimpse of what happens when supreme artistry meets elite talent. I think they call that genius on the football field.


7. Dan Marino, 1984

Dan Marino was a quarterback ahead of his time. From 1983 until 1999, Marino led the Dolphins to 10 playoff berths and only had  one losing season in his 17 years at the helm for the Dolphins. 


The 1984 season, however, would proved to be something special. That year, Marino became the first quarterback to ever throw for over 5,000 yards in a season (this was just his second year in the pros). His mark of 5,084 yards would stand for nearly 30 years before it was surpassed. He also threw for a record 48 TD's en route to leading Miami to a 14-2 record and a Super Bowl appearance. Though the Dolphins would ultimately fall to the 49ers in the big dance, Marino's performance throughout the year was enough to grant him league MVP in just his second season in the league.

6. Joe Montana, 1989

Joe Montana is universally recognized as one of the league's Top 3 quarterbacks of all-time, and it's seasons like the one he put on display in 1989 that depict exactly why that's the case. In 1989, the Niners were coming off of their third Super Bowl victory in eight years, and Montana was riding high at the top of his game. 


The Niners went on to defend their title and win their fourth championship in '89 behind the league MVP, Montana, who totaled 26 touchdowns, 3,521 yards, and just eight interceptions through 13 regular season games. He'd top of his phenomenal year with a 55-10 shellacking over John Elway in the Super Bowl, cementing the 49ers dynasty.

5. Aaron Rodgers, 2011

He's a baaaad man. Aaron Rodgers' 2011 campaign is often forgotten because how the team fizzled out in the postseason, but through the first 15 games of the regular season (Rodgers sat out of the finale), Rodgers led the Packers to a league-best 14-1 record and looked as though he had his team in position to repeat as champions. 


En route to winning league MVP honors, Rodgers threw for 4,643 yards, 45 touchdowns, and only six interceptions. He'd also contributed 257 yards on the ground, and three rushing TD's. Had the Packers had any postseason success, this season might be higher on the list, but Green Bay was halted in the Divisional Round to eventual Super Bowl champion New York Giants.

4. Tom Brady, 2007

Tom Terrific is still chugging along in the NFL at the age of 40, but a decade prior, he led one of the most prolific offenses the NFL has ever seen. In 2007, Brady in tandem with Randy Moss broke record after record en route to an 18-1 season that would likely rank No.1 on this list if he and the Pats were able to finish the job.


Even still, in '07 Brady collected an MVP trophy, and threw for, what was at the time, a record-setting 50 touchdown passes. With that, the New England great totaled 4,806 yards through the air with just eight interceptions. This may not have been the year Brady looks back one with the most fond memories, but it was still one of his most impressive campaigns of his career.

3. Peyton Manning, 2013

Like Brady, Manning's 2013 season would easily rank atop this list if he and the Broncos were able to get the job done in Super Bowl XLVIII. Brady broke all the records in '07, and then Manning came along and one-upped him six years later.


Most of us remember how remarkable Manning's year was, but here are his numbers: 55 touchdown passes (single-season record), 5,477 yards passing (single-season record), with just 10 interceptions. Manning won league MVP this year and led Denver to a 13-3 regular season. If not for those pesky Seahawks, this season would be looked at very differently in the annals of NFL history.

2. Kurt Warner, 1999

In 1999, Kurt Warner was on a mission to prove he was good enough to play QB in the NFL. Today, the thought that it was ever even a question sounds ridiculous for the 2017 Hall-of-Fame inductee.


'99 was Warner's first full season under center for the St. Louis Rams, and in year No.1 he led the Greatest Show on Turf. Warner was the league MVP in '99 and threw for 4,353 yards with 41 touchdown passes and led the Rams to a 13-3 regular season. Of course, the thing that's remembered most about the Rams storybook season was the ending, as Kevin Dyson was stopped on the one-yard line, granting Warner and the Rams their first ever Super Bowl .

1. Steve Young, 1994

Steve Young was everything to the San Francisco 49ers in 1994. This was Young's fourth season at the helm, and the first since Montana's departure that the Niners would make a run at the Super Bowl.


Young won league MVP honors after throwing for 3,969 yards and 35 touchdown passes in the regular season. He'd also add 293 yards on the ground to those totals and a TEAM-HIGH seven rushing touchdowns. The Super Bowl was the last straw on Young's impeccable season, as he led the Niners to a 49-26 win over the San Diego Chargers in a contest in which he was the leading passer (325 yards and 6 passing touchdowns) and the game's leading rusher. Young won SB MVP honors as no one else was even in the discussion.

TOP ARTICLES