Every group of sports fans has had the discussion of my era versus your era, this era versus that era, and we can never truly solve that debate. What we can do is look at those that could survive in other eras. To hypothetically be able to survive in any eras you have to be an all-time great, a warrior, a player that does not run from battle, a player that does not run from battle scars, but rather embraces them, and feeds off of them.
Very few players in the history of professional sports could survive another era. The ’60s, ’70s, and even ’80s were grueling but each era has its pros and cons.
Three quarterbacks that could survive in any previous era:
Tom Brady: Brady is a warrior with seven championships, however, the championships don’t determine his survival in traveling back in time. His warrior-like mentality, team-first attitude, willingness to take less money so the team around him is better, and his never-say-die attitude put him on the list. Tom Brady has survived for over 20 years in the National Football League, not because of the tuck rule or players not being able to hit low, but rather finding nuances in the game to increase his longevity. This has helped make Brady one of the toughest physically and mentally to ever play the quarterback position.
Aaron Rodgers: Despite all of his bad body language and arrogance, Rodgers not only brings out the best in those around him but he demands excellence from those around him. Rodgers embraces facing the best of the best, he craves the competition and doesn’t back down from a challenge. With a wink at an opposing linebacker and a call out of his defensive play, Rodgers is shrewd in picking apart the defense. Rodgers is all-time great no matter where he ends up coming out of the time machine.
Matt Stafford: Stafford gets a bad rap for his inability to win in Detroit which seems unfair but is the life of a quarterback in the NFL. From day one in his NFL career, he stated that he wanted to be in Detroit to turn the franchise around as opposed to running from the rather large challenge that is fixing the Detroit Lions. Stafford has played through just about every injury imaginable, but none more prestigious and HOF worthy than (play is in the HOF Museum in Canton, Ohio) Stafford’s shoulder hanging by a thread.
After getting pulverized by a defensive lineman and setting the Lions up for one last gasp to try and win the game, the Lions called a timeout. Stafford as a rookie demanded to come back in for the final play of the game and he did as he threw the game-winning touchdown. Gutsy, gritty, and plays through everything for his teammates. Stafford isn’t the most gifted or best decision maker but he’ll fight like hell for every down, yard, and win for his team no matter the cost.