By Eric Schmidt

Reaching the age of 30 in the NFL is a dreadful number. It’s a death sentence for many positions. On Sunday of Week Eight however, the venerable ones showed the up and coming young guns that the signal callers with some gray hair creeping in, still have a thing or two left in the tank. The NFL is always about turnover at key positions and the league has some budding superstars waiting in the wings. Russell Wilson, Cam Newton, Colin Kaepernick and Andrew Luck among others coming up the ranks. On Sunday however, the 30-something crowd proved that they are not quite ready to pass the torch as the quartet of Ben Roethlisberger, Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, and Drew Brees demonstrated there is still something left in the tank.

Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger is the youngest of the group that had a monster day on Sunday. The soon to be 33-year old threw for a franchise record 6 touchdowns while logging the fourth most passing yards in a single game with 522 yards. Big Ben out dueled Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck, one of the next up-and-coming quarterbacks destined for super stardom. Roethlisberger posted a 40-49-522-6-0 line for the day.

Drew Brees, who told reporters weeks ago that he’d like to play until he’s 45, shredded the Green Bay Packers defense in route to a 44-23 victory at home. Brees was a cool 27 of 32 for 311 yards with three scores and no interceptions.

Although there were calls for veteran New England Patriots QB Tom Brady to be benched just a few weeks ago, the 37-year old looked like an E-xacto knife on the field as he cut up the Chicago Bears defense. Brady missed on just five passes for the day finishing 30-35 for 354 yards and five touchdowns.

The eldest statesman of the group didn’t actually play on Sunday, but Thursday night. Peyton Manning, who turns 39 in March of 2015, guided the Denver Broncos to a 35-21 victory over the San Diego Chargers while throwing for 286 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions.

The group were a combined 122 of 151 for a total of 1,473 yards. They passed for 17 touchdowns and no interceptions. Not one.

All four of these Super Bowl winning quarterbacks are basically pocket passers. They are not the read-option style signal caller. They do not put their body out there to be abused by over-sized, super-fast defenders. They all have different style of play, but they illustrated this week in the NFL that pocket passing quarterbacks still win games in the NFL and they aren’t ready to pass the torch anytime soon.

 

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