The NFL is a quarterback driven league. No player’s performance has a bigger impact on whether they make it to the Super Bowl or not. For the most part, elite signal callers tend to run the show. However, we have seen multiple game-managers find their way into the big game.
The big difference between those game-managers and the elite quarterbacks, is the ability to get back to the big game. There have been just 20 quarterbacks to make it to the final game of the season more than once. Of those 20, only 12 have made it on three separate occasions.
The numbers get even smaller when you start looking at quarterbacks that have made 4 or more starts. In fact, just 6 players can claim that accomplishment. At the top of the list is Tom Brady. He just made his 7th appearance in Super Bowl 51. The previous record was held by John Elway with 5. They are the only two with more than 4 starts in the Super Bowl.
While getting to the Super Bowl is quite an accomplishment, the thing that matters above all is wins. The most Super Bowl wins by a single quarterback is 5. An honor that belongs to none other than Tom Brady, who is re-writing the Super Bowl record books. Joe Montana (49ers) and Terry Bradshaw (Steelers) are now tied for 2nd on the list with 4. The impressive thing with Montana and Bradshaw is both went a perfect 4-0.
Of the quarterbacks who have made multiple appearances, 13 of the 20 did so in back-to-back trips. The first to do so was Bart Star back in Super Bowl I & II. The last two do so was Russell Wilson in Super Bowl XLVIII & XLIX .
The quarterback who holds the record for most consecutive trips to the Super Bowl is Jim Kelly. He led the Buffalo Bills to four straight appearances from 1991-94. Unfortunately for Kelly and the Bills, they lost all four games.
What about quarterbacks who have taken multiple teams to a Super Bowl? It’s only happened three times. The most recent was Peyton Manning. He guided both the Colts and Broncos to two different Super Bowls. The first to do so was Craig Morton. He quarterbacked the Cowboys in Super Bowl V and then later led the Broncos in Super Bowl XII. The other quarterback in this group is Kurt Warner. He made two appearances with the Rams before ending his career by taking the Cardinals to SB XLIII.
Complete List of Quarterbacks With Multiple Super Bowl Starts
|Tom Brady||7||5-2||New England Patriots||2002, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2012, 2015, 2017|
|John Elway||5||2-3||Denver Broncos||1987, 1988, 1989, 1998, 1999|
|Terry Bradshaw||4||4-0||Pittsburgh Steelers||1975, 1976, 1979, 1980|
|Joe Montana||4||4-0||San Francisco 49ers||1982, 1985, 1989, 1990|
|Roger Staubach||4||2-2||Dallas Cowboys||1972, 1976, 1978, 1979|
|Jim Kelly||4||0-4||Buffalo Bills||1991, 1992, 1993, 1994|
|Troy Aikman||3||3-0||Dallas Cowboys||1993, 1994, 1996|
|Bob Greise||3||2-1||Miami Dolphins||1972, 1973, 1974|
|Ben Roethlisberger||3||2-1||Pittsburgh Steelers||2006, 2009, 2011|
|Kurt Warner||3||1-2||St. Louis Rams (2), Arizona Cardinals||2000, 2002, 2009|
|Fran Tarkenton||3||0-3||Minnesota Vikings||1974, 1975, 1977|
|Peyton Manning||4||1-2||Indianapolis Colts (2), Denver Broncos (2)||2007, 2010, 2014, 2016|
|Bart Starr||2||2-0||Green Bay Packers||1967, 1968|
|Jim Plunkett||2||2-0||Oakland/L.A. Raiders||1981, 1984|
|Eli Manning||2||2-0||New York Giants||2008, 2012|
|Len Dawson||2||1-1||Kansas City Chiefs||1967, 1970|
|Joe Theismann||2||1-1||Washington Redskins||1983, 1984|
|Brett Favre||2||1-1||Green Bay Packers||1997, 1998|
|Craig Morton||2||0-2||Dallas Cowboys, Denver Broncos||1971, 1978|
|Russell Wilson||2||1-1||Seattle Seahawks||2014, 2015|