Mike Shanahan spoke very highly of his quarterback on Thursday and his comments are raising some eyebrows.
“I don’t think anybody in the history of the league has played at his level,” Shanahan said. “At least over the last 40 years, when I take a look at the numbers and what he has done, I don’t think anybody has played at his level.”
That, of course, is a very subjective statement. Note that Shanahan did not limit his statement to rookies or young players. The operate phrase was “anybody in the history of the league”.
One way to take the subjectivity out of the statement is to apply numbers to it. Let’s take Griffin’s passer rating (104.1), yards per pass attempt (8.3), and rushing yards (752). In NFL history, no player with at least 350 pass attempts has that high a passer rating, that many yards per attempt and that many yards rushing in a single season.
Even if you lower the threshold for rushing yards to 500 you get Griffin 2012 and Steve Young 1992.
This doesn’t “prove” Shanahan’s statement by any means. But it does show that it’s not necessarily all that outrageous a statement.