NFL observers are in a unique historical vantage point.
History is being made every week from the perspective of the unwinnable argument of which is the best NFL quarterback of all time.
In two key metrics, total yards passing and passing touchdowns, the top three are Peyton Manning, Drew Brees and Tom Brady.
Brees and Brady are still playing.
Manning heads the list with 539 career touchdown passes, but Brady trails by just 12 and will likely, assuming he stays fit, pass Manning before the end of the season, well before, in fact.
Brees is just five behind Brady and while he is out temporarily with a thumb injury to his throwing hand, he will be back soon and he is a touchdown-throwing machine when he is fit, while Brady is more the steady, game-management type.
For total regular season passing yards, Brees is on top by nearly 3,000 yards over Manning.
Brady will pass Manning the next time the Patriots take the field, as he trails Manning by just 17 yards.
Where the tables tip, however, is when the post-season playoff games are included in the total, revealing the benefit Brady has derived from playing his entire career with a consistently winning club.
Brady currently has 83,102 for his yardage total for regular season and playoff games, while Brees is almost 4,000 yards back. Manning does not enter the conversation, as he retired following the Denver Broncos’ win in Super Bowl 50.
Brees is two years younger than Brady is, so he might have as many as 32 regular season games in hand if he continues to play and Brady should call time, but there are no indications that Brady will leave the field any way other than feet first.
At any rate, strong arguments could be made that both Brees and Brady represent the best to have played the quarterback position and before they are done, will establish marks that future quarterbacks will need generations to equal.