When people think of Tom Brady they think of a high-powered passing machine. They remember that magical 2007 campaign when Brady threw for over 4,800 yards and broke Peyton Manning's single season TD mark with 50. They remember last year when he was voted league MVP. The reality about Tom Brady is that he wasn't always this type of quarterback. I think his career can be divided into two distinct halves: the Super Bowl half and the statistical-juggernaut half.
From a purely statistical standpoint, Alex Smith is playing like the Super Bowl Tom Brady.
In 2001, 2003 and 2004 Mr. Brady lead his team to Super Bowl victories. His average season throughout those years looked like this:
61.6% comp, 3,385 yards, 25 TDs, 13 INTs, 7.2 Y/A with an 88.3 rating
If we merge the Smith's 11 games from last year with his 5 from this year to form a 16 game sample we get this:
61.3% comp, 3,335 yards, 21 TDs, 11 INTs, 7.1 Y/A with an 88.0 rating
Interesting how similar those stat lines are.
If we prorate Alex's 2011 campaign, his stats improve:
65.7% comp, 3,088 yards, 22 TDs, 3 INTs, 7.7 Y/A with a 104.1 rating
What is also interesting about this 2011 season is that aside from the Tampa Bay game, Smith's attempts per game have increased each week. This could very well increase his yardage and TD totals and he might end up closer to 4,000 yards than many people think. Obviously winning a Super Bowl comes down to much more than quarterback play. Our Niners have excellent special teams, dominating defense and a proven running game. And on the subject of quarterbacks, maybe what we were looking for was here all along.