Joe Montana - The Ultimate Winner
The Ultimate Winner
So is he the greatest quarterback of all time or not? A large body of players and coaches, including [former 49ers coach Bill] Walsh, votes yes. The ones who say no point to the new era of football, the freer passing lanes, the bump-and-run restrictions, the elimination of head-slapping by defensive linemen. They say that a Johnny Unitas or a Norm Van Brocklin playing in this era would do the same things Montana does. "Yeah, I know. I've heard it," [Montana's high school quarterback coach Jeff] Petrucci says. "How would Joe do in the other era? How would he do against the Steelers in that two-deep zone, when they'd roll their corners up and it was over? Well, in my mind, he'd be the greatest in any era because he's the ultimate winner. Somehow he finds a way to get it done."
Source: Zimmerman, Paul. Sports Illustrated (August 13, 1999).