The youngest quarterbacks to win a Super Bowl
As just a second-year professional, Cincinnati Bengals starting quarterback Joe Burrow is a superstar-in-the-making with an incredibly bright future ahead of him.
At 25 years old, however, a victory in this Sunday’s Super Bowl wouldn’t earn him the title of youngest starting quarterback to win an NFL championship. Here are the five signal callers who beat him to that honor.
5. Joe Namath, 25 years old (Super Bowl III)
The New York Jets entered Super Bowl III as 19.5-point underdogs against the Baltimore Colts. That massive number would be unusual by today’s standards, but occurred more frequently in an era with less data and betting information.
Three days before the game, the 25-year-old Namath made one of the most famous proclamations in sports history when he guaranteed a victory in the game. It seemed ludicrous at the time, but after jumping out to a 16-0 lead the Jets and Namath easily held on for a 16-7 victory. "Broadway Joe" went 17-28 for 206 yards in the big game.
4. Russell Wilson, 25 years old (Super Bowl XLVIII)
In Super Bowl XLVIII, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson was a young starter coming off a successful collegiate career at both North Carolina State and Wisconsin.
In just his second season in the league, Wilson brought the Seahawks to the Super Bowl, where they faced future Hall of Famer Peyton Manning and a Denver Broncos team that looked nearly unstoppable on offense.
Wilson got plenty of help from his extremely talented defense, but he also more than held his own offensively by going an efficient 18-25 for two touchdowns and no interceptions.
Wilson and the Seahawks jumped out to an early lead and his smart decision-making kept the game permanently out of reach for the Broncos.
3. Tom Brady, 24 years old (Super Bowl XXXVI)
A seven-time Super Bowl Champion, Tom Brady picked up his first ring in just his second year in the league with a win against the St. Louis Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI.
Brady was just a sixth-round pick and didn’t enter the league with the look of the future greatest of all time. Coming in for Drew Bledsoe, however, he took over the starting job and never looked back.
Brady led the Patriots to a memorable season at 24 years old, ultimately defeating the Rams 20-17. TB12 had lesser numbers than his counterpart in the game, Kurt Warner, but he managed to go 16-27 for one touchdown and no interceptions to ice the win.
The Patriots built a 17-3 lead in the third-quarter thanks to multiple Rams turnovers, but Warner led the Rams back to tie things up at 17 each with 1:30 left to go. That's when the legend of Brady began, as he led the Patriots down the field to get in position for an Adam Vinatieri game-winning 48-yard field goal as time expired.
2. Patrick Mahomes, 24 years old (Super Bowl LIV)
The Kansas City Chiefs arrived in Super Bowl LIV with an extremely talented young offensive corps built around starting quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who was just 24 years old at the time. A talented gunslinger from Texas Tech, he proved he was an elite player right out of the gates by leading K.C. to the NFL's championship game against the San Francisco 49ers.
The Niners got out to a 20-10 lead heading into the fourth quarter, and it appeared as though the Chiefs' powerful offense would be stifled when it mattered most. In the final half of the final quarter, however, Mahomes took over.
Mahomes guided the Chiefs to a dazzling 31-20 victory and finished the game 26-42 for 286 yards and two touchdowns. His performance helped him become the youngest Super Bowl MVP in league history at 24 years and 138 days old.
1. Ben Roethlisberger, 23 years old (Super Bowl XL)
Recently retired QB Ben Roethlisberger became the youngest quarterback to win the Super Bowl in 2006 when he led the Pittsburgh Steelers to victory in Super Bowl XL at just 23 years old.
The Steelers defeated the Seattle Seahawks 21-10 as defense and a big run by Steelers’ running back Willie Parker made the difference. "Big Ben" wasn't especially impressive, going just 9 for 21 for 123 yards and no touchdowns against two interceptions, but he redeemed himself with a second championship a few years later against the Arizona Cardinals at Super Bowl XLIII.