The search for the greatest ginger quarterback of all time

04.21.11 6 years ago 65 Comments

TCU quarterback Andy Dalton’s red hair is hurting his draft stock in the eyes of at least one NFL team. In the latest issue of SI, Peter King quotes Rex Ryan an unnamed coach:

“Has there ever been a red-headed quarterback in the NFL who’s really done well?” a coach asked one reporter last week. “It sounds idiotic, but is there any way that could be a factor? We’ve wondered.”

At first this was just an amusing anecdote confirming the widely-held suspicion that the draft evaluation process is less than a science. But even as we laughed it off internally at KSK, we wondered: who was the best ginger quarterback to play in the NFL?

As a preliminary matter we had difficulty naming ANY ginger quarterback who didn’t completely suck (thus ruling out Jason Garrett and one of those guys who played for the Giants before Eli, Kent Brown/Dave Graham or whoTFever…) Jeff Garcia’s name was bandied about for a bit. At last, I threw my support behind Bengal qb Carson Palmer. But then the debate took a left turn and devolved into whether or not Palmer was even a ginger.

A Google search revealed there’s ample authority supporting what I had heretofore thought was an unconteroverted issue. Palmer’s detractors on the internet—and they are legion—seem to be aware of his ginger status. But some of my cohorts were having none of it. “I’m sorry, but [red] beards so don’t count,” Drew wrote, “Ask every dipshit out there with Irish blood who has brown hair and a reddish goatee.”

However, these photos of Palmer all seem to make a solid case for his gingerness:

What do you think: is Palmer a ginger?
Are there anyone we’re missing?
What about Sad Brad Johnson? Was/is he a ginger?

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