METAIRIE, La. — Outspoken New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan argued against Ben Roethlisberger‘s case as a future Hall of Famer on Wednesday, saying he wouldn’t rank the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback among the top five of his generation.
The Saints host Pittsburgh on Sunday.
“Is that true?” Jordan responded when a reporter suggested that Roethlisberger might be a future Hall of Famer. Then he gave an exaggerated, “Reeeaaally?”
“In this era? You’d put him at like a top three of this era? You’d put him in the top five of this era?” Jordan continued, before listing Drew Brees, Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers and Peyton Manning as top quarterbacks during Roethlisberger’s 15-year career.
“You’re saying he’s better than Philip Rivers, career-wise? So you’re giving him the Super Bowl nod?” Jordan said. “You’re putting him at No. 5? OK. … I’d honestly put Eli (Manning) before I’d put Ben, but OK. Two Super Bowls — if we’re going by those numbers.”
Roethlisberger’s Hall of Fame case is stronger than Jordan suggests. Not only does he have two Super Bowl wins and three Super Bowl appearances, but he ranks third in regular-season wins since he entered the NFL in 2004 with 143 — just one behind Brees’ 144 wins (and well behind Brady’s 171).
Roethlisberger also ranks sixth in NFL history with 55,527 passing yards (behind Brees, Peyton Manning and Favre and just barely ahead of fellow 2004 rookies Eli Manning and Rivers). Roethlisberger ranks seventh in NFL history with 359 regular-season touchdown passes (behind Peyton Manning, Brees, Brady and Rivers; just ahead of Eli Manning).
“He doesn’t vote for (the Hall of Fame) … I look at that like Twitter,” Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey said in response to Jordan’s comments. “I don’t pay attention to it. It doesn’t do anything. Come on, man. We’re grown. That his opinion. That’s totally fine.”
Pouncey also took offense to Jordan’s thoughts that Roethlisberger doesn’t rank among the five best quarterbacks of his era.
“Come on, bro. It’s crazy he feels like that. Maybe Ben has a little more emotions for it,” he said.
Jordan is never afraid to stir a little controversy, though. He often refers to specific offensive tackles as “speed bumps,” among other jabs. And he has enjoyed a well-publicized trash-talking back and forth with Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton over the past two years that hit its peak when Jordan mailed Newton a bottle of Jordan-brand wine (no relation) to celebrate the Saints’ three-game sweep of the Panthers last year.
Jordan, however, insisted that he wasn’t the one who sent Newton a broom.
ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler contributed to this report.