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A system quarterback is one who is perceived to be successful but not extraordinarily talented. The term was originally meant to diminish the inflated statistics of players who run spread offenses.

Essentially, it meant the players had strong numbers because they ran an effective offensive "system" rather than being extraordinarily talented.

The implication is that they can win when surrounded by strong talent, but were less of a prospect at the professional level. It is becoming less of a negative tag, as more teams use offensive systems rather than relying on a star.

The opposite of a system quarterback would be a John Elway or Dan Marino who could win a game back the strength of their arm - with or without a strong system
Examples of system quarterbacks are 1989 Heisman Trophy winner Andre Ware of Houston (46 touchdowns, 4,699 yards senior year at Houston - was a pro washout); and Colt Brennan of Hawaii - drafted by the Washington Redskins.
by Whodema April 29, 2008
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A term used by ignorant people. Every quarterback is essentially a system QB because a QB is only as talented as the people that surround them. Lets face it a Quarterback cannot magically make plays without a certain amount of protection and talented receivers.
Jim "Peyton Manning definitely isn't System Quarterback"

Dan "Jim I dislike that term but he has become so great because of the great people surrounding him like Marvin Harrison, Reggie Wayne, and a top 5 Offensive line year in and year out."
Mike "Tom Brady definitely doesn't deserve the Superbowl rings that he has, he is such a System Quarterback"

Matt " He deserves every single one. You act like a Quarterback is an entire football team , football is a team sport and Tom has always had great guys around him."

Mike "Well I can name some QB's that aren't system QB's"

Matt "Go ahead"

Mike" Well um... Peyton Manning, he could run any offense in the league if he really wanted to."

Matt " No your wrong he has never played for any other team other than the Colts so your point is irrelevant. His coaches run the Offense to his liking so he could succeed, same goes for Tom Brady, there is nothing wrong with that but very few teams can actually function that way."
by NFLFANFOREVER November 11, 2009
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A system quarterback is charged with just managing the game and not asked to do too much. Let the talent around them take over and make no mistakes.
ben rofflesburger, trent dilfer, jeff garcia, and peyton manning are all examples of system quarterbacks
by jojomojo November 18, 2007
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Quarterbacks who "won" Super Bowls (though they don't deserved to) because they benefited from being around highly taleneted teammates.
by John Madden February 23, 2005
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