Top 10 Greatest Backup Quarterback Seasons in NFL History


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10. Kerry Collins

Tennessee Titans, 2008

Kerry Collins had himself a pretty successful career, but by the time he got to Tennessee, it was widely assumed that he’d spend the rest of his career on the sidelines. He had brought the Carolina Panthers to the NFC Championship in 1996, helped the Giants to a Super Bowl appearance and was nearing 30,000 passing yards in his career. When the Titans traded Steve McNair and subsequently drafted Vince Young in 2006, Collins was meant to be the bridge starter until Young was ready. An 0-3 start forced Tennessee’s hand and Young took the starting job. Young went on to be the Rookie of the Year in 2006 and the Titans made it to the postseason in 2007. Expectations were high entering the 2008 season.

In Week 1, Vince Young was injured against Jacksonville and eventually got booed by the fans at LP Field. Allegations had even came out that week that Young had attempted to commit suicide. Whatever the truth was, it was apparent Young was having a very hard time and Collins was named the starter for the rest of the 2008 season. The Titans responded by going on a 10-0 start and finished first in the NFL at 13-3, which is the franchise’s best regular season to date. Collins’ numbers were modest, but effective, with 2,676 yards, 12 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. His job was to manage games and yield to the team’s running attack and stout defense which he did to near perfection. The Titans eventually would lose their first playoff game, a 13-10 loss to Baltimore but what Collins was able to do was truly special.