14.  Ken Anderson
Bill Walsh’s West Coast Offense is very popular now, but despite the geographic name, it was actually executed first in Cincinnati by Ken Anderson.

Ken Anderson was a lifetime Bengal who set passing records for the franchise.  He was incredibly accurate and mastered the short yardage pass.  On four occasions he led the league in Quarterback Rating and in 1982 he set a season record (which he still holds) with a 70.6 highest completion percentage.  He did make it to the Super Bowl and though his Bengals lost he was still brilliant in defeat.

Anderson had the misfortune of playing at a time of flashy quarterbacks and despite his skills he did not receive his due.  As he has only been a finalist twice this remains to be the case.  Considering that Anderson did not have the weapons that the bigger name QBs of his era had, his stats are actually more impressive than at first glance.

The Bullet Points:

Country of Origin:
Batavia, Illinois, U.S.A.

Eligible Since:


Played for:
Cincinnati Bengals


3rd Round, 67th Overall in 1971

Major Accolades and Awards:
NFL Most Valuable Player (1) (1981)
NFL Offensive Player of the Year (1) (1981)
NFL Comeback Player of the Year (1) (1981)
Pro Bowl Selections (4) (1975, 1976, 1981 &, 1982)
First Team All Pro Selection (1) (1981)
Second Team All Pro Selection (2) (1974 & 1975)
Most Completions (2) (1974 & 1982)
Most Passing Yards (2) (1974 & 1975)
Most Passing Yards/Game (1) (1974)
Highest Quarterback Rating (4) (1974, 1975, 1981 & 1982)
Highest Pass Completion Percentage (3) (1974, 1982 & 1983)

Other Points of Note:
Top Ten Finishes: Passes Completed (8) (1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1981 & 1982)
Top Ten Finishes: Passes Attempted (7) (1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1981 & 1982)
Top Ten Finishes: Passing Yards (7) (1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1981 & 1982)
Top Ten Finishes: Passing Touchdowns (5) (1973, 1974, 1975, 1976 & 1981)
Top Ten Finishes: Passing Rating (9) (1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1979, 1981 & 1982)
Top Ten Finishes: Passing Yard/Game (7) (1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1978, 1981 & 1982)
Top Ten Finishes: Pass Completion Percentage (9) (1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983 & 1984)

Notable All Time Rankings:
25.  Passing Yards: 32,838
27.  Passes Completed: 2,654
28.  Passes Attempted: 4,475
32.  Passing Touchdowns: 197
38.  Quarterback Rating: 81.9

Years Nominated for the Hall of Fame:
Finalist: 1996 & 1998

Should Ken Anderson be in the Hall of Fame?

(You must be registered and logged in to vote!)
Definitely put him in! - 50%
Maybe, but others deserve it first. - 16.7%
Probably not, but it wouldn't be the end of the world. - 22.2%
No opinion. - 0%
No way! - 11.1%
Last modified on Sunday, 08 March 2015 02:46


0 #4 cka2nd . 2015-08-09 17:41
jimmy26, none of the quarterbacks that you named have a better case than Anderson to be in the Hall. Stabler and Anderson are about even (see my response to Mr. Vercelli). Simms and Theismann only made two Pro Bowls and Plunkett none. Super Bowl championships only go so far and I don't think Simms, Theismann or Plunkett are even close to Hall status.
0 #3 cka2nd . 2015-08-09 17:37
Mr. Vercelli, no, Anderson wasn't the "only reason" the Bengals went to the playoffs four times. The 1975 and 1876 teams had Top 10 defenses, very good offensive lines and Isaac Curtis. The 1981 and 1982 teams had Pete Johnson, Chris Collinsworh, Dan Ross and very good OL's anchored by Anthony Munoz. To me, Anderson and Ken Stabler are both borderline cases. Four Pro Bowls and one First Team All-Star team apiece, Anderson with the longevity and overall better stats, Stabler with the playoff performances and Super Bowl ring. I will say that I think they were both better than Troy Aikman.
0 #2 Steve Vercelli 2015-06-15 22:54
A travesty that Anderson is not in the HOF. THE most underrated in history. Because he doesn't have a "ring" (like Tarkenton, Kelly, Fouts, Moon and others), he WAS the ONLY reason why the Bengals went to the playoffs 4 times. Griselda, Bradshaw, Montana, Aikman were surrounded by HOF members on both sides of the ball. Anderson had Anthony Munoz.
-3 #1 jimmy26 -0001-11-30 00:00
The way I look at ken Anderson is that he was a very good quarterback on very solid teams that could not get over the hump. I think there are two or three more deserving quarterbacks (Stabler, Theisman, Simms n mayb even Plunkett) that deserve recogntion before he goes in. With that in mind I cannot put him this high on the list!

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