Joe Burrow vs. Matthew Stafford: which Super Bowl LVI quarterback has a higher IQ?
Sunday’s showdown between the Los Angeles Rams and the Cincinnati Bengals has brought up comparisons between the teams’ quarterbacks, and this includes their brain power.
The excitement surrounding Super Bowl LVI has brought up comparisons between Matthew Stafford and Joe Burrow- not only regarding their performance on the field but also how they’ve done in IQ tests.
For the past few decades, prospective NFL players have been asked to take a test to measure their intelligence before they are drafted. This comes on top of their being evaluated for their physical attributes, of course.
Test for prospective NFL players
The Wonderlic test, which is similar to an IQ test, measures cognitive ability in math, vocabulary, and reasoning, as well as problem-solving aptitude. It was used by Dallas Cowboys head coach Tom Landry, who began utilizing the test in the 1970s.
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With the franchise’s success in that decade (they won 105 regular season games, a record for the NFL for that period), other teams followed suit, and it eventually became a requirement for athletes who wanted to join the league.
Wonderlic scores are supposed to be private, but the test results often find their way to the public.
In the list of players with the highest Wonderlic test scores, you’ll find the names of many quarterbacks- eight out of the top 12 are signal callers.
In fact, at number 12, you’ll find one of the protagonists of Super Bowl LVI- Matthew Stafford of the Rams chalked up a score of 38. Not bad at all for the fastest player to reach 45,000 career passing yards.
The Bengals' Joe Burrow however is not far behind. His score is above average and is only four points behind that of Stafford at 34.
However, the question of players’ intelligence as measured by these tools may no longer be a moot point in the future. The league announced in January that it will stop requiring Wonderlic tests for NFL hopefuls.