Look for any list of the top 10 NFL quarterbacks from the last decade, and you will find Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers atop the list. The two players have combined for seven Super Bowl championships, five NFL Most Valuable Player awards and 23 Pro Bowl appearances.
This weekend, the two quarterbacks will meet in the NFC Championship Game, as Rodgers’ Green Bay Packers faces Brady’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Surprisingly, this will be just the fourth meeting between the two veteran signal-callers, with their chances to face each other limited prior to this season by Brady being in the AFC on the New England Patriots.
Admittedly, there are many more short track races across the country in the year than NFL games. Still, there are some of those matchups we only see on special occasions between some of the top short track racers. Here are some of the “Brady vs. Rodgers” matchups in today’s short track world.
Ty Majeski vs. Bubba Pollard
It seemed fitting to lead with this one, as Majeski calls Wisconsin home just like the Green Bay Packers. Between Majeski’s various schedule obligations with climbing the NASCAR ranks, chances to see the best of the Midwest against Pollard and the rest of the Southeast stars are few and far between.
Admittedly, this matchup was a bit of a lopsided one in 2020, not just against Pollard but against anyone. On the six occasions that Majeski and Pollard were in the same Super Late Model field in 2020 according to TheThirdTurn.com, Majeski took the checkered flag five times. Pollard won the Florida Governor’s Cup at New Smyrna Speedway, a race where Majeski completed 56 of the 200 scheduled laps.
Still, there’s no denying Pollard’s own resume, with plenty of wins over Majeski of his own over the years. Don’t be surprised if the scales level themselves out once more in 2021.
Jonathan Davenport vs. Brandon Sheppard
A pair of three-time champions in the Dirt Late Model world make up our next pairing. Davenport has won the title three times in the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series, while Sheppard has earned that distinction in the World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series.
Of course, their respective touring schedules prevent them from meeting on a weekly basis, which is part of the allure any time the Lucas Oil and Outlaw paths cross. Sheppard has competed more frequently with Lucas Oil, including a couple of full-time seasons with a best finish of fourth in points in 2016.
With that said, there are few places more important to Dirt Late Model racers than Eldora, and Davenport has the upper hand there. Both Davenport and Sheppard have a win in the Dirt Late Model Dream, but Davenport is a three-time winner in the World 100.
Doug Coby vs. Matt Hirschman
This is the kind of debate that’s likely to start a fight in the Northeast any time we bring it up. However, it’s not a matchup we see play out often on the track. Doug Coby has remained loyal and steadfast in recent years in his support of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, while “Big Money” has chased the money and taken home trophy checks from anywhere Tour-type Modifieds race.
With six titles since 2012, Coby has been the top dog on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, although Justin Bonsignore is establishing himself as a threat to that honor. However, Coby has not made his presence known at many major Modified events that fall outside of the scope of the Tour in recent years, such as the Turkey Derby, SBM 125, Race of Champions 250 or North-South Shootout.
It is those races where Hirschman has cleaned house, with six North-South Shootout wins, eight Race of Champions 250 victories, five SBM 125 triumphs and four trips to Turkey Derby victory lane. Hirschman has also won five of the seven Tri-Track Open Modified Series championships, as well as two World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing Tour-type Modified titles.
Interestingly enough, neither took top honors on one of the few common grounds between the two in recent years, the 2019 World Series at New Smyrna. Hirschman won three races, with Coby and Ryan Preece also scoring wins during the week, but Chuck Hossfeld claimed the World Series title.
-Text by Speed51 Staff