Editor’s note: As part of NFL’s Greatest Quarterback, fans will decide the best QB in each team’s history.
Dutch Clark: Clark was a charter member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1963. He led the Lions to an NFL Championship in 1935. Clark was a six-time All-Pro during his seven-year career in Detroit.
Clark, like the NFL in general at the time, wasn’t known for his passing. He accumulated 2,772 yards and 36 touchdowns on the ground and 1,507 yards, 11 touchdowns and 26 interceptions through the air.
Bobby Layne: When Layne retired, he was the NFL career leader in passing yards, touchdowns, attempts and completions. He led the Lions to back-to-back NFL Championships in 1953 and 1954.
Layne was a five-time Pro Bowler and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1967. After Layne was traded during the 1958 season, he reportedly said the Lions would not win for another 50 years. Since that time, the Lions are one of two NFL teams that have not made the Super Bowl. The Lions are 1-10 in the playoffs since trading Layne. The proclamation is known as “The Curse of Bobby Layne.”
Greg Landry: The Nashua, N.H., native was drafted No. 11 overall out of UMass in 1968. He was an All-Pro after his best season as a pro in 1971. He threw for 2,237 yards, 16 touchdowns and 13 interceptions.
Landry led the Lions to a 40-41-3 record during his 11-year career with Detroit. Landry is fourth on the Lions’ career passing list.
Gary Danielson: Danielson may be better known as CBS’s SEC color analyst now, but once upon a time the Purdue product was a pretty good NFL quarterback. Danielson started out in the World Football League after going undrafted in 1974. He entered the NFL in 1976 and took over as Detroit’s starter in 1978.
Danielson went 23-28-1 in his eight years with the Lions. His best season came in 1980 when he led Detroit to a 9-7 record while throwing for 3,223 yards, 13 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.