I met the other morning with a longtime friend, retired Command Sgt. Maj. Bob Whiteford. He’s a Pittsburgh native and I’m a Philly guy.

We of course spent the entire time talking sports as usual.

At one point he raved about the legacy of standout quarterbacks from the Pittsburgh area, the phone 412 area code of western Pennsylvania.

“It was interesting how many quarterbacks come from that area,” Whiteford said. “There were a ton of quarterbacks – college, pro, hall of famers.”

So being the diligent sportswriter that I am, I did some fact checking. Back in the day, I would have referred to a sports encyclopedia or my extensive collection of Sports Illustrated magazines.

But these days I went to my go-to source online, Google. I did a search on the 412 area code and quarterbacks from western Pennsylvania.

Boom. My longtime veteran buddy was right. Just look at this list of signal callers from the past:

Joe Montana

Johnny Unitas

Dan Marino

Jim Kelly

Joe Namath

Johnny Lujack

Babe Parilli

Rich Gannon

George Blanda

That’s an impressive list. I don’t know what they put in the water in Pittsburgh but they sure know how to grow quarterbacks.

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