FanPost

Points Per Pass Metric, Results Through Week Seven

My passing offense metric, updated with last week's results. See below an explanation of the statistical details:  It's the same text I've posted in previous weeks.  The only difference is the minimum cutoff for making the list is 70 pass attempts.

With the exception of Tom Brady's mind-boggling game against the Dolphins, the pack continues to settle towards the historic league average value of 0.32.  Romo's conventional stats looked exceptional, and they were, but the three sacks and most importantly, two fumbles, hurt his numbers this week.  On the other hand, one can take plenty of encouragement from Sunday's game.  He faced a defense similar to what he faced in Buffalo, and this time, he recognized the situation and was effective.  There's a certain irony with the situation.  After Romo had such outstanding success in his first five games, then became mediocre the remainder of last season, the conventional wisdom was that the league had "figured him out".  The implication was that he was a flash in the pan for a few games, that his early success didn't really matter, and that he wouldn't last in the NFL.  He's got seven more games under his belt this season, with only one real stinker (Buffalo) on his resume.  And after last week, he showed he's learning to recognize defenses, adjust and has success.  Rather than the league figuring him out, he's showing he's able to figure out the league.

Although their teams lost, Gerrard and Garcia still have not thrown an interception this season.

McNabb's numbers continue to creep upwards.  Despite all the drama in Philadelphia, his value is basically the same as Romo's, and Derek Anderson.

Here's the intro I've posted on previous weeks:

I've been using a passing offense metric for many years now to gauge how well a QB is doing.  Inspired by baseball SABRmetrician Bill James, I performed linear regressions of NFL statistics and concluded from a big picture point of view, only two statistics mattered:  Yards gained from scrimmage, and turnovers.  The best fit to matching points scored came when assuming the following coefficients:

Ten yards gained from scrimmage = +1.0 points; and
One turnover lost = -6.0 points.

Simply put, teams that score points rack up yardage and don't commit turnovers.  Note how powerful turnovers are:  A team can, for example, gain 55 yards of offense, but if they turn it over the next play, they actually ended up hurting their team.

With that in mind, I created the points per pass metric, which calculates the effectiveness of quarterbacks.  The above two coefficients are used to determine, on average, how many points a quarterback (and his offensive teammates, since everyone else contributes to his success or failure) creates with each passing attempt.  It takes the simple yards per attempt metric we're all familiar with, adjusts it for sacks, and further adjusts it for turnovers.  One interception equates to minus six points; one fumble equates to minus three points.  I treat fumbles as half a turnover, since there's essentially a 50/50 chance of recovering or losing a fumble.  The results will probably be unsurprising for the most part, but sometimes they can appear odd.  One of the things that may cause these oddities are fumbles.  Most people, when looking over a QB's stat line, don't think about fumbles; they just look at yardage, attempts, touchdowns, interceptions, and maybe sacks.  But fumbles are very important, since they are essentially half a turnover.

Brady, NE                                     0.79
Garcia, TB                                     0.69
Manning, Ind                                0.65
Garrard, Jax                                 0.61
Delhomme, Car                            0.54
Romo, Dal                                    0.51
Anderson, Cle                              0.51
Hasselbeck, Sea                          0.50
McNabb, Phi                                 0.48
Schaub, Hou                                0.47
Favre, GB                                     0.46
Palmer, Cin                                  0.46
Warner, Ari                                  0.45
Harrington, Atl                             0.44
Roethlisberger, Pit                       0.42
McNair, Bal                                   0.40
Boller, Bal                                     0.40
Cutler, Den                                  0.39
Campbell, Was                            0.39
Huard, KC                                    0.37
Griese, Chi                                   0.37
Pennington, NYJ                          0.37
Manning, NYG                              0.37
Rivers, SD                                    0.36
Kitna, Det                                    0.34
Leinart, Ari                                   0.33
Culpepper, Oak                           0.32
Green, Mia                                   0.31
Edwards, Buf                               0.30
Lemon, Mia                                  0.28
Smith, SF                                     0.28
Brees, NO                                    0.28
Jackson, Min                                0.22
Young, Ten                                  0.19
Bulger, StL                                  0.19
Grossman, Chi                            0.09
Frerotte, StL                              -0.04
Dilfer, SF                                    -0.11

Another user-created commentary provided by a BTB reader.

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