FanPost

Points Per Pass Metric, Results Through Week Eight

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 80 pass attempts.

Now that we're almost at the halfway point of the season, the list is becoming quite stable, with just three notable movements this week.  Jeff Garcia to this point had avoided throwing any interceptions, but he had a really poor game Sunday, with three picks.  His value drops by almost a tenth of a point per pass, and tumbles from second to fourth place.  Both McNabb and Favre had excellent games this weekend, and now have passed our main man Romo in the standings.  This Sunday will see the matchup of the top two quarterbacks against each other, as well as McNabb (sixth) face Romo (eighth).  I'm very eager to see how Romo plays in his first game ever in Philadelphia.

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                                     0.78
Manning, Ind                                0.65
Garrard, Jax                                 0.61
Garcia, TB                                     0.60
Delhomme, Car                            0.54
McNabb, Phi                                 0.53
Favre, GB                                     0.52
Romo, Dal                                    0.51
Anderson, Cle                              0.51
Hasselbeck, Sea                          0.50
Palmer, Cin                                  0.48
Warner, Ari                                  0.45
Roethlisberger, Pit                       0.45
Harrington, Atl                             0.44
Cutler, Den                                  0.42
Schaub, Hou                                0.41
McNair, Bal                                   0.40
Rivers, SD                                    0.40
Boller, Bal                                    0.40
Kitna, Det                                    0.38
Huard, KC                                    0.37
Brees, NO                                    0.36
Pennington, NYJ                           0.36
Holcomb, Min                               0.36
Manning, NYG                              0.34
Campbell, Was                            0.33
Leinart, Ari                                   0.33
Green, Mia                                   0.31
Carr, Car                                      0.30
Edwards, Buf                               0.30
Smith, SF                                     0.30
Lemon, Mia                                  0.28
Bulger, StL                                   0.27
Griese, Chi                                   0.26
Jackson, Min                                0.22
Culpepper, Oak                           0.21
Young, Ten                                  0.17
Grossman, Chi                             0.09
Frerotte, StL                               -0.03
Dilfer, SF                                     -0.11

Another user-created commentary provided by a BTB reader.

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