Passing First Downs: Career Rankings

Yesterday I detailed the best and worst QB seasons as measured by first down percentage. Today’s post will reveal how these signal callers stack up over the course of their careers. I chose to exclude any QB who totaled at least 100 dropbacks in any season prior to 1991, because incomplete data can often be worse than no data at all. From there, I’m including QB’s who took a significant numbers of snaps in at least two seasons (a  judgment call). This gives us a…

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Passing First Downs: Best and Worst Seasons

I’m a huge fan of using first downs to measure quarterback performance. Despite ignoring yards, touchdowns, and interceptions, the simple operation of dividing passing 1D by dropbacks does a terrific job of telling us how well a QB has played. Like all statistics, passing 1D% has its flaws, but in my opinion it harbors less distortion than any other simple input passing stat. I place 1D% slightly ahead of NY/A in terms of relevance for making solid evaluations, and miles ahead of everything else. Setting…

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A Brief Essay on the Legendary Marcus Allen

Born March 26, 1960 in San Diego, California, Marcus Allen knew from a young age he was a special talent. During neighborhood football games, he was always several steps ahead of everyone else. He preferred playing defensive back and aspired to be like his hero Lem Barney, but he also spent time in his backyard trying to emulate the running style of Browns legend Leroy Kelly. That time paid dividends when Abraham Lincoln High School coaches Vic Player and Roy Reed decided to make Allen…

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Adjusted Points Per Drive 2016

Last year, I created a metric for measuring offensive efficiency called Adjusted Points Per Drive (AdjPPD). Today I’ll be updating the numbers for 2016. If you aren’t familiar with AdjPPD, I strongly encourage you to read the full explanation here. Overview When measured on a per-drive basis, 2016 was the highest scoring season in the last twenty years, and probably in the history of the NFL (drive stats only go back to 1997, so we can’t be absolutely certain). After adjusting for field position, the average…

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2016 Defense Adjusted Quarterback Stats

With the 2016 regular season in the books, I thought it might be interesting to look at some of our homegrown quarterback stats. Normally, I would present Total Adjusted Yards per Play (TAY/P) and New Total Adjusted Yards per Play (NTAY/P)1 and leave it at that. However, we have made those stats available all year and wouldn’t be giving you anything new by going the traditional route. Instead, I’d like to present those metrics with adjustments to account for the defenses quarterbacks have faced. This way, we…

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Greatest QB of All-Time: Conventional Wisdom

There are countless iterations of the quarterback GOAT ranking scattered all over the internet. As far as I’m aware, every one of these lists has been compiled from the perspective of the person creating it; in other words, it’s just their opinion. In today’s post, I’m going to tackle this from a different angle. Instead of telling you who I believe the greatest quarterbacks of all-time are, I wanted to find a consensus on the beliefs of the entirety of football fandom. Of course this…

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Realigning the NFL

I’ll begin my tenure at GridFe with a relatively light-hearted topic, but it’s a topic that I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time thinking about: NFL division alignments and schedules. I am not a fan of the current setup consisting of eight divisions of four teams each. With so few teams in each division, it drastically increases the likelihood of imbalance, and as we’ve witnessed a few times, that imbalance can be extreme. I’m appalled at the yearly occurrence of a mediocre team receiving a…

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History of the Career Rushing Yards Record

Seemingly every offseason for the last half decade, Adrian Peterson has made slow-news-day headlines by reiterating his goal of breaking Emmitt Smith‘s career rushing yards record. Normally, this notion would be dismissed. However, given Peterson’s production to date, in concert with his remarkable physical conditioning and recovery ability, his words hold more weight than those of other backs.1 While Peterson’s goal pops up in the news every now and then, the history of the record itself is rarely covered. We’ll see an offhand remark about…

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Regular Season QBGOAT XIV: Cascaded Soft Inflation Adjustment

This is the fourteenth and final installment in the series on the most statistically dominant regular season quarterbacks in NFL history. If you’ve been following along, I appreciate it; if not, you may want to check it out from the beginning. Today we’ll be looking at career stats with a cascaded soft inflation adjustment. If you’re not familiar, cascaded is the term I use to describe the act of giving 100% credit to a player’s best season, 96% to his second best season, 92% to…

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Regular Season QBGOAT XIII: Cascaded Hard Inflation Adjustment

Welcome to part thirteen in the regular season QB GOAT series. In this post, we’ll look at quarterback careers through the lens of Total Adjusted Yards relative to the rest of the league, given a cascaded hard inflation adjustment.1 With the hard inflation adjustment, you’re going to see some leaps in the rankings from older players that might seem shocking. Otto Graham, Fran Tarkenton, Sammy Baugh, Sid Luckman, and Johnny Unitas all make considerable jumps when we account for the evolution of quarterback usage rates. This…

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