• Something to Believe In?



    I've been using a new metric that seems obvious for the modern NFL, but I do not see many others using it. I like to use QB rating differential to decide if I believe in a team. It simply is the difference between the team's offensive passer rating versus passer rating allowed. I tried it out last year and it had 10 of 12 playoff teams in the top 12 with 50+% of the league's wins coming from those top 12 teams. To off-set it and possibly provide more value, I checked to see if the difference in 1st down % in offensive rushes compared to defensive rushes. While most of the playoff teams were in the top 20 there, the win distribution was almost uniform to the proper distribution of total league wins expected with two 12 team groupings and an 8 team grouping of 37.5-25-37.5.

    I do believe that yards per carry is flawed if a team is not gaining first downs with their carries and I believe that rushing the football for a ton of yards is a nice thing, but not completely necessary. So, I think the emphasis should be on running efficiently. Since the league is a passing league, I just think that passing and stopping the pass is a measure of success. Of course, one of the outliers that was not in that top 12 was the Pats, who did make the Super Bowl.

    Truthfully, I want to do this for five years before I really believe in it, but I have found it interesting so far.

    I did this last night through week seven.

    PASSING RATING DIFF- P denotes current playoff team.
    1. Green Bay
    2. Atlanta - P
    3. San Francisco - P
    4. Denver - P
    5. Houston - P
    6. Chicago - P
    7. Arizona - P
    8. Pittsburgh - They seem to be a team people think can catch Ravens now.
    9. New York N - P
    10. Philadelphia - A team who needs to stop turning the ball over. DC got fired. Offense the real problem.
    11. Washington
    12 Seattle
    ***TOP 12 accounts for approx 49% of league wins
    13. Tampa Bay
    14. Baltimore - P
    15. Minnesota - P
    16. St. Louis
    17. New York A
    18. Miami - P
    19. New England - P ---There they are, an outlier again.
    20. Dallas
    **BOTTOM 12 accounts for approx 24% of league wins
    21. Cincinnati
    22. Detroit
    23. San Diego - P Not many think this will last.
    24. Buffalo
    25. New Orleans
    26. Jacksonville
    27. Carolina
    28. Oakland
    29. Cleveland
    30. Tennessee
    31. Indianapolis
    32. Kansas City

    Now for difference in percentage of rushes resulting in first downs:
    1. San Francisco - P
    2. New England - P
    3. Miami - P
    4. Philadelphia
    5. Denver - P
    6. San Diego - P
    7. Washington
    8. Baltimore - P
    9. Kansas City
    10. Minnesota - P
    11. Carolina
    12. Tampa Bay
    ***TOP 12 accounts for ~37% of league wins
    13. Seattle
    14. New York N - P
    15. Detroit
    16. Chicago - P
    17. Green Bay
    18. Houston - P - surprised to see them here? I kind of am, too.
    19. St. Louis
    20. Dallas
    ***BOTTOM 12 accounts for ~33% of league wins
    21. New York A
    22. Arizona - P
    23. Cincinnati
    24. Oakland
    25. Jacksonville
    26. Pittsburgh
    27. Indianapolis
    28. Tennessee
    29. New Orleans
    30. Cleveland
    31. Atlanta - P - so that's why they couldn't beat the Giants, right?
    32. Buffalo

    Comments 12 Comments
    1. iwatt's Avatar
      I've been using ANYA for this as well, and do have the numbers for the last 10 years, BTW. The numbers are rounded up, because that's how PFR handles them and I haven't wanted to use more detail 6.73 and 6.71 are about the same

      1 Denver Broncos P That Manning guy is pretty good
      2 Houston Texans P seems right
      3 Pittsburgh Steelers - wow
      4 San Francisco 49ers P- having the 3rd best ANYA rank on defense helps a mediocre Offense
      5 Chicago Bears P- The best passs defense by ANYA against avery bad offense by ANYA
      6 Dallas Cowboys
      7 Detroit Lions
      8 Green Bay Packers
      9 Seattle Seahawks
      10 Minnesota Vikings P - Its about Jared Allen, niot Ponder
      11 Cincinnati Bengals
      12 Philadelphia Eagles
      13 Carolina Panthers
      14 St. Louis Rams
      15 Miami Dolphins P average on both sides of the ball by this metric.
      16 Atlanta Falcons P middling on both sides
      17 New York Giants P best passing offense helps, there pass defense has been atrocious
      18 Washington Redskins
      19 New York Jets
      20 Oakland Raiders
      21 Arizona Cardinals P .. we all know were this ship is sailing.
      22 Baltimore Ravens P .. see Arizona
      23 Cleveland Browns
      24 Indianapolis Colts
      25 San Diego Chargers P- not for long now their OL is gone.
      26 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
      27 Buffalo Bills
      28 New England Patriots P This ranking better represents how bad their defense has been.
      29 New Orleans Saints
      30 Tennessee Titans
      31 Kansas City Chiefs
      32 Jacksonville Jaguars


      The rankings are slightly different. Maybe gross YPA would work better, but I like ANYA because it takes into acount sacks, which Passer Rating doesn't
    1. Rich Gapinski's Avatar
      I hate the QBR as a measure of a player, but I think it is okay to use it for a team.

      I like how these rankings do not believe in the Chargers and may be sensing doom for Baltimore.
    1. iwatt's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Rich Gapinski View Post
      I hate the QBR as a measure of a player, but I think it is okay to use it for a team.
      Like you I don't believe in one stat. I like how this passer differential, depending on the stat used, shows different rankings for teams.

      BTW, I also use TO differential, per game (I hate volume stats), which also describes the reason why teams are were they are in the standings.

      1 Chicago Bears P
      2 Atlanta Falcons P
      3 New England Patriots P
      4 New York Giants P
      5 Houston Texans P
      6 Washington Redskins
      7 Baltimore Ravens P
      8 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
      9 Arizona Cardinals P
      10 Green Bay Packers
      11 Cleveland Browns
      11 San Francisco 49ers P
      13 Pittsburgh Steelers
      14 Jacksonville Jaguars
      14 New Orleans Saints
      14 New York Jets
      14 St. Louis Rams
      18 Minnesota Vikings P
      18 Seattle Seahawks
      20 San Diego Chargers P
      21 Oakland Raiders
      22 Denver Broncos P
      23 Miami Dolphins P
      24 Tennessee Titans
      25 Detroit Lions
      26 Buffalo Bills
      26 Cincinnati Bengals
      28 Carolina Panthers
      29 Dallas Cowboys
      30 Indianapolis Colts
      31 Philadelphia Eagles
      32 Kansas City Chiefs

      Looking at were teams rank by passer differential, and then were they rank because of TO differential, gives you a sense of why a good team (like Denver), is .500. The offense is coughing the ball up.

      Also, the demise of the Steelers has been greatly exagerated. They've lost close games, but they've had a lot of injuries. They remind me of the 2010 Packers in that sense. I Wouldn't want to face them in the playoffs. They still aren't forcing enough turnovers on defense, but that can change if they start giving some of their younger guys more playing time. It'll hurt at first, but there older players aren't dynamic enough.
    1. xmenehune's Avatar
      I use QBR as well, but just for D's, just how good is <name the team> D?
      I also use the differential between QBR O vs QBR D to rank teams within each division as this seems to hold up over the season (after about 3-5 weeks). I then have a pretty good picture of who will make playoffs.
      TO's are a bit iffy and really rank only the best D's and the weakest D's the others in between seems to be a big hodge podge each year.
    1. iwatt's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by xmenehune View Post
      I use QBR as well, but just for D's, just how good is <name the team> D?
      I also use the differential between QBR O vs QBR D to rank teams within each division as this seems to hold up over the season (after about 3-5 weeks). I then have a pretty good picture of who will make playoffs.
      TO's are a bit iffy and really rank only the best D's and the weakest D's the others in between seems to be a big hodge podge each year.
      agreed. Year to year correlations for TOs vary alot, but they do tend to explain why a team with good Passing differntials isn't as succesful as expected. It's a second order stat, if you will. I also have some efficiency stats, and look at efficiency differentials (I use points per 100 yards as a method), but you could use the inverse and obtain CHHF's bendability and scoreability.

      1 Chicago Bears
      2 Atlanta Falcons
      3 New York Giants
      4 Houston Texans
      5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
      6 Minnesota Vikings
      7 Baltimore Ravens
      8 San Francisco 49ers
      9 New England Patriots
      10 Green Bay Packers
      11 San Diego Chargers
      12 Arizona Cardinals
      13 New Orleans Saints
      14 New York Jets
      15 Seattle Seahawks
      16 Miami Dolphins
      17 Denver Broncos
      18 Cleveland Browns
      19 Washington Redskins
      20 St. Louis Rams
      21 Jacksonville Jaguars
      22 Buffalo Bills
      23 Cincinnati Bengals
      24 Carolina Panthers
      25 Tennessee Titans
      26 Pittsburgh Steelers
      27 Philadelphia Eagles
      28 Indianapolis Colts
      29 Detroit Lions
      30 Dallas Cowboys
      31 Oakland Raiders
      32 Kansas City Chiefs


      I've flireted with the idea of using only offensive scores in this measure, because for example CHicago appears extra efficient on offense (#2), but that's due to the defensive scoring. I've kept it based on total scoring to represent teams as a whole.
    1. packa7x's Avatar
      I've been using a new metric that seems obvious for the modern NFL, but I do not see many others using it. I like to use QB rating differential to decide if I believe in a team. It simply is the difference between the team's offensive passer rating versus passer rating allowed. I tried it out last year and it had 10 of 12 playoff teams in the top 12 with 50+% of the league's wins coming from those top 12 teams.
      You're very smart to use this metric...

      Many fans and analysts say that the passing game has grown in importance in recent years. But that's not true. Teams certainly pass more often today than they did in the past. But passing is not more important and the success of the Saints, Packers and Rodgers are not recent phenomena.

      The NFL has ALWAYS been dominated by teams that dominate the skies, as measured by passer rating.

      • an incredible 40 of 69* NFL champions (58 percent) since 1940 finished the year No. 1 or No. 2 in Passer Rating Differential

      • 67 of 69* champions (97 percent) since 1940 finished the year ranked in the top 10 in Passer Rating Differential.

      For a little perspective, consider that 68 of 69 champions finished in the top 10 in scoring differential. That's right. Passer rating is nearly as effective at identifying winners as points.

      The average NFL champion, for example, ranked No. 2.7 in scoring differential. They ranked 3.4 in Passer Rating Differential.

      And it's always been this way: the Bears dominated the 1940s with four NFL titles. They led the NFL in Passer Rating Differential in 1941, 1943 and 1946 and won championships each season.

      Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/201...#ixzz2ALHjOAcG
      http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/201...ing/index.html
    1. Rich Gapinski's Avatar
      Wow, thanks for that info, packa. So, I think I'm going to keep using this.
    1. Rich Gapinski's Avatar
      BIG Thanks to eDave, but here are the corresponding sheets:

    1. packa7x's Avatar
      Yeah, I actually coincidentally found this just this morning while discussing Tony Romo with a friend. I was blown away by this. It makes sense when you think about it. Your QB is efficient and the other guy's QB isn't efficient.
    1. Rich Gapinski's Avatar
      Next:

    1. packa7x's Avatar
      It makes it more interesting when you look at a game like the Giants-Redskins...The giants were -30 in QB rating, yet won the game and kept things close all game. I wonder where turnovers fit in to this. You can have a QB with a 100+ QB rating and a WR or RB can fumble and thats it.
    1. iwatt's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by packa7x View Post
      It makes it more interesting when you look at a game like the Giants-Redskins...The giants were -30 in QB rating, yet won the game and kept things close all game. I wonder where turnovers fit in to this. You can have a QB with a 100+ QB rating and a WR or RB can fumble and thats it.
      The Skins have been very lucky with the fumble recoveries. Denver has been very unlucky in the same. That is something hard to keep up. In that game, the skins fumbled 5 times, and recovered only 2 of them. 3 fumbles and 1 pick, versus 2 picks by Eli.

      I like QBR differential, but it does hide the fumbleitis. ANYA isn't better either in this regard. That -30 is a red flag though, that something else happened.
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