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24 Feb 2014

LCF 2014: The Year It Means Nothing

by Aaron Schatz

Each year, Football Outsiders readers anxiously await the unveiling of our LCF projection numbers for quarterback draft prospects. LCF, of course, is the system formerly known as the Lewin Career Forecast. It's not going to be called that anymore, mostly because David Lewin is now the Director of Scouting for the Boston Celtics and General Manager of the D-League Maine Red Claws. He knows absolutely nothing about current NFL quarterback prospects and doesn't want to be asked about them anymore! So from now on, we'll call it the Long-Term Career Forecast.

The idea is the same, and it's still not a perfect system. It's far from a perfect system. It is famous for predicting that Russell Wilson was one of the strongest draft prospects ever, but last year it thought Mike Glennon was going to be a complete bust. As we often note, you always need to use common sense when analyzing a statistical projection system that doesn't incorporate everything that scouts can learn from watching film, but unexpected numbers may be telling you something.

This year, however, the LCF numbers are really telling you nothing of consequence.

There are seven elements in the FO Long-Term Career Forecast:

  • Career college games started
  • Career completion rate. Because of recent rises in completion rate across college football, this is a logarithmic variable, so that as a quarterback's completion percentage goes down, the penalty for low completion percentage gets gradually larger.
  • Difference between the quarterback's BMI and 28.0. This creates a small penalty for quarterbacks who don't exactly conform to the "ideal quarterback size."
  • For quarterbacks who come out as seniors, the difference in NCAA passer rating between their junior and senior seasons. (For quarterbacks who come out as juniors or redshirt sophomores, this variable is always 5.0, which is the average increase for the seniors in our data set.)
  • A binary variable that penalizes quarterbacks who don't play for a team in a BCS-qualifying conference.
  • Run-pass ratio in the quarterback's final college season.
  • Total rushing yards in the quarterback's final college season.

These last two variables work together to penalize both quarterbacks who scramble too often and quarterbacks who take a lot of sacks (since sacks are counted as negative runs in college), while pocket quarterbacks who are successful when they do run (Andrew Luck, for example) get a bonus. The projection number represents an estimate for passing DYAR in years 3-5 of a player's career. (DYAR, or Defense-Adjusted Yards Above Replacement, is explained here.) The system is only supposed to be used on players chosen in the first three rounds. After that, the link between college performance and NFL performance becomes too tenuous to make any kind of predictions.

And with all that introduction out of the way, here are the LCF projections for nine quarterbacks who may be chosen in the first three rounds of this year's NFL Draft:

Player School LCF
Aaron Murray Georgia 2,009
A.J. McCarron Alabama 1,551
Jimmy Garoppolo E. Illinois 1,530
Tajh Boyd Clemson 1,418
Teddy Bridgewater Louisville 1,411
Derek Carr Fresno St. 1,223
Blake Bortles UCF 1,059
Johnny Manziel Texas A&M 983
Zach Mettenberger LSU 757

One of the problem that we often have at Football Outsiders is that readers tend to overstate the importance of small differences in our stats. With the kind of sample sizes we work with, it's big differences that matter, not small ones. The difference between being ranked fifth in DVOA and ranked seventh in DVOA doesn't really matter; the difference between being ranked seventh and being ranked 23rd does. Well, with the LCF this year, the differences between the best and worst prospects hardly matter. Eight of these nine prospects are packed together with ratings ranging from average to "above average but not spectacular." The ninth prospect has a higher rating but can be busted down with a little bit of common sense.

This table makes it look like Aaron Murray is this year's best quarterback prospect, but Murray is only No. 1 in the LCF because he is the only one of this year's top prospects who started for all four years of college. His passer rating declined in his senior year, which is not a good sign, and he completed only 62.3 percent of passes during his career. And all of this is likely moot anyway because he's probably not going to end up being chosen in the first three rounds.

Early on when I first ran this, it looked like Teddy Bridgewater was actually going to end up the lowest-rated of this year's prospects, because of the BMI component. He was listed during the season at 6-foot-3, 196 pounds. He measured in at the combine at 6-foot-2, 214 pounds. That's much closer to the system's quarterback "ideal" of 28 BMI.

Instead, the lowest-rated quarterback is Zach Mettenberger, but his rating isn't even particularly low. He gets penalized for a career completion rate of just 61.8 percent, but he also improved dramatically between his junior and senior seasons. 757 is not a particularly low rating for the LCF, and it's nothing that should scare off any team that wants to use a third-round (or even late second-round) pick on him.

One thing I should note is that the system has a penalty for non-BCS quarterbacks, and I wasn't quite sure what to do about the new American Big Bag of Donuts Conference, so Bridgewater and Bortles do not have the penalty. I thought about giving them each half the penalty, in which case each would drop by about 400, but there still wouldn't be that much difference between the second- and ninth-ranked prospects of 2014, and there especially wouldn't be a big difference between the three guys who are competing for the right to be the No. 1 pick and become the chip on Jadeveon Clowney's shoulder. What's important here is that none of these guys are getting red flags from the LCF. There are no Mark Sanchezes who are going to fool scouts because they lack college experience, and no Kyle Bollers who can't hit the broad side of a barn.

And so, the official position of Football Outsiders regarding the 2014 LCF is that this year the LCF doesn't mean anything. Figuring out the difference between Bridgewater, Manziel, and Bortles is all up to the scouts. Good luck in the NFL to all these kids, and otherwise we have nothing much to say.

Posted by: Aaron Schatz on 24 Feb 2014

53 comments, Last at 04 Mar 2014, 6:41am by MC2

Comments

1
by CBPodge :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 5:44pm

Well I have to say... er... nothing much? Please can you hide this information from NFL GMs, just in case they use it as a reason not to give up a ridiculous bounty of draft picks to trade up with the Rams? And replace it with a SACKSEER projection that just says "Jadaveon Clowney is God" and nothing else?

No? Fine.

2
by jacobk :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 6:41pm

It seems to me that this actually does suggest Murray is being overlooked a bit. I don't quite understand the caveat that "Murray is only No. 1 in the LCF because he is the only one of this year's top prospects who started for all four years of college." Isn't that part of the system because the results over time have shown that starting for all four years in college is an important indicator of success?

If starts don't correlate with success then they shouldn't be in the system (or should be toned down, I guess) but if they do then that kind of statement seems analogous to "they only have a high DVOA because they scored a touchdown on every possession."

14
by MC2 :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:44am

Yeah, this seems like another case of Wilsonesque bet-hedging. If Murray turns out to be a steal, they can say, "Well, the LCF projected him as well ahead of the other guys", but if he struggles, they can say, "Well, we told you that this year's forecast was meaningless."

In other words, it's "Heads I win, tails we tie."

17
by Sifter :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 6:24am

Yes it's an odd little article really. Almost a 'don't bother reading this' vibe, since the results are close together, and yet I'm sure that's what Aaron would have wanted, otherwise he would need to insert asterisks everywhere and do even MORE bet hedging.

My thoughts:
*Mike Glennon is hardly a system breaker, he's much closer to his LCF than Geno Smith or EJ Manual at this point.
*Go Dave Lewin, onward and upward!
*non-BCS adjustments...are we at the stage now with some of the advanced college stats where actual opponent adjustments can be done? Have zero knowledge on the subject, just curious.
*Brett Smith of Wyoming, have heard his name mentioned in draft circles. What is his forecast?

Thanks for putting it up Aaron anyway, always interesting to see what it spits out.

19
by Dr. Mooch :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 8:29am

No, the explanation for why that's in the system isn't that a long tenure as a starter is an indicator for success. Rather, the thinking is more that scouts are more accurate when they have more tape to work with. A more accurate opinion, combined with a decision to pick the player in the first three rounds, which is an a priori for LCF, you've got a stronger statistical indicator.

21
by killwer :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 10:13am

This makes no sense. The reason why career starts is in is that it has a significant corralation with NFL success. This is seperate from scouting, so if starts didnt corralated with NFL success it wouldnt be in the model.

22
by tuluse :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 10:43am

Correlation does not imply causation.

Scouts are better at doing their jobs with a lot of games started to watch.

27
by commissionerleaf :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:06pm

No, no, no.

Or rather, yes, yes, yes, but that's not the point. The point is that compared to the scouts watching game tape, the player's own coaches have a drastically higher sample size. If they guy earned a starting job and kept it four years, that's an indication that he looks good in practice, shows up to meetings, watches tape, and does all the other things that correlate with success but aren't on game tape.

30
by tuluse :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:38pm

That doesn't explain the difference between a 3 year starter who leaves early and a 4 starter.

35
by Dr. Mooch :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 4:18pm

No, it doesn't. In my history of reading about LCF I don't think it's ever been credibly suggested that number of starts is a proxy for any of those "intangibles."

The reason is because of what LCF actually does - it's not actually a statistic about whether a QB will be good. Rather, it's a statistic about whether a drafting team correctly guessed that a QB will be good and then chose to use a top draft pick on him.

This is because LCF was built on retrospective data for QBs picked in the first two rounds. In the data games started was, and has continued to be, the most important factor in predicting success among those top picks. A good description of LCF says pretty plainly that number of games started is the most important predictor of whether a scout guess successfully about a player's potential. Number of games started is actually not a good indicator of the player's potential itself.

36
by Dr. Mooch :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 4:22pm

I should point out that this hypothesis is amenable to statistical testing, if anyone wanted to get in there and do it. Draft position should be predictive of player success, and if my description of LCF is true then there should be an interaction effect between draft position and games started, in which draft position is a stronger predictor of player success for players with lots of games started and a weaker predictor of player success for players with fewer games started.

3
by Will Allen :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 6:50pm

I was not impressed with the way Bortles threw at all, in the on game I observed him. I also like Bridgewater a lot better eighteen pounds heavier than his listed college weight. For all the comparisons of Manziel to Wilson, I don't think Manziel throws the ball as well, nor do I think he runs an offense as well. Of course, he's played three fewer years in college than Wilson, so it isn't crazy to think that if he was playing college college ball in the fall of 2016, he'd surpass how impressive Wilson was.

McCcarron to me is the epitome of a guy who benefits in college from playing vastly less talented opponents' compared to his teammates, on a regular basis.

15
by MC2 :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:46am

I don't watch much college football these days, but based on the NFL performances of their respective alumni, I would not say that the other SEC schools are "vastly less talented" than Alabama.

16
by Will Allen :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:53am

During the course of McCarron's career, it has been unusual for Alabama's opponent to match up reasonably well with Alabama

26
by Rick_and_Roll :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:02pm

I think Manziel has a comparable arm and is probably a better runner than Wilson. What separates these two is that Wilson has Roger Staubach like leadership and composure, verses Manziel who is talented and competitive while on the field but not dedicated off of it. I'd take Wilson over him every day if the week.

McCarron reminds me of Brian Griese. Good college QB with some talent who plays on a great team.

4
by RickD :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 6:58pm

"Eight of these nine prospects are packed together with ratings ranging from average to "above average but not spectacular."

It might have been useful at some point to give the reader an idea of what the typical range for these numbers is. To my eyes, McCarron's LCF is twice as high as Mettenberger's. Why is that not important?

Give us some context. What was Russell Wilson's LCF? Andrew Luck's RG3's?

6
by ChrisS :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 7:20pm

I am thinking the difference is not that much different than the standard error of the forecast. The LCF is equal to total DYAR for 3 years. So the difference of 750 is really a difference between an average annual DYAR of 500 and 250 with an expected variation of, I am guessing, maybe 200. So they are almost in the same range, both expected to be a bit above average. For 2013 A.Dalton had a DYAR of 550 and S.Bradford had a DYAR of 300. RG3's LCF was 2500, Luck's was 1750 Tannehill was 725
http://www.footballoutsiders.com/nfl-draft/2012/lewin-career-forecast-20...

10
by mehllageman56 :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 10:03pm

Geno Smith had a LCF of 2064, EJ Manuel's was 1270, and Landry Jones, the second asterisk, had a whopping 2276. Mike Glennon had -379, and he had the best rookie year of all of them.

5
by BJR :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 7:07pm

Hmmm. I know next to nothing about college football so have zero opinion on any of these guys. And I totally get that this system alone is not a good way of ranking the prospects and it has to be taken in context. But what exactly is the value of the metric if we are simply going to disregard the player it projects best (by some reasonable margin)? Either it is useful or it isn't and if it isn't then surely we are best to always ignore it.

18
by CBPodge :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 7:08am

I think the reasoning is that basically, the metric should factor out the guys who aren't actually pro prospects, but put up good college numbers largely (it is thought) as a product of their system. The idea is that the NFL factors those guys out from scouting, which is something that the metric can't really factor in. Hence you have the "only applies to guys drafted in the first three rounds" caveat. And Murray is unlikely to go there due to injury and probably size concerns.

29
by BJR :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:30pm

So the system is relevant, unless the scouts decide it isn't? I still don't understand the point.

32
by Noah of Arkadia :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:51pm

The caveat is that the forecast works best after the players are run through the filter of scouting to eliminate the obvious players who perform well but aren't NFL prospect for any reason whatsoever that is hard to put into numbers. Like a ridiculous college system, hopeless mechanics or "enjoys punching old ladies in his free time".

I'm not sure I'm adding anything meaningful to what Podge said, but that's all there is to it.

------
The man with no sig

7
by Karl Cuba :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 8:15pm

Hmmm, this might make me have another look at McCarron but he screams of Ken Dorsey to me.

I wonder if the final two factors (concerned with running) are too big a knock on Manziel. He had plenty of games on college with more than twenty carries and if he does that in the pros he will be obliterated but if expect that to be reduced as it was for Kaepernick. My issue with him is that his hips lead his arm, which reduces his accuracy when throwing to his right hand side. However, I don't see it as a major problem as it's just the inverse of most qbs, who struggle to throw to their left.

I like the Non-Lewin Career Forecast but I do prefer actually watching the players:)

8
by Will Allen :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 9:33pm

Who knows? Maybe if Manziel had stayed in college through the 2015 season, we'd have a better handle on how well he could efficiently extend a play with his legs, meaning finding the receiver who had broken off and lost coverage. That's what really stuck out for me in Wilson's year at Wisconsin, which I saw every game of.

I think if Manziel gets the right coaching, he could be well above average. I also think he could be an epic bust. It ain't a lot of fun rolling the dice with a guy who's played only about 26 games in college.

20
by Sakic :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 10:11am

He screamed Gino Torretta to me...but yeah, Ken Dorsey works as well.

9
by mehllageman56 :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 9:55pm

I was curious about David Fale's LCF, since he might get picked before the fourth round. Also, the fact that there are 7 guys with an LCF above 1,000, and that's not even including Johnny Football, tells me that this is a deep draft for quarterbacks.

11
by Chip :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 11:23pm

But Aaron, you disowned that projection when it came out with phrases like "ridiculous" and "absurd".

Taking a victory lap now?

Wilson was listed under he asterisks section, with quotes like "I'd be remiss if I didn't point out the ridiculous projection of Wilson." And "Wilson will probably be drafted onday three, which will render his absurdly high LCF moot".

Rather than crowing about Wilson, I'd point out the models overall strength. The rank order of prospects is fairly remarkable. The big three (RGIII, AL, RW) in a similar stratosphere. Foles and Cousins in the next tier. And so on.

12
by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Mon, 02/24/2014 - 11:43pm

I don't know what article you read, but "It's far from a perfect system. It is famous for predicting that Russell Wilson was one of the strongest draft prospects ever, but last year it thought Mike Glennon was going to be a complete bust" does not sound like taking a victory lap or crowing to me. If anything, Aaron is downplaying the significance of the Wilson projection.

13
by RickD :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 12:38am

Aaron is only downplaying the importance of the Wilson projection now because he called it "ridiculous" 2 years ago. He thought Wilson would last to at least the fourth round.

It's a classic case of ignoring what the numbers say because they don't fit your preconceptions. And today's article says that eight QBs are "essentially the same" even when there's a wide range between their numbers.

Oh well.

31
by Noah of Arkadia :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:44pm

It was a preconception, true, but he didn't edit the numbers to make them fit into it. So we have the numbers and we have the interpretation, same as we always do. The fact that Aaron didn't buy into Wilson's LCF doesn't make it any less of a victory for the system.

------
The man with no sig

41
by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 11:38pm

I think it was the right call for Aaron to hedge on the Wilson projection, even though it turned out to be right. LCF is not perfect and has had some high profile misses (Matt Leinart, Jason Campbell, and Kevin Kolb come to mind). There were legitimate concerns about what Wilson's numbers meant when he transferred schools between his junior and senior years and due to his height. The fact that the projection turned out to be accurate doesn't mean those concerns weren't real. If anything, Aaron's job in interpreting the LCF results should be to point out when he thinks the numbers shouldn't be taken at face value.

That said, I think he draws the wrong conclusion from this year's results. The lesson is not that LCF has nothing to teach us about this year's crop. LCF sees basically no value in taking one of these guys before another, which means that the lesson is you can get good value at QB in the 5-8 range, so don't trade up (the opposite of 2012 when LCF came out in favor of the Redskins in the RG3 trade because the drop off was so huge from Luck and Griffin to everyone else, excepting Russell).

23
by mehllageman56 :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 10:44am

Aaron, if anyone could post David Fale's and Brett Smith's LCFs, I would much appreciate it. Both of them might go in the third round, and are thus somewhat relevant. Thanks, and great article as always.

24
by CBPodge :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 12:29pm

Have you ever looked at whether there's a correlation between the accuracy of LCF and the draft position of a player (even if you include LCF for all drafted QBs)? I imagine that low down the draft there are likely to be quite a few guys who have terrible LCFs that they never get the chance to plumb the depths of (due to not ever playing), and a few with bizarrely good ones that also never actually play (because they are system products). Would just be interesting to see if you can sort of say that there's a tendency for LCF projections to be more accurate for highly drafted QBs (say top 5 picks), moderately highly drafted (1st rounders outside the top five) and later round picks?

Anecdotally it seems less accurate the lower down the draft you get, but equally there are hits with later drafted guys (like Wilson). Think it might be something interesting to look at.

25
by jacobk :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:02pm

I think the danger is that if you go too far with that kind of reasoning you wind up with a model that says "guys who are drafted earlier are usually better" which, while true, is not helpful in projecting where a guy ought to be drafted.

40
by CBPodge :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 5:24pm

Not necessarily. For example, off the top of my head, Stafford had an average LCF (lower than reality), Bradford had a goodish one (about right!), Jamarcus had a terrible one, Luck and Griffin both had excellent ones (one dead on, one potentially not).

It's not necessarily measuring the actual LCF compared to draft position, but the accuracy of the LCF compared to draft position. For example, I seem to remember Colt McCoy having a great LCF and being horribly mediocre. Just think it would be interesting to see how much deviation there is between LCF and reality, and if there's any correlation between draft position and accuracy of the LCF (not between the size of the LCF and draft position). And if you ended up with a position that says "better players are drafted higher", well that's good news for LCF!

I just think it'd be easier to look at a projection like Aaron Murray and say "yeah, but most guys picked in the 3rd/4th round are only within 3 standard deviations of their LCF" (or something, I don't know whether that is the right measure!), rather than getting into a "Colt McCoy had a great LCF and sucked"/"Russell Wilson had a great LCF and does not suck" argument.

37
by Dr. Mooch :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 4:24pm

See comments 35 and 36.

28
by JoRo :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 1:19pm

Aaron, when disputing what the findings for the LCF are this year I think you forget it is a career long forecast. Glennon may still prove to be a total bust, as he had a relatively decent rookie year, nothing more. I'm sure players doing that then falling off a cliff aren't unheard of in the data.

33
by FrontRunningPhinsFan :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 2:05pm

Having watched nearly every UCF game last season, I definitely think Bortles and Bridgewater should get the non-BCS penalty. Most of the teams they played were just not very good.

34
by formido :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 2:19pm

I don't think these rankings mean nothing at all. I think playing QB for 4 years in college is a fantastic indicator. If you look at who the best QBs in the NFL have been over the last 10-15 years, 4 year starters are well over represented even though talented underclassmen defect constantly. I'd say the LCF is telling you that these guys are probably never going to be elite QBs in the NFL.

38
by Duff Soviet Union :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 4:40pm

With the new CBA and capped salaries for rookies, more and more players are leaving early which was always going to happen. This is going to screw up the LCF. I think pretty soon it will be like basketball, where instead of a "4 year college starter" being a good thing, you'll be asking "if this guy is any good, then why is he still in college?".

39
by speedegg :: Tue, 02/25/2014 - 4:42pm

I would take this to mean,"There are no Andrew Lucks in this draft", meaning a team like the Texans could pass on a QB for superior talent in Round 1. On the flip side, you have several average to above-average QBs that could be successful depending on team, a good QB coach, and situation.

A bunch of scouts have been saying(on the internet) there are several things to like about each prospect, a few red flags, but no one characteristic that blows you away (i.e. bet your job on).

Greg Cosell made some interesting comments about Manziel about "knowing his own offense" and structured play; for Bortles he is a comfortable pocket QB, but not a special talent or special thrower. Cosell always says what he says is taken out of context, so look up his QB review on the internet. Very interesting.

42
by mehllageman56 :: Wed, 02/26/2014 - 12:53am

None of them have a better LCF than Geno Smith, which surprises me, since I was assuming Bridgewater would do well in it. I would also argue that Bridgewater's red flags are a lot more minor than everyone else's; he can bulk up from 215 pounds, and Brady has been an elite quarterback with mediocre to poor deep ball accuracy. Bortles has issues with his footwork and delivery, which are much more serious problems. By the way, Aaron Murray has a higher LCF than Andrew Luck, and he is going to be drafted after the third round because of his injury, not his play on the field. It's quite possible that he ends up being a star, like Wilson did; Tony Dungy said he would have drafted him ahead of everyone else last year.

46
by speedegg :: Fri, 02/28/2014 - 3:19pm

I think the QB Class of 2012 raised the standard to an unrealistically high level. There is no one QB in this class that jumps out based on his ability. LCF 2014 suggests this year's class can be good, but in conjunction with scouting it suggest league average.

Bridgewater's concern aren't minor. This year, near the end of the season, his playing weight was down to 188 lbs. It's good to know he can bulk up, but the question is can he keep the weight on (he's a skinny guy) and can he take a pounding. His style of play doesn't lend to taking hits, but at the NFL level he will have to throw with bodies around him and will take hits. If he's taken in the first round, their will be pressure to play him.

Bortles has the most potential, but would need some time on the bench. He doesn't have a great arm (cannon), he is an ok thrower, but I heard some compare him to Fales from SJSU.

Aaron Murray is one of those guys that make you go hmmmmm, Andy Dalton 2.0. His LCF score is encouraging, Murray makes good decisions, gets the ball out quickly, and has an extra inch on Dalton, but is a similar player. Murray isn't Drew Brees. There are a few scouts that say Murray is a career back-up based on his play. Maybe if he gets stronger.

47
by MC2 :: Sat, 03/01/2014 - 1:07am

I've seen more of Murray than any of the other guys (although still not a lot, as I just don't watch much college football these days), and he's definitely not the next Drew Brees, but I don't think he's the next Andy Dalton, either.

The guy he reminds me of is Chad Pennington. He's a bit smaller than Pennington, but he has at least as much arm strength as even the pre-injury Pennington did, but where he really reminds me of Pennington is his decision-making, which is top-notch, and his accuracy, which is very underrated.

People point to Murray's "low" completion percentage as proof that he lacks accuracy, but remember, Murray played in a pro-style offense, and therefore didn't get the chance to pad his completion percentage with a lot of the really short throws that are so common in many of the offenses these days. I think completing 63% in a pro-style offense is every bit as impressive as completing 70% in an offense where many of the throws you're asked to make are basically long handoffs.

48
by tuluse :: Sat, 03/01/2014 - 1:18am

On the other hand you have QBs like Luck who completed 70% of their passes in a pro style offense.

On the other other hand, being less impressive than Andrew Luck can still be impressive.

49
by MC2 :: Sat, 03/01/2014 - 7:31am

Agreed, on both points.

I highly doubt he'll be as good as Luck, but he could still be a steal if he falls past the 2nd or 3rd round.

50
by speedegg :: Sat, 03/01/2014 - 8:12pm

Ross Tucker (former NFL lineman and now Sirius XM NFL announcer) and Greg Cosell (senior producer at NFL Films) talked about rookie QBs. Cosell has an interesting take on Bortles, Manziel, and Bridgewater. He also goes into good detail about the strengths and weaknesses of each.

I believe this is the latest radio spot by Cosell on QBs this year.

Link: http://rosstucker.com/podcasts.html

51
by MC2 :: Sun, 03/02/2014 - 6:00am

Thanks for the link. As usual, Cosell provides a lot of food for thought.

52
by Will Allen :: Mon, 03/03/2014 - 9:50pm

It is amazing what happens when somebody sits down and watches every throw a guy made in college, isn't it? A talking head can then actually become worth listening to!

53
by MC2 :: Tue, 03/04/2014 - 6:41am

Yeah, I wish more of the ex-players would spend a little time watching film, instead of providing "analysis" that consists of little more than an endless string of cliches.

43
by mehllageman56 :: Wed, 02/26/2014 - 1:22am

Let me quote a paragraph from the 2012 Lewin article:
'With that in mind, let's look at the projections for this year's quarterbacks. These numbers represent an estimate for passing DYAR in years 3-5 of a player's career. The top prospects will be above 1,200 DYAR, and you should avoid quarterbacks below zero.'

While everyone is claiming this year's totals mean little, take a look who scored above 1,200 DYAR in this years forecast, and compare that with earlier years. Aaron Murray, A.J. McCarron, Jimmy Garoppolo, Tahj Boyd, Teddy Bridgewater and Derek Carr all score above the 1,200 mark. Here is a list of everyone who scored above that mark in the previous years I could find:

2013- Geno Smith, Matt Barkley, Ryan Nassib, E.J. Manuel, Landry Jones
2012- RGII, Andrew Luck, Nick Foles, Kirk Cousins, Russell Wilson
2011- Andy Dalton, Ricky Stanzi
2009/2010- Colt McCoy, Josh Freeman, Sam Bradford

By the way, Colin Kaepernick scored a 1044 in the 2011 LCF, getting dinged for a 58% completion rate. So the Lewin Forecast formula changed in 2011; the 2009/2010 results are from the 2011 article. That article also printed the revised top ten list using LCF 2.0, with scores ranging from Philip Rivers' 2476 to Matt Ryan's 1403. The list goes: Rivers, Brees, Carson Palmer, Peyton Manning, Chad Pennington, Brady Quinn, Jason Campbell, Jay Cutler, Chad Henne and Matt Ryan.
To sum up, more quarterbacks reached the 1,200 DYAR level this year than in any year since LCF started. The last two years have seen five prospects reach this level, but only five prospects reached this level for the total of the years 2009 to 2011. This is a pretty good year to draft a quarterback, especially since next year will probably be Marcus Mariota and that's it.

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by Aaron Schatz :: Wed, 02/26/2014 - 10:56am

Also, Brett Hundley. Not just Mariota.

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by justanothersteve :: Wed, 02/26/2014 - 11:06am

And Bryce Petty. Possibly Jameis Winston.