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12 Nov 2013

Week 10 Quick Reads

by Vince Verhei

Let's get right to the point: Week 10 in the NFL, from a Quick Reads perspective, was awfully boring. Look, the bar for statistical performance has been set pretty high this season. It seems like every week there's another quarterback throwing for seven touchdowns or a wide receiver having an all-time great game. This week though, there's just not that much to get excited about. Drew Brees was by far the league's best passer, but his performance wasn't one of the five best games for a quarterback this year. The running backs table isn't very fun unless you live in Louisiana. And the best receiver this week caught a whopping two passes.

So, since there's not much to celebrate in Week 10, we're going to look at the season as a whole, and point out which players are having historically extreme campaigns. Take Peyton Manning, for example. Though he's cooled down somewhat after his cartoonishly great start, he still leads the league with 1,455 DYAR in nine games played. (This number, like all others discussed in this article, was calculated before the Monday Night Football game.) That puts him on pace for 2,587 DYAR over 16 games, and that would be the second-best season in our records going back to 1989. Tom Brady's record of 2,674 DYAR is the best season we've ever analyzed, but that record is still a realistic goal if Manning can return to his September form. Brees (1,142 DYAR) is also on pace for a top-ten all-time season, and Philip Rivers (1,027) could also make that list before all is said and done.

Believe it or not, Manning's passing DVOA (44.7%) is no longer the best in the league. That honor, by the slimmest of margins, belongs to Philadelphia's Nick Foles (44.8%). Those marks are well, well short of the all-time record (Wade Wilson's 62.3% with Atlanta in 1992), and even if we raise the minimum from 100 passes to 200, then Manning's 2004 campaign (58.9%) still looks untouchable. There are so many good quarterbacks these days that it's hard to stand out from the pack.

Unless, of course, you're a bad quarterback — then you stand out like a festering boil. The two most prominent boils this year have been Terrelle Pryor and Blaine Gabbert. Pryor was last among quarterbacks in DYAR this week, the second week in a row he's been in last place, and his season-total passing DYAR (-444) has now passed Gabbert (-407) for the worst total this season. Assuming Pryor plays 15 games (he has missed one start this year) at that pace, he would finish with -833 DYAR. That would be right in the middle of the worst passing seasons of all time, although David Carr's -1,130-DYAR campaign with the Texans in 2002 seems safe.

Gabbert has (deservedly) lost his starting job with Jacksonville to Chad Henne, so it's impossible to predict where he'll finish in DYAR. That doesn't mean, though, that he won't make some bad history. Gabbert currently has a -80.4% passing DVOA on 98 pass plays. (And that includes a hefty opponent adjustment for throwing 35 passes with six sacks against Kansas City — his VOA is an even more dreadful -93.0%.) If he can get two more passes this year without any improvement, he'll be only the third quarterback to dip below -80.0% in 100 pass plays in DVOA history. And if those two pass plays are, say, a pair of interceptions, he could fall below Alex Smith's -88.6% DVOA in 2005 and claim the worst DVOA of all time.

Surprisingly, no wideouts in the league are close to the single-season top ten in DYAR. The top receiver, Jordy Nelson, has 258 DYAR, nowhere near the 508 needed to make the top 10, and certainly not close to Michael Irvin's record of 591 DYAR in 1995. Kenny Britt (-91 DYAR) and Jason Avant (-84) both have outside shots of making the bottom 10 receivers list, though neither is a threat to Chris Chambers' all-time worst -294 DYAR in 2006.

There some outliers among wideouts in DVOA, though. Jerricho Cotchery has a DVOA of 54.8%, which would be the second-best of all time behind Dennis Northcutt's 60.5% in 2002. Kenny Stills (47.6%) and Eddie Royal (42.7%) are also shooting for the top ten. Ace Sanders (-43.8%), Avant (-32.5%), and T.J. Graham (-30.9%) are all challenging for the bottom 10, including the all-time worst mark of -59.3% by Tony Jones in 1991.

Speaking of receivers, Jimmy Graham (223 DYAR) should finish comfortably among the top ten tight ends, if not come within shouting distance of Rob Gronkowski's 459 DYAR in 2011. The only other player who might make the list is Julius Thomas (150 DYAR). Graham isn't the best tight end this season according to DVOA, though. That honor would go to Jeff Cumberland of the New York Jets (56.7%), which would be the third-best for a player at that position on record. No tight ends this season are close to the bottom ten in DYAR or DVOA.

Finally, we have the running backs, where it's a bad season all around. Depending on which metric you prefer, the top rushers so far have been either Marshawn Lynch (166 DYAR) or Stevan Ridley (17.4%), neither of whom is anywhere near the top ten in those categories. Darren Sproles (170 DYAR) could make the top ten as a receiver.

The most historic season (and not in a good way) belongs to Ray Rice, who is last in the league in both rushing DYAR (-126) and DVOA (-36.0%). He's just barely behind pace to pass Jonathan Wells (-241 DYAR in 2002), and ahead of Harold Green (-29.5% DVOA in 1993), to finish with the worst season on record in either category. (Yes, the expansion Houston Texans of 2002 had the worst passer and the worst rusher we've ever seen.) Willis McGahee (-98 DYAR, -29.6% DVOA) could also find himself among the bottom ten.

As if challenging for the worst rushing season all time isn't enough, Rice also has -51 DYAR receiving, second-worst in the league, and headed for the list of worst seasons on record. The worst receiver among running backs this year, though, has been Houston's Ben Tate (-78 DYAR). At that rate, he'll break Dave Meggett's -114 DYAR in 1992 as the worst receiver at that position in Football Outsiders history.

Quarterbacks
Rk
Player
Team
CP/AT
Yds
TD
INT
Total
DYAR
Pass
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
1.
Drew Brees NO
34/41
392
4
0
248
248
0
Third downs: 9-of-9 for 138 yards with two touchdowns and five other first downs. His only failed third-down plays were an 8-yard gain on third-and-10 and a 5-yard gain on third-and-15.
2.
Russell Wilson SEA
19/26
287
2
0
129
120
9
Throwing to his left, Wilson went 8-of-10 for 150 yards, with two touchdowns and five other first downs.
3.
Christian Ponder MIN
17/21
174
2
1
103
114
-12
On Washington's half of the field, Ponder — Christian Ponder! — went 9-of-10 for 95 yards with two touchdowns and four other first downs.
4.
Robert Griffin WAS
24/36
281
3
0
87
76
11
First half: 16-of-20 for 179 yards with two touchdowns and eight other first downs, plus a 7-yard DPI. At one point, he picked up two touchdowns and four first downs on six straight throws. Second half: 8-of-16 for 102 yards and only five first downs, plus four sacks.
5.
Nick Foles PHI
12/18
228
3
0
83
61
23
Foles had a good day overall, but a lousy day on third downs. In seven dropbacks, he only completed two passes, both for first downs, for 33 total yards. Otherwise, he had two incompletions and was sacked three times, with one fumble.
6.
Peyton Manning DEN
25/36
330
4
0
82
82
0
Manning struggled on third downs too, going 3-of-7 for just 18 yards with a sack. All three of those completions picked up a new set of downs. But still.
7.
Ryan Fitzpatrick TEN
22/33
264
2
0
76
66
10
Fitzpatrick, on the other hand, killed it on third downs, going 7-of-9 for 100 yards with two touchdowns, five other first downs, and one sack-fumble. It helped that six of those plays came with 5 yards or less to go for a first down; Fitzpatrick converted all of them.
8.
Kellen Clemens STL
9/16
247
2
0
76
95
-19
First and second downs: 2-of-7 for 18 yards with one first down and two sacks. Third downs, for 229 yards, with two touchdowns and four other first downs.
9.
Carson Palmer ARI
20/32
241
2
1
65
65
0
Palmer had big problems in short yardage. In seven plays with 5 yards or less to go for a first down, he had one completion for 12 yards, five incompletions, and an interception.
10.
Ryan Tannehill MIA
27/42
229
2
1
57
55
2
11.
Matthew Stafford DET
18/35
219
3
1
56
72
-16
Red zone passing: 3-of-5 for 23 yards with three touchdowns.
12.
Matt Ryan ATL
23/36
172
1
0
55
50
5
Ryan's fourth-down touchdown in the third quarter, which cut Seattle's lead to 16, was the first time all game that he completed a pass for a first down in Seattle's territory. On that side of the field, he finished up 5-of-9 for 15 yards with one touchdown, one other first down, two completions that lost yards, and one sack.
Rk
Player
Team
CP/AT
Yds
TD
INT
Total
DYAR
Pass
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
13.
Case Keenum HOU
23/43
201
3
0
49
45
4
The Texans had a third-and-3 in the third quarter, down by 3 points at their own 42-yard line. Keenum was then sacked for a 23-yard loss. That's 5 yards longer than any other sack this season.
14.
Mike Glennon TB
11/21
139
1
1
30
29
1
15.
Philip Rivers SD
19/29
218
1
0
25
27
-1
Rivers had eight dropbacks with more than 10 yards to go for a first down. He had one sack and two incompletions, but he also completed four passes for 57 yards, plus an 8-yard DPI, for four total conversions.
16.
Josh McCown CHI
6/9
62
1
0
24
24
0
McCown only played on one drive at the end of the game. His biggest plays were a 12-yard gain on third-and-13, a 14-yard gain on the ensuing fourth down, and an 11-yard touchdown on third down that came within a two-point conversion of tying the game.
17.
Jay Cutler CHI
22/40
264
1
1
13
13
0
It sure looks like Cutler was hurt by the end of the game. On his last four drives, he went 6-of-13 for only 38 yards and one first down.
18.
Scott Tolzien GB
24/39
280
1
2
6
-3
9
Red zone passing: 3-of-10 for 12 yards with no first downs and one interception.
19.
Ben Roethlisberger PIT
18/30
204
1
1
-29
-29
0
Third-down passing: 5-of-9 for 82 yards and four first downs, plus four sacks.
20.
Tony Romo DAL
11/24
128
1
0
-46
-46
0
Romo did not complete a pass for a first down until the Cowboys were down by 18 points in the third quarter. On third downs — Dallas fans might want to sit down — he went 0-for-6 with two sacks.
21.
Chad Henne JAC
14/23
180
0
2
-50
-50
0
Jordan Todman's 5-yard touchdown run in the third quarter put Jacksonville up 20-7. From that point forward, Henne went 3-of-9 for 34 yards with one first down, one interception, and one sack.
22.
Cam Newton CAR
16/32
169
0
1
-66
-46
-20
On San Francisco's side of the field, Newton went 5-of-11 for 39 yards with two first downs and two sacks. He had no plays in the red zone, perhaps because his only two plays inside the 40 were both sacks. He ran six times for 18 yards, with one first down and one fumble.
Rk
Player
Team
CP/AT
Yds
TD
INT
Total
DYAR
Pass
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
23.
Eli Manning NYG
12/22
140
1
1
-76
-76
0
From last week's Quick Reads: [Nick] Foles completed 7-of-9 deep balls against Oakland for 241 yards and three touchdowns. He threw one other pass that went exactly 15 yards downfield. It was caught in the end zone for another touchdown. Playing against that same secondary, Manning threw only two deep balls, completing one for 25 yards.
24.
Jake Locker TEN
4/9
24
0
1
-76
-84
8
In limited time, Locker ran only one play in Jacksonville territory. It was a fumbled snap, recovered by the Jaguars.
25.
Andrew Luck IND
29/47
353
1
3
-85
-83
-3
Third downs: 2-of-7 for 74 yards (both for first downs) with an interception, two sacks, and a fumble that was returned by St. Louis for a touchdown.
26.
Joe Flacco BAL
20/36
140
2
2
-98
-96
-1
In the first quarter, Flacco went 4-of-7 for 37 yards with a touchdown and two other first downs, plus a 48-yard DPI. He actually led all quarterbacks this week in first-quarter DYAR, but was dead last from that point forward.
27.
Colin Kaepernick SF
11/22
91
0
1
-98
-94
-4
Kaepernick had twice as many sacks (six) as first downs (three). He also officially had a 6-yard loss on a running play.
28.
Andy Dalton CIN
24/50
274
2
3
-120
-132
12
Two weird plays broken down: the Hail Mary touchdown that forced overtime was worth 43 DYAR. The completion for an 11-yard loss on fourth-and-2 on Cincinnati's last play was worth -20. In the first half, he went 8-of-21 for 47 yards with three first downs and an interception.
29.
Terrelle Pryor OAK
12/26
122
0
1
-121
-130
9
Third-down passing: 2-of-9 for 29 yards with one first down, two sacks, one fumble, and one interception.
30.
E.J. Manuel BUF
23/39
155
1
1
-127
-138
10
Manuel spent a lot of time throwing ineffectively to his right, going 8-of-15 for 38 yards with two first downs and an interception.


Five most valuable running backs
Rk
Player
Team
Rush
Yds
Rush
TD
Rec
Yds
Rec
TD
Total
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Rec
DYAR
1.
Mark Ingram NO
145
1
15
0
59
60
-1
Ingram only had 14 carries on Sunday night, but six of them went for 10 yards or more, including two of 30 or more. He finished with one touchdown and seven other first downs, and failed to gain positive yardage only once. The Saints threw him three passes, and he caught two of them.
2.
Marshawn Lynch SEA
145
1
16
0
58
54
3
Lynch had four 10-yard runs, including a 37-yarder, and four other first downs, including a 1-yard touchdown on third down. Meanwhile, he was stuffed for no gain or a loss just once in 24 carries. He caught each of the three passes thrown his way, including a 9-yard gain on third-and-four.
3.
Darren Sproles NO
12
1
76
1
48
8
40
Sproles only had five carries, but one was a 3-yard touchdown on third down. He caught each of the seven passes thrown his way, with a 28-yard touchdown and three gains of exactly 11 yards.
4.
Pierre Thomas NO
87
1
24
1
44
40
4
Three running backs from one team in Quick Reads. That is almost certainly a first. A model of consistency, Thomas' longest run gained only 10 yards, but 12 of his 17 carries gained 5 yards or more, and he had a touchdown and five other first downs. He caught each of the seven passes thrown his way, but only two gained successful yardage, one a 1-yard touchdown on third-and-goal.
5.
Alfred Morris WAS
139
0
0
0
43
43
0
Four of Morris' 26 runs went for 10 yards or more, including a 26-yarder, and he finished with seven first downs on the ground, with only two stuffs for no gain or a loss.


Least valuable running back
Rk
Player
Team
Rush
Yds
Rush
TD
Rec
Yds
Rec
TD
Total
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Rec
DYAR
1.
Matt Forte CHI
33
0
16
0
-54
-20
-34
A model of consistency, though not in a good way. Ten of his 17 carries gained 2 yards or less, none went for more than 7 yards, and he had only one first down. He only had three receptions in seven targets, and all three of those receptions were failed catches on third down. Ray Rice, by the way, finished right behind Forte. His 18 carries gained only 30 yards and no first downs, with a long carry of 5 yards. In fact, he had only one successful run on the day: a 3-yard gain on first-and-5. Six of those carries were stuffed for no gain or a loss. He caught all six of the passes thrown his way, but that includes an 11-yard gain on third-and-21, a 2-yard gain on third-and-11, and a 4-yard loss on second-and-1.


Five most valuable wide receivers and tight ends
Rk
Player
Team
Rec
Att
Yds
Avg
TD
Total
DYAR
1.
Tavon Austin STL
2
3
138
69.0
2
60
If you follow me on Twitter, you know I've been very harsh on Austin through the first half of his rookie campaign. He had been one of the worst receivers in the league, and one of the worst punt returners we've seen since the merger. Well, forget that. He had touchdown receptions of 57 and 81 yards (both on third down), and his DYAR does not account for his 98-yard touchdown on a punt return. For one week, he shut me the hell up.
2.
Marques Colston NO
7
8
107
15.3
1
59
Each of Colston's receptions gained at least 6 yards and a touchdown, including three gains of 20 yards or more and a pair of third-down conversions.
3.
Rishard Matthews MIA
11
14
120
10.9
2
57
4.
Demaryius Thomas DEN
7
10
108
15.4
3
55
Each of Thomas' receptions gained at least 7 yards and a first down, including touchdowns of 34, 28, and 11 yards.
5.
Brandon Marshall CHI
7
12
139
19.9
2
54
Six of Marshall's receptions gained a first down, including touchdowns of 32 and 11 yards and a 44-yard gain on second-and-10.


Least valuable wide receiver or tight end
Rk
Player
Team
Rec
Att
Yds
Avg
TD
Total
DYAR
1.
Victor Cruz NYG
3
10
37
12.3
0
-45
All of Cruz's receptions gained a first down too. There just weren't very many of them.

Posted by: Vince Verhei on 12 Nov 2013

49 comments, Last at 13 Nov 2013, 8:42pm by Steve in WI

Comments

1
by theslothook :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 5:54am

Karl...you know I can't resist. I've become a closet foles fan.

42
by Karl Cuba :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 4:51pm

He is looking good. I'm not sure how much he's being helped by his supporting cast.

That line is looking very strong, the rookie has his raw moments but the rest are all pretty accomplished. Two decent tight ends, one of the best running backs in the game, Jackson and the guy who I've been very surprised by, Riley Cooper. Where's he come from? He looks outstanding but I can't remember him doing that much in his first four years.

Plus Foles seems to be doing a good job in Kelly's rapid fire offense (am I the only person who wants to call him 'Machine Gun Kelly'?), that puts defenses on their heels at times.

It will be interesting to see what the Eagles do at qb this offseason; do they go all in on Foles or bring in competition?

43
by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 5:13pm

"am I the only person who wants to call him 'Machine Gun Kelly'?"

Wasn't that a nickname people used for Jim Kelly in the late 80's/early 90's? I may be misremembering, but I'm pretty sure Chris Berman used that for him on NFL Primetime.

My only concern with Foles is the way he looked against a Dallas defense that has otherwise been putrid against competent quarterbacks. Likely just an outlier, but something to keep in the back of your head. It's possible if he didn't get hurt in that game he could have brought the Eagles back and won the game.

2
by SFC B :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 7:00am

Keenum's 23 yard sack was just a thing of painful beauty to watch. It looked like Newton and Smith just decided to let the Cardinals get a free run on him. Anyone in the Houston area know if Keenum was trash-talking Willie Beamen-style?

3
by Revenge of the NURBS (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 9:02am

Re: Austin's 98-yd punt return, that was one of the most infuriating plays I've seen in a while as a Colts fan. On one hand, the coverage seemed to just assume he wasn't going to field it, and starting setting up to try to down it inside the 5. On the other hand, he really should NOT be fielding that ball at the 2 with so many people around him. Worked out great for him, obviously, but I can't imagine that's what he was coached to do. Sigh... still a horrible breakdown by the Colts special teams.

4
by Will Allen :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 9:45am

Dear Lord;

I beseech thee, while I hold no ill will for Your pondering namesake, I tremble in fear of the prospect that he plays well enough to to convince your servant Spielman to take an offensive guard with the bounty of a top 4 draft pick. Please grant unworthy, sinning, Vikings fans the blessing of The Ponderous One again showing he is really bad at his job.

Amen

6
by SteveM (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 10:13am

I brought up before that FO pointed out that not for two plays, Ponder would have been top ten last week. That's three weeks in a row now. Maybe DYAR favors Ponder's playing style of late, but maybe he is legitimately making strides.

7
by Will Allen :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 10:33am

No. He has played, in the past two weeks, two defenses which give up mountains of passing yards, first downs, and points, to teams with competent passing offenses. They do this because they don't cover anybody very well. Even then, against the Cowboys, The Pondering One was overlooking wide open receivers in critical situations, and then couldn't throw the ball 50 yards when it was needed.

Hopefully, The Pondering One will be healthy enough to play the Seahawks, so we can end all supposition that he is competent.

9
by SteveM (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 10:48am

If, on the other hand, he does play, how well would he have to play in order for you to conclude he actually was improving? At replacement level? 50 DYAR? Top ten again?
I'm not saying if he plays that he'll play well. The Seahawks are pretty good at making good quarterbacks look bad, much more so with mediocre and bad quarterbacks. But if he does play well ...then what?

10
by Will Allen :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 10:57am

Sure, if he plays well while the game is competitive (no rolling up 95% of his productive plays in the 2nd half while down by 3 touchdowns, like he did against the Packers), then he is worthy of reassessment.

I will give you 8-1 odds against that outcome.

20
by SteveM (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 12:25pm

Can we come to some kind of agreement as to what "Good" counts as? Opposing quarterbacks average -14 DYAR per game against the Seahawks, and they range from -164 to 125. I think anything 50 or above would constitute noteworthy.
As far as playing from behind, it'll all depend on how they got there. If the Seahawks start with the ball and score and then they recover a muffed kick off, you can hardly criticize Ponder for being down two scores. If offensive ineptitude (relatively speaking) is what's to blame, that's something else entirely.

23
by Will Allen :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 12:40pm

The point isn't that Ponder is responsible for them being down two scores. The point is that when he takes the field, in the first half, with his team down two scores, facing a defense which is overwhelmingly committed to stopping Adrian Peterson, he has to identify which receiver is the best one to throw to, and make a quality throw. Doing that against defenses which frequently leave multiple options, including the first one, open, is not particularly illuminating.

Ponder has been dreadful this year, given the focus on Peterson, and the fact that, unlike previous seasons, his receiving corps is decent. His protection has been serviceable. Having some good numbers against a bad Washington defense is not indicative of anything. Yes, if he does markedly better than the norm for a qb playing Seattle, it will be make reassessing Ponder something to consider. If I shoot 66 at Pebble Beach, from the back tees, I might reconsider my occupation.

25
by shah8 (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 2:06pm

I see, the Ponder whiners have even arrived here!

Management is firmly committed to pushing Ponder down our throats WillAllen, and I think every hint of anything else, like the rumors of benching after the Green Bay game last year, or this year's aquisition of Freeman, are only chaff to get us to believe that management is actually reasonable.

Ponder wouldn't have been hosting the ESPYs if people aren't firmly committed to making him a star, autotune and all...

27
by Will Allen :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 2:13pm

Well, I'll give you credit for not writing the last name of the actor who portrayed Sgt. Joe Friday.

28
by SteveM (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 2:21pm

I think you and I are on the same page.

31
by Will Allen :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 2:43pm

Where we differ is the notion that the numbers The Pondering One produced against Washington, and Dallas (absent two fumbles) reasonably raises a suspicion that The Pondering One does not, in fact, suck.

17
by Scott Crowder (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 11:58am

It's the Legion of Boom. Is there really an "if" option?

5
by NYMike :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 9:54am

So despite all the negativity in Audibles at the Line, it turns out Green Bay's replacement QB was ... replacement level.

24
by N8- (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 1:07pm

That was exactly my thought! Too bad the entire defense is below replacement level...

26
by Will Allen :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 2:06pm

This is where even the best metrics can fail to capture context, especially in a tiny sample size. For instance, almost all INTS have the same effect on DYAR, but all INTS are most certainly not the same. Sometimes an INT occurs when a db makes a great play on a well thrown ball, or when a receiver screws up royally, or when the zebra screws up royally (think Manning's pick six in the playoffs against the Ravens last year).. Other times, they occur, like with Tolzien's INT that almost went 102 yards in the other direction, when a qb makes such a bad decision, followed by a such a horrible execution of that bad decision, that is defies description.

32
by DisplacedPackerFan :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 3:06pm

I don't think it was a bad decision, I think it was horrible execution. That play has produced quite a few TD's when Rodgers was throwing the ball, and it was very likely the play called from the sidelines. So it was awful, no doubt, but I don't think the decision to throw it was as bad as some people say. The receiver had at least a step on the DB, and you put the ball farther out and higher up and the DB can't really make a play on it, even in the position he was in.

8
by Keith(1) (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 10:38am

I live in Louisiana, and I did not find their success this weekend very fun. ;[

11
by Will Allen :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 11:03am

When I don't look at the names of qbs too carefully, I keep thinking that it is remarkable that a guy in his eighties finds time to play qb in the NFL, when he isn't doing the voice of Shaggy.

15
by justanothersteve :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 11:28am

Now that he has given up doing America's Top 40 Countdown, he's got more time to do the things he loves.

18
by TomKelso :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 12:01pm

Holy perusing at only a glance! The G.E.E.K. has gone berserk!

19
by Will Allen :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 12:07pm

If not for those meddling pass rushers, he would'a won the game!

12
by johonny (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 11:07am

I hear Stephen Ross has complete confidence in Jeff Ireland. This confidence is based on what exactly?

48
by coboney :: Wed, 11/13/2013 - 2:13pm

He has complete confidence in Jeff Ireland getting fired I'm sure.

13
by nat :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 11:18am

That puts him on pace for 2,587 DYAR over 16 games, and that would be the second-best season in our records going back to 1989.
Back in week 4, FO touted Manning as having the fastest DYAR start ever. It was an oops moment for FO, because it failed to account for Denver's super easy starting schedule, and compared fully adjusted DYARs to Manning's mostly unadjusted one.

It would be interesting to revisit the topic and see how Manning's four week DYAR - with 100% opponent adjustments - stacks up against history. With a full ten weeks (9 games for most teams) in the books, the opponent adjustments are a more reasonable comparison now. In week 4, it was an open question whether the opponent adjustments would regress toward the mean faster than their weight increased.

It remains a great season for Manning and his offense. He's got a reasonable shot at the best DYAR ever.

22
by CBPodge :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 12:35pm

I really wish there was a feature once opponent adjustments hit full strength which gave details of the games that had had most opponent adjustment since they were actually played.

29
by dmstorm22 :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 2:27pm

I don't have Pass DVOA for back in Week 4 anymore, but through four games, Manning played the following defenses:

BAL (-7.6%), NYG (6.6%), OAK (17.1%), PHI (20.8%).

As of Week 9, those teams were:

BAL (-5.6%), NYG (-4.9%), OAK (10.1%), PHI (13.4%), so three got better (NYG by a large amount), and BAL got slightly worse.

This is before last week's games, but I can't see any of those four dropping by a substantial amount coming off of last week's games.

Basically, I think Manning's DYAR from Weeks 1-4 might actually be better now than it looked back in Week 4. Manning's issue is his numbers from Weeks 5-10 is a noticeable step down.

He's only topped 100 DYAR once since the Cowboys game (his last 200 DYAR day), and that was against the Colts.

30
by tuluse :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 2:31pm

Regression towards the mean doesn't work like you seem to be implying it does in this post.

Edit: Each team has a mean defensive performance innate to themselves, which over time they should regress towards. It's possible they would play exactly (or very close to) their mean performance when playing Peyton Manning. It's also possible they would play better or worse. However, there is not "the mean" that all defenses would regress towards.

34
by nat :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 3:24pm

No no no. That's not how regression toward the mean works at all.

If a measurement includes contributions from both a "true" value and some random variations around that value, then outliers (such as Denver's opposing defenses early in the season) are more likely to be teams whose true value and random variations aligned.

Later, the random variation is as likely to less extreme, or to point in the other direction. So the measured values "regress toward the mean" even though the true values have not changed.

The overall result is that teams regress toward the league's mean, with the effect being strongest for the most extreme teams.

Or to say it another way: today your (outlier) defense is bad and unlucky. Next week, they'll still be bad. But they might be lucky.

14
by dan12345 (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 11:18am

With respect to Eli Manning's short throws: it seems pretty clear to me that the Giants have eliminated or scaled down the deep ball in their playbook because of the offensive line's problems. It only took them, what, 8 weeks to do?

16
by panthersnbraves :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 11:43am

The Panthers figured it after 4, thank goodness.

33
by TomC :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 3:19pm

That stat line amazed me. Nicks & Cruz both healthy, Eli presumably healthy, an effective running game, and yet 2004-Bears-like production against the #30 pass defense. This either means that the Giants are well and truly done or that if they can do an extreme makeover on the OL next season, they'll be contenders again.

36
by Mark S. (not verified) :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 3:30pm

The utter failure of their interior OL has sunk the season. Eli is generally OK with edge pressure, as we have seen in the past with 2 superbowl victories with David Diehl at LT. However this year (and last year, really) he has nowhere to go because the pressure in right in his face on most plays and he can't hang tight or step up into the pocket. Baas and Diehl are terrible. And Snee, sadly, seems on the steep decline after an excellent career.

38
by TomC :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 3:43pm

Yeah, I was very surprised to see Snee's name appear on the "most sacks allowed, fewer than 200 snaps played" list in Under Pressure last week. On the upside (for Giants fans), it's not unprecedented to replace your entire interior line in one offseason and have decent results.

46
by Bjorn Nittmo :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 6:50pm

Baas and Snee are not to blame for continued interior blocking woes, since both have been on the IR for a few weeks now. But yes, if either ever suits up again for the Giants I'll be surprised.

21
by CBPodge :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 12:34pm

Two Tavon Austin questions: one, how many points over average was his punt return worth on Sunday? I would imagine that most punt returns fielded at the 2 yard line are worth negative points?

Two, do punt return stats for returners do anything to separate the returner from penalties? Because that was actually the third punt he's returned for a TD so far this season, but the other two have been called back (legitimately) for penalties (one of which definitely was on the block that sprung him, one of which was the sort-of-maybe-kind-of sprung him). I'm just curious whether calling him one of the worst punt returners since the merger (at least until Sunday!) is as much a function of negative points from penalties on his blockers than on his actual returns?

35
by Vince Verhei :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 3:28pm

To answer your second question: Austin ***was*** one of the worst punt returners in history using simple yards per return. Through nine weeks, minimum 20 returns, he was ninth-worst. (Which is actually a little better than he had been when I checked two or three weeks ago.

Through 10 weeks, minimum 20 returns, he is out of the bottom 200. Such is the power of the 98-yarder.

37
by TomC :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 3:38pm

1) In an unnamed external forum, an unnamed FO contributor responded to Bears fans' complaints about leaving Cutler in for the 2nd half with (paraphrasing here): "But McCown would have done something McCown-like eventually." That's certainly what any rational observer should have expected over the last three games, but it has steadfastly refused to happen. Are we witnessing a prolonged stretch of very good luck, or has Josh McCown become a legitimately decent NFL quarterback (in which case, Marc Trestman truly is the greatest QB coach ever)?

2) Matt Forte is hurt. I don't know when it happened, but I'm convinced it's true. On Sunday, he had no burst, he couldn't get out of cuts effectively, and he was consistently tackled one-on-one by defensive backs (and, more to the point, LIONS defensive backs). The Bears run blocking was not that awful, but Forte could only gain yards when the blocking was effectively perfect.

39
by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 4:28pm

To be fair, as much as Lions corners struggle as pass defenders, Chris Houston has always been a really good run-stopping corner, as is Mathis. The difference between this game and previous games when Forte ran all over the Lions is that the defensive ends kept contain for once.

I can't comment on whether or not Forte is hurt, but as far as your observations about the Bears run-blocking, I didn't really see the same thing you did. I thought the Bears run-blocking was pretty bad (granted this was a real-time observation, and not from All-22 study). It didn't look like Forte had any room to run, and was hit in the backfield more than a few times (the stop on the 2nd two point conversion was just one example, along with the 4th down carry by Michael Bush).

41
by TomC :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 4:40pm

OK, yeah, I should have clarified that I meant "on outside runs." The Bears up-the-middle rush game has been terrible all year, and so I was mentally blocking out those plays where they decided it was a good idea to try against Suh & Fairley. But I thought there were definitely opportunities on the edge, and Forte just didn't exploit them. There was also a screen pass in which a Lions DB got part of a hand on Forte's foot and brought him down, which just shouldn't ever happen.

44
by JoeyHarringtonsPiano :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 5:14pm

Yea, I get what you're saying there. He seemed to go down a lot to minimal contact.

49
by Steve in WI :: Wed, 11/13/2013 - 8:42pm

I don't know, but it seems to me that McCown is a decent NFL backup quarterback, if the situation is right. The Bears having a good offensive line and some weapons for him to throw the ball to makes it a good situation I think.

I also don't see how anyone who watched the game could think that McCown didn't belong in the game from, at minimum, the start of the 2nd half.

40
by Dave :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 4:34pm

I have a really hard time putting -20 on Dalton for the abomination that was that final Bengals play. I guess it partly cancels out the luck from the hail mary, so that's fair, but I'd argue that both plays had almost nothing whatsoever to do with Dalton.

(After typing that out it seems obvious that for some reason the negative jumps out in my mind more than the positive. I don't like the Bengals or Dalton, so I wonder why...)

45
by CBPodge :: Tue, 11/12/2013 - 6:05pm

I think it's more of a "I'm flagging this up because it's an interesting oddity that the system gives him this", rather than "he deserved this." Sort of saying "hey, these numbers from an unthinking machine are dependent on using your eyes as well".

47
by graywh :: Wed, 11/13/2013 - 12:22am

"In limited time, Locker ran only one play in Jacksonville territory. It was a fumbled snap, recovered by the Jaguars."

It was 5 plays--4 hand-offs and an option run. And the lost fumble wasn't on the snap, but on a hand-off to Chris Johnson.

http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2013111007/2013/REG10/jaguars@titans#menu=...

The drive starting at 8:57 of the 2nd quarter following an interception by Colin McCarthy.