We've all seen the Next Gen Stats as part of NFL broadcasts -- player speed, distance traveled, etc. -- but this story on NFL.com is the first time I've seen anything really useful done with the data. For each pass thrown in the NFL, they've calculated the likelihood of a completion based on six factors:
- Air distance, the actual distance between the passer and receiver, both horizontally and vertically.
- Target separation, the distance between the receiver and the nearest defender in coverage.