Wild-Card Quick Reads

Indianapolis Colts QB Philip Rivers
Indianapolis Colts QB Philip Rivers
Photo: USA Today Sports Images

Well, it happened again: Philip Rivers found himself with the ball in his hands, needing a score to tie or take the lead, in the last two minutes of a football game. And it also happened again that his team lost, this time a 27-24 defeat to the Buffalo Bills.

As we first noted this in Week 2 of 2017, Philip Rivers has spent a ridiculous amount of time in two-minute drill situations in his career. And he hasn't been successful very often, as he and the Chargers were noted for their ability to find new and creative ways to lose heartbreaking games. With Rivers leaving California to join the Indianapolis Colts, it seemed like 2020 would show us whether it was the player or the team that was more responsible for that sorrow. Rivers and the Colts reached the playoffs while the Chargers found a way to go 7-9 despite a record-setting rookie quarterback, indicating that the team had a problem, but then Indianapolis' season ended on a drive that started with 2:30 to go and couldn't even reach field goal range.

Since nearly three whole seasons have passed, we thought it was time to update Rivers' numbers in two-minute situations. The following table shows the most passes thrown by all quarterbacks while trailing by eight points or fewer in the last two minutes of the fourth quarter since 1994 (the first season in Stathead's database). This differs from our original study in a few ways. First, due to time constraints, we're not going to go back and add data for players whose careers started before 1994 -- you'll just have to guess what earlier numbers might have looked like for Brett Favre and Drew Bledsoe. Second, since we're talking about Rivers' playoff game, we are also including playoff games for all quarterbacks. (Tom Brady, naturally, leads all quarterbacks with 43 postseason two-minute drill pass attempts; Drew Brees is second with 23.) The final results don't change, however -- Rivers has still thrown way, way more passes in these situations than anyone else.

Most Passes Trailing by 8 Points or Fewer, Including Playoffs, 1994-2020
Player Team Cmp Att Yds TD Int Sk Total Att 2MD%
Philip Rivers SD/LAC/IND 141 307 1645 8 16 15 8,536 3.60%
Tom Brady NE/TB 115 238 1479 14 9 7 12,262 1.94%
Joe Flacco BAL/DEN/NYJ 111 227 1316 8 10 9 6,514 3.48%
Matt Ryan ATL 109 217 1435 9 10 7 7,791 2.79%
Ben Roethlisberger PIT 111 200 1607 12 7 14 8,568 2.33%
Matthew Stafford DET 103 199 1297 10 6 7 6,339 3.14%
Drew Brees SD/NO 108 192 1329 14 10 5 11,234 1.71%
Peyton Manning IND/DEN 93 186 1122 8 14 7 10,407 1.79%
Brett Favre GB/NYJ/MIN 97 177 1241 8 11 10 9,881 1.79%
Eli Manning NYG 92 172 1167 13 8 6 8,513 2.02%
Cam Newton CAR/NE 85 166 1051 8 1 12 4,570 3.63%
Jon Kitna 4 teams 66 157 742 6 13 4 4,509 3.48%
Aaron Rodgers GB 76 153 1064 11 6 6 7,250 2.11%
Tony Romo DAL 92 149 1081 8 4 2 4,521 3.30%
Russell Wilson SEA 69 145 1027 11 7 5 4,783 3.03%
Drew Bledsoe NE/BUF/DAL 63 133 737 7 6 12 6,522 2.04%
Alex Smith SF/KC/WAS 64 130 660 4 6 5 5,408 2.40%
Carson Palmer CIN/OAK/ARI 70 128 936 4 7 13 6,423 1.99%
Kerry Collins 6 teams 59 128 776 6 4 5 6,494 1.97%
Andy Dalton CIN/DAL 65 120 762 5 4 7 4,922 2.44%
Ryan Fitzpatrick 8 teams 65 120 762 7 12 6 5,041 2.38%

The gap between Rivers and Brady in second place is bigger than the gap between Brady and 10th-place Eli Manning. It's uncanny -- no matter where Rivers goes, he always finds himself with victory just outside his reach. Even if we look at these as a percentage of all passes ("2MD%"), Rivers still finds himself near the top of the table. (Cam Newton ekes him out by a few decimal points -- note that this is a percentage of passes only and does not include sacks or rushing data.)

(And no, there are no typos at the bottom of the table -- Ryan Fitzpatrick and Andy Dalton have both completed exactly 65 passes in exactly 120 attempts for exactly 762 yards in two-minute drill scenarios.)

We also went ahead and counted up two-minute drill passes in losses. The names at the top are mostly the same. Rivers, as you would imagine, still comes out way ahead of everyone else. Brady, of course, falls a few places; Brees, another ex-Chargers quarterback, goes up a few spots.

Most Passes Trailing by 8 Points or Fewer, Team Lost Game, Including Playoffs, 1994-2020
Player Team Cmp Att Yds TD Int Sk Total Att 2MD%
Philip Rivers SD/LAC/IND 101 239 1105 0 16 11 8,536 2.80%
Joe Flacco BAL/DEN/NYJ 85 185 916 4 10 9 6,514 2.84%
Tom Brady NE/TB 59 154 772 3 9 6 12,262 1.26%
Drew Brees SD/NO 77 150 926 5 10 5 11,234 1.34%
Matt Ryan ATL 67 149 852 5 9 5 7,791 1.91%
Peyton Manning IND/DEN 61 136 795 3 14 6 10,407 1.31%
Brett Favre GB/NYJ/MIN 67 133 793 2 11 9 9,881 1.35%
Jon Kitna 4 teams 50 130 520 2 13 4 4,509 2.88%
Ben Roethlisberger PIT 66 129 1000 5 7 13 8,568 1.51%
Cam Newton CAR/NE 61 125 741 2 1 11 4,570 2.74%
Aaron Rodgers GB 56 118 753 4 6 5 7,250 1.63%
Eli Manning NYG 52 114 573 5 8 5 8,513 1.34%
Matthew Stafford DET 48 110 543 0 6 6 6,339 1.74%
Russell Wilson SEA 47 108 617 2 7 5 4,783 2.26%
Carson Palmer CIN/OAK/ARI 58 103 722 1 7 12 6,423 1.60%
Tony Romo DAL 57 102 703 2 4 1 4,521 2.26%
Kerry Collins 6 teams 45 102 593 2 4 5 6,494 1.57%
Alex Smith SF/KC/WAS 47 102 472 1 6 5 5,408 1.89%
Chad Pennington NYJ/MIA 52 98 501 1 7 4 2,687 3.65%
Andy Dalton CIN/DAL 51 97 598 2 4 7 4,922 1.97%

One new name really stands out at the bottom of the table. Remember when Newton led all quarterbacks in the top table with 3.63% of his career passes coming in two-minute drill situations? Well, Chad Pennington tops that rate at 3.65%, even ignoring games that his team won. For the record, he had 11 two-minute drill passes in wins in his career.

And finally, we looked up two-minute drill passes in wins. (No, we're not going to bother with ties today -- sorry Kirk Cousins!) Rivers falls all the way to a tie for fourth place; his spot at the top is taken by Matthew Stafford.

Most Passes Trailing by 8 Points or Fewer, Team Won Game, Including Playoffs, 1994-2020
Player Team Cmp Att Yds TD Int Sk Total Att 2MD%
Matthew Stafford DET 55 89 754 10 0 1 6,339 1.40%
Tom Brady NE/TB 56 84 707 11 0 1 12,262 0.69%
Ben Roethlisberger PIT 45 71 607 7 0 1 8,568 0.83%
Matt Ryan ATL 42 68 583 4 1 2 7,791 0.87%
Philip Rivers SD/LAC/IND 40 68 540 8 0 4 8,536 0.80%
Derek Carr OAK/LV 37 62 521 9 0 1 3,828 1.62%
Eli Manning NYG 40 58 594 8 0 1 8,513 0.68%
Peyton Manning IND/DEN 32 50 327 5 0 1 10,407 0.48%
Tony Romo DAL 35 47 378 6 0 1 4,521 1.04%
Steve McNair HOIL/TEN/BAL 31 45 321 4 0 0 4,854 0.93%
Ryan Tannehill MIA/NYJ 31 44 386 7 0 2 3,761 1.17%
Brett Favre GB/NYJ/MIN 30 44 448 6 0 1 9,881 0.45%
Joe Flacco BAL/DEN/NYJ 26 42 400 4 0 0 6,514 0.64%
Drew Brees SD/NO 31 42 403 9 0 0 11,234 0.37%
Jay Cutler DEN/CHI/MIA 27 39 314 6 0 2 4,961 0.79%
Russell Wilson SEA 22 37 410 9 0 0 4,783 0.77%
Drew Bledsoe NE/BUF/DAL 25 37 256 5 0 0 6,522 0.57%
Aaron Rodgers GB 20 35 311 7 0 1 7,250 0.48%
Brian Griese 4 teams 20 34 228 2 0 0 2,797 1.22%
Marc Bulger STL 21 34 294 3 0 1 3,283 1.04%

Several of these players weren't even in the first table, including Derek Carr, Steve McNair, Ryan Tannehill, and Jay Cutler. If we sort this table as a percentage of all passes, we find Carr at the top, followed by Stafford and then -- of all people -- Brian Griese, who threw fewer than 3,000 passes while bouncing around between four teams in the early part of the 21st century. Griese was probably better than you remember -- he led the NFL in passer rating with Denver in 2000, and in completion percentage with Tampa Bay in 2004 -- but he couldn't stay healthy, never starting 16 games in a season.

You'll note that a lot of great quarterbacks are non-factors in these tables -- neither Peyton Manning nor Aaron Rodgers rank particularly high, and neither Josh Allen, Patrick Mahomes, nor Deshaun Watson have even hit 50 two-minute drill passes in their brilliant young careers. It's good to perform well in the clutch, but it's better to have a win locked up before the fourth quarter even begins.

 


 

Quarterbacks
Rk
Player
Team
CP/AT
Yds
TD
INT
Sacks
Total
DYAR
Pass
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Opp
1.
Baker Mayfield CLE
21/34
263
3
0
0
185
183
1
PIT
If I may plagiarize myself from Twitter: Mayfield is the first player to throw for 250 yards against Pittsburgh with no sacks or interceptions since Ryan Tannehill in 2016; he is the first to do all that and throw three touchdowns since Tom Brady in 2010. In a related note, Mayfield gains 55 DYAR due to opponent adjustments. That's a lot, but not the most of the week. It's the playoffs -- most players get boosts in opponent adjustments because the majority of the bad defenses didn't get this far.
2.
Tom Brady TB
22/40
381
2
0
3
170
170
0
WAS
Brady gains a league-high 60 DYAR due to opponent adjustments. In one stretch over the first and second quarters, he completed eight passes in a row for a total of 152 yards and two touchdowns. Seven of those completions picked up first downs; the other was a 4-yard gain on second-and-7. Brady had a great game despite a brutal performance in the red zone, where all six of his passes were incomplete and he was sacked once. On deep balls, he went 8-of-13 for 190 yards and two touchdowns.
3.
Philip Rivers IND
27/46
309
2
0
0
149
149
0
BUF
Rivers had a bad day in the red zone (7-of-11 for 43 yards and only one touchdown), but a good day on deep balls (6-of-10 for 140 yards and a touchdown).
4.
Drew Brees NO
28/39
265
2
0
0
123
139
-16
CHI
Brees was most effective on throws to his left, where he went 9-of-10 for 124 yards. He only had three conversions on first down and two more on second, but he had nine on third downs, going 10-of-13 for 152 yards. Brees had three carries for 2 yards, including an aborted snap and a failure to score on fourth-and-goal from the 1. If you're curious, Taysom Hill had -37 DYAR passing (one sack-fumble, one 1-yard DPI) and -1 DYAR rushing (four carries for 15 yards).
5.
Josh Allen BUF
26/35
324
2
0
2
117
102
15
IND
Allen's first pass of the second half was incomplete, but then he reeled off a dozen completions in a row, picking up 138 yards and a touchdown. He tore up the middle of the Colts defense, going 5-of-7 for 94 yards; each of those completions gained at least 13 yards and a first down. he completed seven of his 12 deep throws for 180 yards. Allen ran 11 times for 54 yards and a touchdown. He loses 20 total rushing DYAR for his three stuffs: a zero-yard gain on first-and-10, a 2-yard loss on second-and-8, and a 5-yard loss on third-and-2.
6.
Taylor Heinicke WAS
26/44
306
1
1
2
85
53
33
TB
Heinicke gains 55 DYAR due to opponent adjustments. Despite that boost, however, he didn't come close the best game of the year by an NFC East quarterback not named Dak Prescott, as we discussed in Audibles. It was however, the best game for a Washington quarterback, surpassing Alex Smith's game against Pittsburgh in Week 13. He was at his best on deep balls, going 7-of-9 for 157 yards. He also ran six times for 46 yards and a touchdown; all of his carries gained at least 2 yards, and four gained first downs.
7.
Mitchell Trubisky CHI
19/29
199
1
0
1
76
76
0
NO
Trubisky gains 46 DYAR due to opponent adjustments. He only threw for seven first downs, and four of them came with the Bears down by 18 points and less than three minutes left in the game. His only third-down conversion was an 18-yard completion to Riley Ridley on third-and-2 at the two-minute warning; up to that point, he had gone 3-of-8 for 20 yards on third downs.
8.
Jared Goff LAR
9/19
155
1
0
2
4
3
1
SEA
Goff had quite a boom-or-bust day. His five completions for first downs gained a total of 129 yards; his other 16 dropbacks (including two sacks) gained a total of 11. If you're curious, starting quarterback John Wolford had -17 DYAR passing (3-of-6 for 29 yards, one sack) and -4 DYAR rushing (one carry for 2 yards).
9.
Ben Roethlisberger PIT
47/68
501
4
4
0
-1
-1
0
CLE
Roethlisberger set a postseason record for attempts, and a playoff or regular-season for completions. His total passing DYAR shrank as low as -167 early in the second quarter but then grew fairly steadily over the rest of the game. Down the middle, he went 16-of-26 for 195 yards and a touchdown ... and all four interceptions.
10.
Ryan Tannehill TEN
18/26
165
1
1
1
-14
-3
4
BAL
Tannehill's totals include -14 receiving DYAR for his one catch, a 10-yard loss. (He also threw that pass, so it may be unfair to punish him twice -- we have never been certain about how to handle plays where a guy passes and catches the ball.)
11.
Lamar Jackson BAL
17/24
179
0
1
5
-18
-43
26
TEN
Jackson loses a league-high 21 DYAR due to opponent adjustments. Inside the Tennessee 40, he went 3-of-6 for 19 yards with no touchdowns and two sacks. Oddly, he did not throw a single pass down the middle of the field. He ran 14 times for 138 yards and with a 48-yard touchdown, but only five of those runs gained first downs; his other nine carries all gained 4 yards or less, including three stuffs and failures to convert on second-and-4, second-and-7, and third-and-3.
12.
Russell Wilson SEA
11/27
174
2
1
5
-51
-69
18
LAR
Wilson gains 42 DYAR due to opponent adjustments. His 51-yard touchdown pass to DK Metcalf left Seattle trailing 13-10 late in the second quarter; the next time he threw for a first down, Seattle was trailing 30-13 late in the fourth. In between, he went 5-of-15 for 39 yards. His pick-six came on a throw to his left, but most of his good throws did too; he threw 15 passes down the middle and to the right, completing only two of them for 21 yards. On third downs, he went 1-of-8 for 18 yards with one conversion (which came with Seattle down by 17 points late in the fourth quarter) and one sack. He failed to pick up a single first down on throws to running backs or tight ends, going 2-of-9 for 6 yards.

 

Five Best Running Backs by DYAR (Total)
Rk
Player
Team
Runs
Rush
Yds
Rush
TD
Rec
Rec
Yds
Rec
TD
Total
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Rec
DYAR
Opp
1.
Cam Akers LAR
28
131
1
2/2
45
0
69
51
18
SEA
Akers gains 22 DYAR due to opponent adjustments. He ran for seven first downs in Seattle, including a 15-yard gain on second-and-13, while being stuffed three times. His two catches were a 1-yard gain on second-and-10 and a 44-yard gain on third-and-9.
2.
Leonard Fournette TB
19
93
1
4/4
39
0
64
40
25
WAS
Fournette gains 14 DYAR due to opponent adjustments. He had a half-dozen first downs on the ground, including gains of 13 and 17 yards, while being stuffed twice. Two of his catches also gained first downs: a 22-yard gain on first-and-10 and a 5-yard gain third-and-3.
3.
Nick Chubb CLE
18
76
0
4/4
69
1
52
10
42
PIT
Chubb gains 16 DYAR due to opponent adjustments. He only ran four first downs against Pittsburgh, the longest a gain of 20, while being stuffed five times. However, he had two more first downs as a receiver: a 21-yard gain and a 40-yard touchdown, both on second-and-9.
4.
Alvin Kamara NO
23
99
1
2/2
17
0
43
28
15
CHI
Kamara gains 27 DYAR due to opponent adjustments. He ran for five first downs, the longest a gain of 25, while being stuffed five times, including two failures to convert with 1 yard to go. His two catches: 7-yard gain on first-and-10, 10-yard gain on third-and-6.
5.
Kareem Hunt CLE
8
48
2
1/1
13
0
39
31
9
PIT
Hunt had three first downs on the ground, including 8- and 11-yard touchdowns, while being stuffed twice. His one catch was a 13-yard gain on second-and-10.

 

Five Best Running Backs by DYAR (Rushing)
Rk
Player
Team
Runs
Rush
Yds
Rush
TD
Rec
Rec
Yds
Rec
TD
Total
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Rec
DYAR
Opp
1.
Cam Akers LAR
28
131
1
2/2
45
0
69
51
18
SEA
2.
Leonard Fournette TB
19
93
1
4/4
39
0
64
40
25
WAS
3.
Kareem Hunt CLE
8
48
2
1/1
13
0
39
31
9
PIT
4.
Alvin Kamara NO
23
99
1
2/2
17
0
43
28
15
CHI
5.
Chris Carson SEA
16
77
0
1/2
5
0
20
25
-6
LAR
Carson gains 14 rushing DYAR due to opponent adjustments. He ran for three first downs, the longest a gain of 10 (he also had a gain of 14 on second-and-34), while being stuffed twice -- both on third downs.

 

Worst Running Back by DYAR (Total)
Rk
Player
Team
Runs
Rush
Yds
Rush
TD
Rec
Rec
Yds
Rec
TD
Total
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Rec
DYAR
Opp
1.
Derrick Henry TEN
18
40
0
3/3
11
0
-36
-32
-4
BAL
Henry led the league with 97 rushing first downs this season, but he didn't even gain one against Baltimore. Only five of his 18 carries counted as successful plays. His longest was an 8-yard gain on first-and-10. He was stuffed four times, including a failure to convert on third-and-1. None of his catches -- 6- and 7-yard gains on first-and-10, plus a 2-yard loss on third-and-5 -- picked up first downs either.

 

Worst Running Back by DYAR (Rushing)
Rk
Player
Team
Runs
Rush
Yds
Rush
TD
Rec
Rec
Yds
Rec
TD
Total
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Rec
DYAR
Opp
1.
Derrick Henry TEN
18
40
0
3/3
11
0
-36
-32
-4
BAL

 

Five Best Wide Receivers and Tight Ends by DYAR
Rk
Player
Team
Rec
Att
Yds
Avg
TD
Total
DYAR
Opp
1.
Stefon Diggs BUF
6
9
128
21.3
1
54
IND
All six of Diggs' catches picked up a new set of downs, including gains of 35 and 36 yards.
2.
Marquise Brown BAL
7
9
109
15.6
0
45
TEN
Brown's totals include 11 rushing DYAR for his two carries for 19 yards. Only four of his catches gained first downs, but they came on gains of 17, 19, 20, and 28 yards.
3.
Antonio Brown TB
2
3
49
24.5
1
43
WAS
Brown's totals include 14 rushing DYAR for his one carry for 22 yards. His two catches were a 36-yard touchdown on third-and-3 and a 13-yard gain on second-and-10.
4.
Gabriel Davis BUF
4
4
85
21.2
0
38
IND
All four of Davis' catches gained at least 13 yards and a first down, the longest a gain of 37.
5.
Mike Evans TB
6
10
119
19.8
0
35
WAS
All six of Evans' catches gained at least 13 yards and a first down, the longest a gain of 35.

 

Worst Wide Receiver or Tight End by DYAR
Rk
Player
Team
Rec
Att
Yds
Avg
TD
Total
DYAR
Opp
1.
John Brown BUF
0
4
0
0.0
0
-32
IND
Brown's four incompletions included failures to convert on second-and-8, third-and-3, and third-and-6.

Comments

86 comments, Last at 15 Jan 2021, 12:13am

1 Wilson

Probably the worst game of Wilson's career. Oh sure, there might be several games with worse DYAR (playoff game against Carolina, maybe?) but that was just tough to watch.

17 Take out the scrambling, and…

In reply to by LyleNM

Take out the scrambling, and the improvised TD bomb to Metcalf, and there was precisely nothing. Sure, I get Seattle's O-Line was somewhat overmatched here, but there ought to be some way of scheming production given the talent level of Wilson and his receivers. 

Basically Seattle's offensive coaching sucks. I am waiting for anybody to convince me otherwise. 

24 I wonder if Carroll will…

I wonder if Carroll will recognize that or if he'll just conclude they need to run more. I don't think I've ever seen an offensive collapse such as what happened to the Seahawks this year. I mean, sure, many times, but not when the QB was a superstar in his prime and no major injuries can be blamed.

32 Watching

Watching that Seahawks offense was like watching someone try to commit suicide with a thousand paper cuts.

It's amazing that the offense still ranks so highly in DVOA after the last 6 weeks of the season. Once teams starting playing the 2 deep safety and clogging the passing lanes with rushers, Seattle's offense took a nose dive. It's very telling that the player's (I think it was Tyler Lockett) said that teams were using different defenses on them then they were seeing on film. It's almost like the league figured out how to stop the Seahawks offense and the coaches couldn't figure out how to adjust.

Also, Wilson looks a lot slower now. I'm sure it's a combination of age and all the hits he's taken but a couple of years ago he'd have no problem going one on one against a linebacker or end in the flat. This year he's not had any of the burst that he showed before.

10 Yup. He threw an…

Yup. He threw an interception to Nate Clements, who fumbled the ball back during his runback. In his defense, there were still 90 seconds to go and the Falcons had all three timeouts down 14-13, so it's not a situation where they definitely would have won if he had gone down.

https://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/201010030atl.htm

3 Roethlisberger wasn’t…

Roethlisberger wasn’t penalized for the bad snap resulting in a TD? I thought those went against the QB.

4 Rivers threw for only 8…

Rivers threw for only 8 touchdowns in those two-minute drills. To find a QB who has thrown for fewer touchdowns than that, you have to go all the way down to Drew Bledsoe, who has a third as many attempts as Rivers.

8 And 16 picks. I'd love to…

And 16 picks. I'd love to see the # of games in each table, but if I had to guess at his win % based on the numbers here it's probably around 25%.

(nitpick: Kitna has only 6 TDs and is more like half the attempts of Rivers)

6 I don't know if John Elway…

I don't know if John Elway still doesn't have the record for most 4th quarter comeback wins, probably doesn't, but if the tables went back further than 1994 I imagine he would feature highly. 

 

Comment more for Audibles than Quick Reads, but I thought Seattle's and Pittsburgh's losses over the weekend were really damning in a sense of "where do we go from here?" Seattle is more clear cut - Wilson is a scrambling QB that is getting older and how many years do you have left of him being Russell Wilson? Meanwhile be it Seattle coaching and GM staff are Football Outsiders subscribers or super analytical sabermetricians which means they can't scout line play at all, but they cannot find offensive linemen to save their lives. How many years in a row has this been? Pittsburgh I have no idea what they could do, but Rooney gives his coaches very long leashes so I doubt Tomlin's gone, and Roethlisberger is in his career twilight.

11 PFR now has Peyton Manning…

PFR now has Peyton Manning first, Elway seventh in both game-winning drives and fourth-quarter comebacks.

https://www.pro-football-reference.com/leaders/gwd_career.htm

https://www.pro-football-reference.com/leaders/comebacks_career.htm

21 Separate lists for Reg. Season and playoffs

Vince-there is a list for the playoffs only. And that list is flawed when it comes to 4QC's. Scott decided that if a PO game was tied in the 4th Q a QB would get a GWD but not a 4QC, That thinking is fine for the Reg. Season but not the PO's because of unlimited OT.                                                                                                                                                                                                  Check the S.B. between the Pats and Rams. Game was tied at 17 in the 4th and Pats won 20-17. Brady got a GWD but no 4QC. Because it was a PO game, if the Pats do not score then they  definitely LOSE the game. Because they did score, Brady turned a sure LOSS into a WIN. Classic definition of a COMEBACK WIN.       

33 SB 36

If Brady had not led a GWD late in the fourth quarter, that game would have gone to OT.  I don't see how you call that a comeback win.  The Patriots never trailed in the second half.  

36 It would have gone into OT

In reply to by RickD

It was a PO game-there must be a winner and loser-NO TIE. If the score would have been 18-17 with Brady down a point and he does not score-the Pats LOSE. If it is 17-17 and Brady does not score-the Pats LOSE. Brady does help the Pats get to 20, therefore he turned a sure LOSS into a WIN. That is the definition of a Comeback Win-you turn a sure LOSS into a WIN.                                                                                                                                                                                                 If it was a Reg. Season game tied 17-17 it would not qualify because even if Brady does not score-his team might not lose-it can end in a TIE. If he does score he only turned a TIE into a WIN. Big difference from turning a sure LOSS into a WIN.

40 The right words

It is tough putting this into words, but the main point is that in a playoff game, being tied in the 4th is the same as being down in the 4th-IF YOU DO NOT SCORE AGAIN YOU WILL LOSE THE GAME. Therefore, if you do score and win the game you turned a sure LOSS into a WIN. Classic definition of a Comeback Win.

42 No, a comeback win must…

In reply to by Bob Smith

No, a comeback win must include a comeback, which by definition, is when you are trailing.  Scoring to break a tie - even in the playoffs - should definitely not count as a comeback win.

83 I mean, labelling things is…

I mean, labelling things is completely pointless unless there's a reason to them, so I think the better point is that a GWD when you're tied in the playoffs doesn't have the same time pressure as a 4QC situation. So grouping them there is a bit silly - no one's going to go for it on 4th and 15 on their own 20 in a playoff game tied, but they'll sure as hell do it when they're trailing with a minute left.

It does have slightly more consequences in the sense that ties are off the table, however, all playoff games have increased consequences, so that distinction seems a little silly.

47 Open mind is needed

In the playoffs there is ALWAYS a WINNER and a LOSER. Therefore you must look at a tie game as a deficit. The QB that scores and wins the game turned a sure loss into a win. A comeback is when you turn a sure loss into a win. It is as simple as that.

50 Open mind is needed

In the playoffs there is ALWAYS a WINNER and a LOSER. Therefore you must look at a tie game as a deficit. The QB that scores and wins the game turned a sure loss into a win. A comeback is when you turn a sure loss into a win. It is as simple as that.

54 Let's try this

Brady is down 18-17 in the 4th . If the game ends he loses. If he scores he wins 20-17. He turned a sure loss into a win. Next game he is tied 17-17 in the 4th or OT, if he sores and wins 20-17 he just turned a sure loss into a win. He came back from what would have been sure losses and turned them into wins. Turning a sure loss into a win has to be 1 definition of a comeback win.

62 Very simple

In reply to by Bob Smith

Aaron-it's very simple. If the game is tied in the 4th in the Reg. Season the winning QB does not deserve or get credited with a 4QC. If it happens in the playoffs he does deserve and should get that credit. There is definitely a difference because of the possibility of a tie in the Reg. Season.

64 It’s a defensive score. If…

In reply to by Bob Smith

It’s a defensive score.

If you are tied in a playoff game it is NOT true that the QB must lead a scoring drive or else lose the game. You could win on a defensive score or a punt return. 

Your premise is wrong.

Sure, the importance of a scoring drive when tied is different in the playoffs. No one would dispute that. But there is still a difference between a comeback drive and a tie-breaking drive. It makes sense to count them separately.

69 This is nonsense

You obviously aren't aware of the parameters that Scott defined when he started reviewing 4QC's and GWD's FOR QUARTERBACKS. 

80 That's right almost all of the time

That's right almost all of the time. The 1 example where it is not-when teams are tied in the 4th IN A PLAYOFF GAME. A 17-17 game is exactly the same as 18-17 game if ONE TEAM DOES NOT SCORE AGAIN. If the game ends 18-17 then that non-scoring team WILL LOSE the game. If it is 17-17 the non-scoring team WILL LOSE the game. 

81 The team that is behind.

To be more clear-if the team THAT IS BEHIND DOES NOT SCORE AGAIN-they will lose the game no matter if it is 18-17 OR 17-17.And that is the crux of my point all along-the way that differs from a Reg. Season game that could end in a tie. A playoff game cannot end in a tie. The scenario in #80 only applies to a playoff game.

82 That is why it should be a 4QC

And that is also the basis for my point that the above should qualify for a 4QC. If the team that is behind would score and win the game no matter if it is 18-17 or 17-17, then that QB that scored just turned a sure loss into a win. He led his team to a comeback victory from what would have been a sure defeat as I have proven to you. Hey, don't get me wrong-it really doesn't matter in the big scheme of things, but it is fun to debate.

84 OK I'll try and format this…

OK I'll try and format this the same way you have to see if that gets through to you.

The problem with your argument is that OVERTIME EXISTS in the playoffs. So if you want to REDEFINE the word comeback, which requires a deficit and A TIE IS NOT A DEFICIT, your argument only applies TO OVERTIME not the FOURTH QUARTER. Because as others have said ad nauseum failing to score in a 17-17 4th quarter tie in the playoffs is NOT a loss. It leads to overtime. If the QB leads a scoring drive IN OT then maybe you can give him an OTCB victory.

We understand what you are saying but WORDS HAVE MEANINGS. Yes those meanings change over time, but scoring to go ahead from a tie is not a come back, REGARDLESS OF THE WIDER SITUATION. It's a go ahead score. It is not a come from behind score, because you WEREN'T BEHIND. The word TIED has a definition, and that still applies regardless of playoff, regular season, backyard football, or even a completely different sport!

You are trying to capture a data point that is ALREADY CAPTURED in the GWD stat. There is NO BENEFIT OR POINT in muddying the definition of a 4th Quarter COMEBACK (not 4th Quarter victory sealing drive, but C O M E B A C K) to capture something that is already covered by another stat. You can use both stats to get more nuance for whatever your argument is, likely that QB you like better than your friend is actually better than some other QB because I've redefined a stat in a way that NO ONE ELSE WHO FOLLOWS FOOTBALL uses.

57 The problem with your logic…

In reply to by Bob Smith

The problem with your logic is that 17-17 is not a "sure loss".

If a QB has the ball with two minutes left, down 18-17, and fails, that is a sure loss.

But if he's tied and fails, then the game goes to overtime.  Overtime is most definitely not a sure loss; it's a 50/50 proposition, more or less, and the team will get another chance to win.

60 Certainly it is

If Brady is tied 17-17 in OT and DOES NOT SCORE AGAIN, IT IS A SURE LOSS. What don't you understand about that? In order for that game to end the other team HAD TO HAVE SCORED and therefore WON THE GAME. If Brady wins that game, then he turned a sure loss into a win. He came back and led his team to that win instead of what would definitely have been a sure loss if he did not score again. Very simple.

73 Yes, if they don't score…

In reply to by Bob Smith

Yes, if they don't score they will lose.  It is still not a come from behind victory.  That term has a specific meaning.

If you want to create a category called "do or die", which includes regular season games where you were losing or playoff games where you were losing or tied, go for it.  But definitionally, a  comeback victory requires you to be losing.

7 Henry and the Titan offense

I find it instructive that Henry was shut down in Week 16 by the Packers, had the worst DYAR of any running back in the league in Week 17 despite all the yards, due to two fumbles, and had the worst DYAR of any running back in the Wild Card round. Makes me think Vrabel has more to solve than his punting/4th down tactics this offseason.

18 Even in the immediate…

In reply to by Chuck Downfield

Even in the immediate context, he was given 35 carries in week 17 against Houston. (Yes it was a close, must-win game, but Houston's defense is so bad that surely anything Tennessee tried was going to result in success.) He had 107 carries over the final 4 weeks. That's an extreme workload. Forget the narratives, it's not in the least bit shocking he might be worn down.

13 I said to myself, "500 yards…

I swear, I said to myself after that game, "500 yards & single-game completion record be damned- I bet Roethlisberger will come out below replacement level". He sure did! 😂

34 yards/pick

I feel like there should be some quick heuristic to determine how much damage an interception does to a team.  A pick kills a drive while simultaneously (often) putting the opposition in good field position.  Maybe -50 or -75 yards?

Those four picks killed the Steelers.  Add the botched shotgun snap  (I blame Pouncey for that, though) and the Steelers lost a game to an inferior team because they made too many mistakes.  

I was surprised to see three QBs below Roethlisberger.  But I guess all those garbage-time yards against the softer D of the second half had to be accounted for somehow.

14 I’d put Lamar’s performance…

I’d put Lamar’s performance at least sixth best if not higher.
DVAO fails to capture the impact of true running QBs, most likely because it is comparing their running to scrambles. For most QBs a run is a positive result because it is either a sack (so not running) or escape and big gain. But Jackson (and Kap) are truly mix of running and passing which is not directly comparable to other QBs. 

15 Racist

“But Jackson (and Kap) are truly mix of running and passing which is not directly comparable to other QBs. ”

Allen, Heincke and Taysom Hill would all like a word with you.

63 QB Running

I second that.  I thought Allen's mobility behind the LOS was incredible, but his rushing was also lethal.  I hadn't realized he was stuffed three times; the pain of all his gains is what lingers most.

Who would anybody rather have had on Saturday, Rivers or Allen?  DVOA says Rivers.  I suspect 95% of the readers and writers here might at least have some issue with that.

16 I think it's only fair to…

I think it's only fair to count Tannehill's catching of his own pass as a catch in addition to a pass. He obviously should have just batted it down, although that's easier said than done under immense pressure, plus the block seemed like it was right when he let it go, so you might fear the refs calling it a fumble.

20 Tannehill's catch

No chance it would be called a fumble. BUT, he should not have caught the ball. The clock was around 2 min, so an incomplete pass would have produced a stopped clock and and 2nd & 10 situation. As it happened, it killed the 2 minute drill before it started--the Titans were now backed up, facing 2nd & 20, and had a good chance of giving the ball back to the Ravens with another chance to score before the half. (They did end up punting it back, but BAL couldn't do anything with the opportunity.)

65 Heads-up playing

I think it's totally fair when we roast RBs and WRs for going out of bounds when they need to kill the clock (and praise then when they give up an easy score, or take a knee to the same end).  DBs who intercept a pass late in the game with a lead might run a few yards by instinct, but then take a knee thanks to Marlon McCree.  (Often they have teammates helping with that decision.)

Well, we should also criticize Tannehill for succumbing to instincts and catching the pass.  What are the possible outcomes and odds of them?  The only positive outcome is he catches a pass 10 yards deep and gains at least 11 yards.  Pretty long odds.  Incomplete pass (2nd and 10) is the baseline, and everything else is worse.

77 I think it is an unusual…

I think it is an unusual enough circumstance to not warrant particular criticism. There's not going to be any coaching time devoted to QBs dealing with batted passes (whereas I'm sure there is plenty to devoted to WR/DB end of half clock management). 

Also Tannehill absolutely needs to deal with the batted ball somehow. Catching it for a large loss is vastly preferable to risking an interception if there are defenders in his face. 

23 Respectively disagree.  I…

Respectively disagree.  I love Jackson as a QB, but DVOA's assessment of him as having been about equal to to slightly below replacement level against TEN is a reasonable assessment of his performance, in my opinion.  How he accomplished what he did differs from many QBs, but what he accomplished against TEN, in aggregate, wasn't anything more than what you should expect from a replacement-level QB.  And I think DVOA picks that out in an objective manner that by-passes the "wow" factor that influences our brains when we see a big splash-play run.

28 I dunno man.

*Something* is off with how DYAR/DVOA capture Lamar, even if us critics aren't sure exactly what it is.

The Ravens offense was top-ten in scoring and points per drive this year, after leading the league in those categories last year.  Yet Lamar is 21st in passing DVOA with -0.7, *AND* – this is the eye-popper – 21st in rushing DVOA, among QBs, with -3.6.  Something about that is off, period.  I've no argument with Lamar's rushing efficiency being lower than last season.  What's suspicious is it being below average (A) at all, and (B) when his rushing is the primary driver for a top ten offense.

(By the way, it would be reasonable to wonder whether the Ravens total scoring and points-per-drive are unduly inflated by the Ravens D & spec teams giving the offense a lot of short fields.  But the Ravens D has not been THAT dominant this season.  And, y'know, relative to Ravens history this year's unit isn't really that good.  The Ravens have fielded defenses that did much more work giving the offense short fields to work with, without those offenses coming anywhere close to these scoring levels.)

It's important to note that most QB runs are scrambles.  And scrambles are high-yardage and high-efficiency plays.
https://www.footballoutsiders.com/dvoa-ratings/2020/effect-scrambles-dvoa
Most QBs are *not* carrying the rock on dive plays.  Lamar gets a lot of carries because he's a great runner.  But then his "normal" carries get compared against other QBs scrambles, and his lower yards-per-carry on those plays reflects negatively on him.  The net effect is that his rushing DVOA is lower because he's such a great rusher.  Not exactly what you want.

I dunno what to do about this.  

As an off-the-top-of-my-head suggestion, I would say maybe separate QB runs into two different buckets?  Scrambles and other runs?  Calculate separate rushing DYARs for scrambles and other runs?  Then add them together?

By the way, I suspect that "non-scramble QB runs" would tend to be fairly successful plays.  Sneaks on 4th&1, QB draws in the red zone, that kind of thing.  A high success rate: lots of first downs and TDs on non-scramble QB runs.  Lamar might still wind up with lower DVOA on his "other runs" than most QBs get.  But it might still get closer to capturing his actual impact on a game.

I'd love to see a rushing DYAR calculated on scramble plays where Lamar is compared with other scrambling QBs, and then a separate rushing DYAR calculated on "other runs" were he's compared with RBs, and add those two together for his "real" rushing DYAR.  But of course it's easy to toss out ideas where other people do the work.  🙂

76 Justin Tucker and Harbaugh add to points per drive

In reply to by JimZipCode

The Ravens points per drive are effected by Justin Tucker ending many of them with a virtually automatic 3 points, or by a virtually automatic 7 instead of 6 on a TD.  How many points are left off of the board on missed kicks leaguewide, as compared with the Ravens.  

Then we must also add Harbaugh's love of analytics by keeping drives going with successful 4th down attempts, thus adding to points per drive.

I do not know if this is true, but if points per drive is simply points scored/drives, remember that the Ravens returned a KO for a TD, have 3 fumble recovery returns for a TD and have a Bowser interception returned to the 1.

The Bowser interception surely counts as a bogus 7 point drive, I have no idea what the other ones do for the points per drive stat.  Regardless, all of these plays add to total points.  Conversely, taking a knee at the end of a game/end of a half will cut into points per drive.  Absurdly, looking at the stats for the Wild Card game, the Ravens were 1-3 in the red zone.  They got a FG, a TD, and were charged with a failed red zone drive by ending the game by taking a knee in the red zone.

DVOA is a much better assessment of offense than points per drive and total scoring.  The Ravens scored only 20 points this week with 19% DVOA on offense.  Lets thank our best friend for the week, Mike Vrabel for punting twice on 4th and 2 and giving the Ravens long fields from which to work.    I do not expect Sean McDermott to be as detrimental to the Ravens points per drive this week. but instead be much more detrimental to the Ravens game winning chance.

The Ravens ended the game in the red zone, then took a knee and the victory and took a knee to end the half so that by official stats they were charged with two drives of no points.  The last drive to end the game was clearly a success

25 DVOA has trouble with Lamar

DVOA & DYAR seem not very well calibrated for a QB like Lamar.  Lamar has a lot of performances that DYAR deems shitty, in games that the Ravens won against good teams on the back of Lamar's performance.

That sounds like a criticism, but I don't really mean it that way.  There hasn't really been a QB "like Lamar" in the NFL.  The most-similar in usage are Vick, Kaepernick & Randall.  Those are instructive examples, but I think Lamar differs from those guys.

Remember back in the Andy Reid Philly years, how DVOA/DYAR consistently would (seem to) over-rate the Eagles offenses?  Rank them #1?  I think there's some similar mechanic going on here.  The Ravens use Lamar on a lot of "constraint" runs, which by themselves aren't very efficient.  But they open up and enable a lot of other plays, some of which hit big.  DVOA/DYAR ding Lamar for the inefficient runs, which is very reasonable.  But maybe don't fully take into account the huge plays, which are set up off of the inefficient runs.  I'm also pretty sure there's a "Lamar effect" on the Ravens RBs, which would be hard to capture directly.

That's all pretty hand-wavey.  But I do think there's something there.

27 I think the main issue is…

I think the main issue is his rushing DVOA is compared against other QBs, where it comes out low. QB rushing is usually very efficient compared to other rushing plays. But the fact is the Ravens use Lamar more as an RB than as a QB who just happened to scramble. So the sheer volume of his rushing attempts produces a lot of value compared to a team that simply hands off to the RBs instead.

29 Beat me to it!

You stated this much more succinctly than I did.  And earlier too.  🙂

Yeah.  Lamar's "regular" rushing workload is being compared with other QBs' scrambles, and showing up as less efficient.  It's not an accurate way to assess him.

75 DVOA numbers are scary thinking about piles of cash for Lamar

I posted this in the DVOA column, and now I realize what a long discussion was happening here with Lamar, so I am posting it here as well:

Football outsiders QB DVOA and DYAR numbers for 2020 are telling me that Lamar Jackson's most comparable QB's are:

1. BEN (Blah Efficiency Now) Roethlisberger

2. Jared (Grinding On Four Fingers) GOFF (note that numbers compiled are with 5 healthy fingers)

3. TEDDY (Tolerably Efficient Dink Dunk Yards) Bridgewater

4. A combo for which I have no acronym, a combo of 5 games of Dak Prescott and 9 games of Gardner Minshew.

Note that the above QB's are the only ones that are have a passing DVOA of between +2 and -2.  Do not include my imaginary combo of Dak Prescott and Gardner Minshew since that is not a real QB.  The point is that this combo will get you 14 games of Jackson like numbers.

Jackson's rushing adds nothing to his DVOA this year.

This is horrifying as a Ravens fan.  We hope for last year's Jackson like play, not part of this year's Jacksonville like play.

FO 2018 numbers are not kind to him either, even Joe Flacco was better.  The fumbling machine that Jackson was make him awful by DVOA.  I must admit, had the refs not blown dead a fumble that would have been returned for a TD against Cleveland in the final game of the season, the Ravens would not have made the playoffs that year.  However, they were 6-1 in the regular season with Jackson, 4-5 with Flacco.

By FO 2019 numbers, Jackson was excellent

It is hard to judge a QB by won - loss record, but the Ravens record under Jackson is tremendous

6-1 in 2018

14-2 in 2019

11-4 in 2020 (missed 1 game)

31-7 overall in regular season

1-2 in playoffs, since he can not, oh wait he can, win a playoff game.  We know that no one at FO ever said or would say that he couldn't win a playoff game, just foolish media.

FO numbers tell me that the Ravens are winning by defense and special teams with a barely above mediocre offense.

The truck is warming up, it will arrive with the piles of cash at Lamar Jackson's feet within two years.  

FO outsiders numbers are telling me that the Ravens are playing with a very different version of Joe Flacco, but yet are getting the same Flacco results. In other words, winning with a mediocre QB on his rookie contract.

Once the money goes to the QB, some of the money now applied on defense goes away and it will be difficult to invest in a much needed wide receiver.

Is FO missing something, that is, that Jackson makes the other Ravens running backs better because the defense keys on stopping Jackson's runs, or are Raven's fans in for a period of mediocre at best football once Jackson is off of his rookie deal?

Why would anyone expect Jackson to improve, as he ages, his running skills will decline so unless his passing skills improve dramatically, he will not be better.  Why would anyone invest the boatload of $$$ needed to retain his services if they are relying on improved passing skills at this point of his career?

Do the Ravens have a 3 year window to win the Super Bowl that closes after the 2022 season?

Am I misreading the FO numbers?  I would love a FO quick analysis on Jackson.  After his subpar regular season (21st in passing and rushing DVOA), he is ranked 11 of 12 for QB's in wild card week in the Quick Reads column.  Yet the Ravens had offensive DVOA of 19% for the week.  How did they do that?

30 Ten QBs with higher *rushing* DVOA than Lamar

Here are ten QBs with a higher *rushing* DVOA than Lamar:

  • Kirk Cousins, age 32
  • Matthew Stafford, age 32
  • Ryan Finley
  • Jacoby Brisset
  • Danny Dimes
  • Ryan Fitz, age 38
  • Carson Wentz, on his repaired ACL
  • Teddy Bridge, on his repaired MCL
  • Andy Dalton, age 33
  • Aaron Rodgers, age 37

These guys are all great athletes, and some of them are distinguished with HOF-level judgement and football IQ.  But, come on.

31 Sneaks & scrambles, vs other runs

Sorry for perseverating on this topic, and wallpapering the comment section.  But I think I figured out what my real suggestion is, regarding QB rushing.

The two rushing plays that *ONLY* QBs do, are sneaks and scrambles.  Those play types should be pulled out and graded as their own category.  Then other rushes by QBs should be graded with all other rushes by everyone else, RBs and WRs.  A final QB rushing grade would be a composite of his sneaks & scrambles score, and his other-rushes score.

Does that make sense?

38 I think this is a real…

I think this is a real statistical conundrum. if you change Lamar's rushing baseline to that of a running back, he probably looks like the greatest running back of all time. Maybe that's what should happen.

Comparing him to a quarterback baseline is a mistake because even with Wilson, there isn't a qb like Lamar. I suppose in history there's only been Michael Vick and Randall Cunningham that are even worthy comparisons.

 

I can think of a data science way to do it, but it wouldn't be easy and would take a lot of time

45 If you go far enough back,…

If you go far enough back, most QBs look like Lamar.

And if you go back really far, they actually do look like Lamar.

But QBs who ran a lot were never really rare. Not super common, but there were usually a handful kicking around.

53 Just separate out certain plays

We can't pull out ALL of Lamar's rushes.  Lamar also sneaks & scrambles, just like other QBs do.  A lot of his biggest plays are scrambles (cf the TD this past wkend).  PFR lists Lamar with 49 scrambles for 353 yds this year; 39 for 429 last yr.  I don't know how many sneaks; not many, but not zero either.  Anyway, those should be graded against other QB sneaks & scrambles.  Those are Lamar's "normal QB rushes", running plays like every other QB gets.  He would get a DYAR/DVOA on those plays, measured against the performance of other QBs. 

Subtracting those from his rushing totals, that leaves 110 rushes for 652 yds this season (last season, 137 for 777).  Those should get a DYAR/DVOA, measured against the population of other players who rush on non- sneaks & scrambles.

So then total rushing DYAR for a QB would be the sum of those separate DYARs (sneaks&scrams + "other plays").  And total rushing DVOA would, I guess, be the snap-weighted composite of those two scores.

The nice thing is, that would work for all QBs.  The older QBs who pretty much only sneak or scramble, their scoring would be about the same.  Those QBs who do get designed runs, their runs would be measured against the right baseline.

48 I searched for a bit and…

I searched for a bit and couldn't find it referenced, but my memory is telling me that Aaron made an adjustment to offensive DVOA this year that's not quite what you're suggesting, but nods toward the difference between scrambles and designed QB runs. I believe plays charted as scrambles now count in team passing DVOA, while all other QB runs count in team rushing DVOA. However, if I'm still remembering correctly, this adjustment was not made to the individual player stats.

If that's correct, you might be able to kind of infer where Jackson would finish in the DVOA leaderboard for RBs. Baltimore finished #3 in team rushing DVOA, and Jackson was their leading rusher in terms of attempts and yards. Dobbins and Edwards finished #1 and #7 in DVOA, respectively. Obviously a decent chunk of Jackson's value came from his scrambles, and Baltimore's final team passing DVOA ranking was a little bit higher (17th) than Jackson's personal ranking in QB passing DVOA (21st), but not by a ton. So purely on designed run plays, maybe Jackson would have finished as a top 5 RB by DVOA?

35 Russell Wilson

Anybody live near him?  I'm curious as to whether there's a giant pod in his backyard.  Clearly he's the victim of a body snatch.  

46 Lamar Jackson

Just adding some bullet points to the conversation...

* Jackson had 102 designed runs this year, second to Cam Newton's 105. He averaged 6.4 yards on those runs with a success rate of 50%; league average for QBs was 4.1 and 56%. (Newton only averaged 3.7 yards, but had a 60% success rate -- he was used in short yardage a lot more than Jackson was.)

* Jackson had 49 scrambles, fourth behind Deshaun Watson (62), Russell Wilson (54), and Kyler Murray (50). He averaged 7.2 yards on those plays with a success rate of 55%; league average was 7.1 and 60%.

* Overall, Jackson averaged 6.6 yards per non-kneeldown carry this year. That's good -- the average for a QB was 5.6 -- but not in the top 10 of QBs who qualified for our rushing tables. 

* Jackson's success rate on runs was awful. His success rate on both designed runs and scrambles was below average, and since designed runs (which are generally less efficient than scrambles) made up so many of his rushes, his overall numbers really nosedive. Whether you use the standard measure of success rate or the running back definition, which accounts for plowing into the line to kill clock with a late lead, he was bottom-seven in both. We remember Jackson's highlights, but he also has a lot of runs that go nowhere.

* Though he has cut way down on fumbles, he still fumbles a lot, with five on running plays. Among QBs, only Taysom Hill and Jalen Hurts had more (which, considering they started only eight games between them, is a horrifying stat for Taysom Hill and Jalen Hurts). 

* Since team offensive DVOA is calculated compared to all plays, but QB runs are compared to other QB runs, it's quite possible that on any given Jackson run, Baltimore's offensive DVOA will go up, but Jackson's individual numbers will go down.

49 * Since team offensive DVOA…

In reply to by Vincent Verhei

* Since team offensive DVOA is calculated compared to all plays, but QB runs are compared to other QB runs, it's quite possible that on any given Jackson run, Baltimore's offensive DVOA will go up, but Jackson's individual numbers will go down.

I'm not sure I've ever heard the theory behind DYAR being calculated on a per-position basis, and not on a yards-are-yards basis.

51 Thanks for this, Vince. If…

In reply to by Vincent Verhei

Thanks for this, Vince. If we were pretending Jackson was a RB, would his 50% success rate on designed runs be closer to league average for RBs? Looks like Dobbins and Edwards both had higher success rates than Jackson, but fewer yards/attempt (although only slightly lower in Dobbins' case). Now I'm thinking Jackson wouldn't be a top-5 RB by DVOA.

55 Thanks Vincent

In reply to by Vincent Verhei

Your comment very precisely replies to various points I was trying to make above.

59 Team DVOA up but individual's down

In reply to by Vincent Verhei

I think the part that runs counter to expectation is where Baltimore's offensive DVOA goes up on a hypothetical Lamar run, but his individual numbers go down.  Their offense is #3 in rushing DVOA, and he is their highest-volume ball carrier, and he's – a below-average rusher?  That does not compute.  I can see how DVOA got there, based on the stats you gave.  But something important is not being well captured.  (Not saying I have a good answer, though.)

Other comments:

Jackson's success rate on runs was awful. ... he also has a lot of runs that go nowhere.

Speaking as a Ravens fan, I can attest: Lamar has a ton of runs that go nowhere. 

he still fumbles a lot, with five on running plays.

Does this include bad snaps?  I remember Matt Skura delivered a few bad snaps in a row with his cut hand, in New England.

71 That chart got me thinking, who had the most success?

So I started, but no time to finish, the first chart conversion to TD%.

Player TD% YPA INT% Sack% 

Russell Wilson 7.59 7.08 4.8 3.4 

Eli Manning 7.56 6.78 4.7 3.5 

Drew Brees 7.3 6.92 5.2 2.6 

Aaron Rodgers 7.2 6.95 3.9 3.9 

Roethlisberger 6.0 8.04 3.5 7.0 

Tom Brady 5.9 6.21 3.8 2.9 

Tony Romo 5.4 7.26 2.6 1.3 

Brett Favre 4.5 7.01 6.2 5.7 

P Manning 4.3 6.03 7.5 3.8 

P Rivers 2.6 5.35 5.2 4.9 

85 Trubisky's final drive

By my count Trubisky was 9-10 for 92 yards and a TD (plus 1 7 yard run) on that final drive.

I wonder what his DYAR was without it. I know DVOA has found garbage time plays to be significant, but I still wonder what it would look like, because New Orleans clearly didn't care on that drive.