Narrative Street: Are Roethlisberger and Brees too bad on the road?

The two star QBs have the rep of being great at home and awful on the road. Tyler Loechner explores whether that is unique to them.

| 1 week ago
(Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

(Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

Narrative Street: Are Roethlisberger and Brees too bad on the road?

A couple of months ago, Narrative Street made a stop on the home/road discussion, dissecting whether or not players really do perform better when they play at home — and whether or not it’s a big enough difference to warrant consideration for fantasy purposes (mostly DFS).

We tested the narrative for all four key fantasy positions: QB, RB, WR, and TE. But we typically most often hear of home/road splits for specific quarterbacks — namely Ben Roethlisberger and Drew Brees.

The narrative: Ben Roethlisberger and Drew Brees have the most drastic QB home/road splits

It doesn’t take a genius to know that Roethlisberger and Brees do indeed have noteworthy home/road splits. So while it’s fair to mention the narrative when discussing these two players, are we putting too much emphasis on just Roethlisberger and Brees, and overlooking some other important quarterbacks who have significant home/road splits? In short, are they really that different?

Let’s find out.

The research

I studied all quarterback production over the past five seasons (2012-2016). Most noteworthy quarterbacks studied had 2,000 (or more) pass attempts in this span with at least 15,000 total yards — so sample isn’t an issue. Players like Roethlisberger and Brees have had home/road split issues dating back well before 2012, but looking at data from last decade is fairly meaningless, and it doesn’t allow us to compare Roethlisberger and Brees to the new names in fantasy.

I made the minimum threshold 400 pass attempts thrown to include rookies like Dak Prescott and Carson Wentz. I’m not going to focus on these players, since the sample size is certainly not big enough here to draw conclusions, but I included them to see if there were any potential intriguing notes. More on that later.

The findings

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Tyler Loechner is a lead writer at PFF Fantasy. He has played fantasy football since 1999 and has been a part of the PFF Fantasy staff since 2010. Tyler was also previously a fantasy football featured columnist at Bleacher Report.

  • paul

    Are PFF articles abnormally worthless? Yup

  • evo34

    How do we know that Ben and Drew aren’t just at the tail of a normal distribution of home/road splits? You would never expect a group of individuals to be tightly clustered at the mean in a game with such variance.

    The real test would be odd vs. even year correlation for every QB with sufficient sample for last 20 years.

    • evo34

      Furthermore, if they are in fact reliably predictable by location, both QBs would be that much more valuable in fantasy. You’d have a stud QB for eight specific games. I’d pay a lot for that.