QBs in Focus: Russell Wilson
Though we certainly miss football during the offseason, it’s always a good time to take a step back and analyze our plethora of data.
We’re often so busy grading and collecting data during the season that we’re unable to put a lot of the information to good use. With that said, we’ve decided to declare June as “QB Month” as we break down NFL quarterbacks every which way.
We’re going to examine quarterbacks from a number of situations before looking at each of them individually. The grades and numbers should reveal each quarterback’s strengths and weaknesses from the 2013 season.
As we go through this series, it’s important to understand the relationship between QB Rating (NFL’s version) and PFF Grade.
While QB Rating is obviously supposed to be a QB statistic, it’s actually a better gauge of what the entire offense did in a given situation. This is the type of information that is actually extremely valuable to our NFL team customers as their game planning efforts must go towards stopping an entire passing offense, not just the quarterback.
If the quarterback throws an easy dump off pass to the RB who then weaves through the defense for the touchdown, it’s certainly not a great indicator of quarterbacking skill as it is the running back and defense accounting for the majority of the work on the play. Of course the QB Rating will look quite shiny in that situation.
On the other hand, PFF Grade is a good indicator of how well the quarterback actually performed in a given situation. Whether they throw an accurate pass that was dropped, or perhaps an inaccurate one that should have been intercepted and the defense dropped, the PFF grade will account for those situations with a positive and a negative grade respectively while QB Rating will simply reflect the 0-for-1 passing.
It’s important to distinguish between QB Rating and PFF grade, though there’s a good chance they’ll match up in most situations.
After taking a look at the entire league in various situations, it’s time to break down each quarterback individually.
All categories with a * are normalized so that the league average is 0.0.
• Second-best grade on third down at +13.1, including a +5.6 grade on 3rd-and-long.
• Led the league with +9.9 on plays that broke out of the pocket and ranked second on designed rollouts at +4.7.
• Showed well at pass depths, namely 11-20 yards (+7.6), 21-30 yards (+6.6), and 31-40 yards (+3.1).
• Threw extremely well outside the numbers, including +12.1 to the left and +10.3 to the right.
• Third-highest grade when pressured (+4.5) and also graded well from a clean pocket (+19.2).
• Led the league with a +21.5 grade against the blitz, including a +14.4 grade on third down.
• Showed well on 7-to-8-yard drop-backs (+10.6), and drop-backs of 9 yards or longer (+6.0).
• Led the league with a +14.5 grade on plays lasting at least 3.6 seconds.
• Graded at +23.9 when throwing to wide receivers (by alignment).
• Tied for league lead with a +6.0 grade on crossing routes, and also showed well on hitches (+5.6) and go routes (+10.7).
• Graded at -2.7 on throws of at least 40 yards in the air.
• Graded at -0.1 on throws in between the numbers.
• Struggled in the first quarter (-9.1).
• Posted a negative grade when pressured from a traditional rush (-4.1).
• Graded at only -1.0 when throwing to tight ends.
• 35.9% of drop-backs came from under center; seventh-highest in the league.
• Had highest percentage of designed rollouts (14.5%) and second-highest percentage of drop-backs that broke the pocket (13.5%).
• 15.9% of attempts traveled at least 20 yards in the air; sixth-highest in the league.
• Threw 53.1% of passes outside the numbers; ninth-highest in the league.
• Faced pressure on 43.8% of drop-backs; second-highest in the league.
• Faced the second-highest percentage of blitzes in the league at 39.2%.
• Only 13.1% of drop-backs went 9 or more yards; eighth-lowest in the league.
• Faced the second-highest percentage of pressures that came in two seconds or less (14.7% of drop-backs).
• Used play action 34.1% of the time; highest in the league.
• Threw to slot wide receivers 26.0% of the time; above the league average of 19.7%.
• Threw third-highest percentage of quick outs at 8.8%.
• Threw 43 crossing routes, 41.9% of which came off designed rollouts.
For the entire set of “Quarterbacks in Focus” posts, click here.
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