DET-IND grades: Andrew Luck earns week’s highest QB grade in Colts’ loss

Indianapolis excels on offense, but defense struggles to contain Matthew Stafford and Lions' running game.

| 2 months ago
(Dylan Buell, Getty Images)

(Dylan Buell, Getty Images)

DET-IND grades: Andrew Luck earns week’s highest QB grade in Colts’ loss

Detroit Lions 39, Indianapolis Colts 35

Here are the top takeaways and highest-graded players from the Lions’ win over the Colts:

Detroit Lions

Quarterback grade: Matthew Stafford, 77.5

It was a solid opening game for QB Matthew Stafford, who didn’t really need to make many tough throws on his way to victory. He spent most of the afternoon working the short game, as he went just 4-of-7 for 94 yards on passes that traveled over 10 yards in the air. He went 27-of-30 for 247 yards and all three touchdowns while throwing short. Stafford’s offensive line held up well, as he was only pressured on 19.5 percent of his dropbacks. It wasn’t a phenomenal day of quarterbacking for Stafford, but he made enough throws when he had to to come away with a victory.

Top offensive grades:

C Travis Swanson, 84.2

FB Michael Burton, 84.0

RG Larry Warford, 80.4

LT Taylor Decker, 80.3

RT Riley Reiff, 79.9

Lions’ offensive line shows up strong in opening game

There’s no doubt that the Lions will be happy with how their offensive line played against the Colts, as they were the unsung heroes of this victory. They were solid at pass blocking, allowing just one sack and eight total pressures all game. C Travis Swanson didn’t allow a single pressure. As good as they were pass blocking, however, they were even better opening up holes for the run. Only G Laken Tomlinson graded below 78.0 in run blocking, as the unit helped a rushing offense that finished with 116 yards and two touchdowns on 24 carries.

Top defensive grades:

LB DeAndre Levy, 76.7

S Tavon Wilson, 76.0

LB Kyle Van Noy, 75.2

S Rafael Bush, 74.2

NT Haloti Ngata, 69.8

Pass coverage is a big question mark for the Lions after subpar performance

While there were definitely some good moments, it was an overall disappointing day for the Lions’ pass coverage. Star corner Darius Slay had an average game, allowing 4-of-9 targets to be caught for 75 yards, and that sort of set the tone for the rest of the defense. LB Tahir Whitehead was picked on often, as he saw nine targets as well, but allowed seven catches for 71 yards and touchdown. They were playing a really good passing offense in the Colts, but the Lions will not be able to allow 385 passing yards and four passing touchdowns every week and still expect to win.

Indianapolis Colts

Quarterback grade: Andrew Luck, 96.0

Luck shows no sign of last year’s struggles as he finishes as this week’s highest-graded QB

What a performance by Andrew Luck that was wasted in a loss. Luck was executing high-level throws all afternoon, picking apart the Lions’ pass coverage with ease. Luck was incredibly effective when throwing deep down the middle of the field, where he completed 11-of-13 passes for 203 yards and three touchdowns on passes at least 10 yards downfield. Luck didn’t force any passes or make any real poor decisions all game. He was making every throw he needed to, and was able to march his team down the field consistently. After a tough season last year for Luck, this incredible performance bodes well for the Colts going forward.


Top offensive grades:

QB Andrew Luck, 96.0

C Ryan Kelly, 79.3

WR T.Y. Hilton, 78.6

LT Anthony Castonzo, 78.0

RG Denzelle Good, 75.6

Strong offensive line play allows Luck to go to work

One of the reasons for Luck’s struggles last season could have been poor offensive line play, which caused him to constantly worry about pressure and affect his play. That wasn’t the case today, as the unit played very strong against a very good Lions’ defensive line. The Colts offensive line allowed just one sack and seven total pressures on 51 passing plays. That pass-blocking efficiency of 89.2 ranks fourth among all teams that have played so far this week. The left side duo of LT Anthony Castonzo and LG Jack Mewhort was particularly strong, allowing just one hit and one hurry combined.

Top defensive grades:

CB Antonio Cromartie, 81.2

S Mike C. Adams, 81.0

ED Trent Cole, 77.8

S T.J. Green, 72.8

LB Sio Moore, 72.6

Colts front seven disappoints, as they fail to do much of anything against Lions’ offense

Aside from OLB Trent Cole, who impressed with a QB hit and three other hurries in a strong pass-rushing effort, this was a less-than-ideal performance from the Colts’ front seven. Aside from Cole, the unit combined for a mere one sack, three hits and two hurries. They let Stafford sit in the pocket with time, which forced their secondary to cover for much longer than they should’ve had to. Against the run they fared no better, as the Lions were able to open up big holes all game long and run through them at will. With such a strong offensive unit, the Colts just need their front seven to improve a little bit, as just one big stop would have been enough to come up with a win today.

| Analyst

Bryson has been an analyst at Pro Football Focus since 2014, and has also been a contributor to 120 Sports.

  • Blaze Gunn

    Evan Mathis and Andrew Luck Two of PFF’s favorites can do no wrong

    • Tim Edell

      Andrew Luck was one of their lowest rated QBs last year… Not sure where that comment came from?!!??

      • Blaze Gunn

        He has 55 INT in 56 games played and continues to be labeled as a top 10 QB for comparison sakes Russell Wilson has 35 INT in 65 games played

        • pbskids4000

          You clearly don’t go on this site very often if you think PFF favors Andrew Luck. PFF has been one of his biggest crtitics since entering the league.

          • Tim Edell

            Agree sir!!

        • Remy Bennett

          And Russell once again was carried by his defense yesterday. While Lucks offense put up 35 points in a loss, and gave his team the lead with 40 seconds to go

          • Blaze Gunn

            I watched both games but obviously you didn’t see why Seahawks offense couldn’t put up points none of it was Russells fault

        • Tim Edell

          In fact PFF doesnt grade Luck as a top 10 QB the last 2 years so for the bias???? Get your facts straight Junior!!

          • Scott

            And yet PFF ranked luck 12 very high in their preseason qb ratings proving they know their qb ratings have no credibility either

      • bluger

        They were left with essentially no choice – Luck’s performance last year was so atrocious they couldn’t keep the facade up. Blaze’s point is spot on. In this case Luck “picked apart” the defense — by throwing to literally *wide open* receivers (I can recall one single pass that wasn’t to someone standing completely alone — one covered by Diggs where Diggs should have played the ball but went for the tackle instead). There were at least three passes Luck threw that should have been easy interceptions if the Lions DBs didn’t have their heads up their asses.

        I think PFF is garbage, so I should state that outright. They go into games with a bias, and then see exactly what they want to see. Stafford managed the game literally *perfectly*, with a very Tom Brady type performance (protip, PFF: When you have a strong lead, you don’t throw high risk passes, like the sort Luck was forced into throwing). Oh, what a middling performance. But Luck…boy did you see that guy throw to the wide open TE standing without a defender in 20 yards in any direction? WOW.

        • Trevor Paulus

          “I think PFF is garbage, so I should state that outright. They go into games with a bias, and then see exactly what they want to see. ”

          Couldn’t have said it better. They have an agenda, but it’s not putting out an accurate analysis of actual football, that’s pretty obvious by now…

        • shizwaldo

          “In this case Luck “picked apart” the defense — by throwing to literally *wide open* receivers (I can recall one single pass that wasn’t to someone standing completely alone — one covered by Diggs where Diggs should have played the ball but went for the tackle instead).”

          “…When you have a strong lead, you don’t throw high risk passes, like the sort Luck was forced into throwing).”

          So which one was it, was Luck throwing to wide open guys or forcing high risk passes into coverage?

  • Wolverine

    Minor quibble, but the Colts allowed two sacks, not one.

  • GreenBayManPackers

    Really? Stafford and Luck had basically the same game. Except Stafford led his team to the win. Yet their grade is that different? And Brees had a better game than Luck, but Luck was the best this week huh? PFF is such garbage.

    • Remy Bennett

      Look at the defenses they played against though. Stafford played a terrible colts unit stricken with injuries, and benefited from a strong running game. Gore never really got going, and the Lions defense was healthy. Luck was also (as they say above) incredibly accurate on deep throws, whereas Stafford benefited from a lot of YAC due to the colts poor tackling.

      both QB’s were very good, but give Luck credit for going up against the tougher defense

      • bluger

        “Look at the defenses they played against though”

        Yeah, look at the defenses they played. In snap, after snap, after snap Luck had targets standing without a DB with 10 yards. The Colts may have had injuries, but they had much better DB coverage than the Lions did all night long.

        The Lions had a great run defense, but that was an absolute bottom of the barrel pass defense, and that wasn’t because Luck did great.

        • Trevor Paulus

          Not to mention the clean pocket Luck had for most all of the afternoon. The Lions pass rush was woefully ineffective.

          • rsconrad3

            And the colts pass rush was great??

      • Scott

        Except pff repeatedly says don’t take strength of schedule into account. Plus how many actually think any qb could have played better than Stafford did here in this game? What a joke

    • Trevor Paulus

      Great example of their grades not taking into account anything relevant during the game- Stafford was throwing short, high percentage plays most of the game once the Lions had a good lead. Smart QBs don’t force low-percentage passes in that situation- so PFF is basically punishing him in the “ratings” for playing good, quality football. The flip side of that same coin is that their praising Luck for playing from behind and having to force those high percentage throws. Luck had a great game, but Stafford was clearly the better QB yesterday- he completed 15% more of his passes than Luck did (Stafford had the same amount of completions as Luck on less passes) AND drove his team down the field for the win, but apparently those things are not factored into PFF’s “but we’re way smarter than everyone else” grading system.

    • Joe

      Stafford played a hell of a game; there’s no denying that. However, Luck played just as good while completing much more difficult throws and adding one more TD compared to Stafford. PFF is 100% correct with their grade.

      • Trevor Paulus

        Stafford was considerably more efficient with his passes and led the Lions on back-to-back game winning drives. Luck was great, no doubt about it, but Stafford was simply better. PFF is punishing Stafford in their rankings for not playing from behind and having to force difficult throws to try to get his team back in the game, which is silly from a football perspective.

        I’ve said it before and I’ll continue saying it- PFF’s rankings are a classic case of not being able to see the forest through the trees. It’s very obvious they employ analysts without any sort of football background, which leaves their rankings lacking the situational context inherent to each individual game.

        • Joe

          > Stafford was considerably more efficient with his passes and led the Lions on back-to-back game winning drives.

          Luck did the exact same thing; his defense just decided to let him down more than Staffords.

          > Luck was great, no doubt about it, but Stafford was simply better.

          I disagree and so will everyone else that isn’t a Lions’ fan. Luck may have had a slow start, but his play from the half the 2nd quarter onward was phenomenal. You can’t sit there and tell me the passes he was throwing and completing were not better than Stafford’s.

          This line here “11-of-13 passes for 203 yards and three touchdowns on passes at least 10 yards downfield” is what separated Luck from Stafford today.

          • Trevor Paulus

            “I disagree and so will everyone else that isn’t a Lions’ fan.”

            Except for, you know, the NFL-

            Stafford’s passer rating: 128.6
            Luck’s passer rating: 119.5

            So that kind of shoots a pretty big hole in your theory there.

            Face it, your Colts lost to the team whose QB played better. That’s not taking anything away from Luck’s day, but he was the 2nd best QB in that game. Both the score and the stats prove as much.

          • Joe

            As if passer rating is the end all be all. Wilson went 20/26 287 yards 1 TD 125 QB rating last year versus you guys and they won 13-10. He did just enough not to fuck up and you’re gonna tell me his 125 QB rating performance was better than Luck’s 119.5 on Sunday? Get out of here with that nonsense.

            Listen, we can go around all day about this, but you’re kidding yourself if you really think Stafford was better than Luck on Sunday. Luck didn’t dink and dunk. He was dropping bombs all day and anyone that watches the tape will see that Luck was superior just like he’s been since he entered the league compared to Stafford.

          • Trevor Paulus

            Haha, ok Homer Joe. Have fun petitioning the league to change the outcome of the game because you can’t accept that your QB played very well, yet was still the second best QB on the field that day.

            Lions 39, Colts 35

            Win- Stafford and the Lions
            Loss- Luck and the Colts

            And no amount of crying about your QB play will ever change that one. :)

          • Joe

            I’m glad you’re really excited for a regular season win. At least my QB and team can win a playoff game though.

          • Trevor Paulus

            Living in the past… I see.

            This game happened in 2016, though, not 2014. They don’t give merit points in the NFL for what your team used to do.

          • Trevor Paulus

            Football Outsiders had Matthew Stafford as the best quarterback in Week 1 according to their DYAR statistic. Here’s what they had to say about Stafford’s performance:

            “Stafford finished this game on fire, completing eight of his last nine passes for 114 yards. Seven of those completions gained at least 10 yards and a first down, including a go-ahead touchdown. The eighth was a 9-yard gain on first-and-10. Over and over, he and the Lions exploited the Colts’ vulnerable underbelly for catch-and-run gains. He went 7-of-8 on passes over the middle for six first downs and 108 yards — 39 through the air, 69 after the catch. Stafford was fantastic when throwing to his running backs, but we’ll save that for the next table.”

          • Joe

            Dink and dunk Stafford was not better than Luck on Sunday. He just wasn’t. 25 of his passes were 5 yards or less. Luck was completing 11 of 13 passes 10+ yards down the field for 3 TD’s and 203 yards. PFF got it right.

          • Trevor Paulus

            You seem to have a thing for being wrong, hey? PFF got it right and the rest of the country got it wrong is what you’re saying, then? Ok bud. I’ll leave you to your fantasy land with your 0-2 Colts and the over-rated Andrew Luck. Have fun not winning a terrible division this year.

          • Joe

            Are you talking shit when you just lost at home to the Titans? Luck put up more points away against the Super Bowl Champs and the #1 defense. From the looks of it, PFF got it right last week giving Stafford the lower grade because he looked like shit against a much weaker defense at home.

          • Trevor Paulus

            I’m talking shit because we beat you in your stadium last week and you can’t seem to quit flapping your gums about how Luck was better than Stafford, despite being far less accurate and less efficient. Everyone but Colts fans can see that Stafford was better in that game. And clearly you didn’t bother to watch the Titans game on Sunday- Stafford led the league in dropped passage yardage (5 drops for 90+ yards according to your precious PFF) and the refs took back-to-back TD passes off the board on him as well. He wasn’t the reason we lost that game.

            Constantly talking out of your ass about your win-less Colts is pretty amusing, though. Please keep it up, I’m enjoying laughing at your blatant homerism…

          • Joe

            That was 5 days ago. You seem to keep wanting to bring up who was better when you know who was better. No one on the planet besides Lions fans though dink and dunk Stafford was better than Luck last week. Great job on throwing 24 passes less than 5 yards to get the bulk of your yardage. Luck did it in the air and further down the field. Time to move on because you’re wrong.

            Also, go win a playoff game for once before talking so much shit because your team sucks.

          • Trevor Paulus

            You’re beyond clueless, dude. Everyone except Colts fans and PFF thought Stafford was better. His numbers were better and he won the game. Only PFF and their nonsense ranking system have Luck as the better QB in that game. Just look at all the comments here besides yours. You’re wrong, we all see it, and now you’re just continuing to make a fool of yourself.

            And give up the playoff game crap- Luck won playoff games a couple years ago, and has stunk since. In the present season your Colts are one of the worst teams in the league. 2014 isn’t relevant to what’s happening now, but that seems to be all you got. It’s just sad, man. You’re making excuse after excuse for your losses while Houston runs away with your weak-ass division.

            We beat your Golden Boy head to head in your stadium. Your team is 0-2. Those are facts, and neither support the cause you just won’t give up on. Maybe try pleading your case to your mommy? She’ll be a lot nicer to you than I am being…

          • Joe

            Fact: Luck had more passing yards.
            Fact: Luck had more TD’s.
            Fact: Luck made more deeper throws downfield and was more successful.
            Fact: Our defense was worse and depleted missing a lot of starters that couldn’t tackle.
            Fact: Stafford dinked and dunked all game where 26 of his passes were 5 yards or less which ended up with 213 YAC.

            If you actually watched the film, Luck outclassed Stafford in every way possible. The only reason people say Stafford was better because you guys won and they saw 31/39 3 TD’s 340 yards without watching the game. Luck was more impressive and it’s not even close. PFF’s grade reflected that.

            “We beat your Golden Boy head to head in your stadium. Your team is 0-2. ”

            Good job. We did the same to you in 2012 at your stadium. Go win a playoff game.

          • Trevor Paulus

            “Blah, blah, blah, blah…” seems to be all you got. If Luck was so much better than Stafford, how come his team lost? Nobody watching that game can say that the Colts had a worse defense, that’s just ridiculous. Our DBs were horrible and Luck was hitting wide-open receivers, and especially his TEs, all game long. If Luck’s downfield throws were so much more impressive (for whatever bizarre logic you’re using there), how come he couldn’t win the game? Because that’s what it’s all about- winning the game.

            The Lions offense is centered around the short pass and getting our playmakers the ball in space underneath. Clearly it was very effective against your Colts. Luck was forced to chuck it down field, which he did very well, because his team was down big early. That wasn’t by design nearly as much as it was out of desperation. PFF’s bogus rankings don’t factor in the context of what was going on in the game, and you’re clearly too much of a Luck Loving Homer to see past that. Stafford was near perfect in that game, and got recognized for it by the NFL and pretty much every media outlet not named PFF.

            And going all the way back to 2012 when you beat us in Detroit is just making my point for me- you’re living in the past because the current Colts are a really, really crappy team. They feature a college level defense and a QB who used to be a rising star, then fell off the map last year and hasn’t looked much better this year, despite putting up big desperation stats playing from way behind.

            You need to give it up, guy. You’re clearly out of your depth here and aren’t offering anything except “But PFF says” and “We won some playoff games once.”

            The fact of the matter is that in this current season, 2016, Stafford > Luck, and the Lions > Colts. If you want to keep arguing about it I’m just going to refer you to the scoreboard. Stafford out-dueled Luck in his own house, and no amount of your playoff wins in years past have any bearing on that. We won, you lost, and you seem very butt-hurt about all of it. I know it sucks, but if you’d quit flapping your gums I wouldn’t feel compelled to keep proving you wrong…

          • Joe

            > If Luck was so much better than Stafford, how come his team lost?

            Defense can’t hold a lead for 37 seconds.

            > The Lions offense is centered around the short pass and getting our playmakers the ball in space underneath.

            Thanks for proving my point. It’s great that Stafford can dink and dunk against a terrible defense, but then a real QB showed up and was throwing dimes down the field for more yards and TD’s.

            > I know it sucks, but if you’d quit flapping your gums I wouldn’t feel compelled to keep proving you wrong…

            You’re not. You can keep trying though.

          • Trevor Paulus

            Scoreboard, Homer, scoreboard. Stafford > Luck = Lions win, Colts lose.

          • Joe

            Stafford has never been better than Luck. Luck has been rated higher than Stafford ever since he entered the league. When will Stafford win a playoff game?

          • Trevor Paulus

            Never? Hmmm… how about week one 2016 when the two played head to head and Stafford beat Luck on the road with superior QB play.

            Yep, you guessed it, SCORE BOARD!

            Your Colts suck bad this year man, and your repeated references to past seasons are really proving that out. If you’d just give it up I’d be happy to quit pointing out that we came into your house and beat you because we had the better QB that day…

          • Joe

            You lost to the Titans. At Home. Luck in his career has never lost to the Titans. How could Stafford be so bad that he loses to the Titans? His defense even held them to 16 points. Luck outscored both of you against the #1 defense in the league.

            Keep reaching, bro. You’ll get there.

          • Trevor Paulus

            Haha- right back to the past. That’s because your team sucks so bad in the present that you have to keep reaching back to what Luck used to be, once upon a time.

            But it’s 2016 now and your win less Colts are at the very bottom of possibly the worst division in the NFL. 0 and 2. Lost to Matt Stafford and the Lions. Head to head we beat the Colts in Indy- nothing Luck did in 2013 or 2014 is relevant to that fact, as that game is what this whole argument is centered around.

            You’re like a puppet on a string- I call you out for not being able to defend your Colts on how bad they are right now, in 2016, and point out how you have to keep referencing the past because of how bad your basement-dwelling team is in the present. How do you respond each and every time? By telling me what Luck and the Colts have done in seasons past. That’s great, but it has no bearing on the fact that Stafford played a better game than Luck and stole the W on the road in week one.

            I don’t get why you’re such a glutton for punishment, but when you’re team is at the bottom of a very bad division (1 good team in the AFC South) you’d be much better off to just give it up. It’s not like I’m saying Luck had a bad game- both QBs were great, Stafford was simply just better- the proof is in the numbers- much higher completion percentage, better passer rating, and, most importantly, the win. You got nothing to argue except what Luck has done in the past. The past is over. The current Colts stink. The Lions certainly aren’t great, but at least we’re a competitive team in the best (maybe 2nd best behind NFC West) division in the NFL. The Colts only competition this year will be from the Jaguars for a top-5 draft pick.

          • Joe

            Bro, you can keep writing these long essays all you want, it’s not going to change that dink and dunk Stafford wasn’t better than Luck in that game. Just because he completed more passes for less yardage doesn’t mean he gets the nod. Sorry, bud. No one else saw it that way.

            Also, for you to come talk shit to me after you lost to the Titans at home, that’s funny. You’re not gonna survive the North this year. The only team you’ll beat is the Bears and you’ll finish 3rd in the division. Maybe next year Stafford will get his first playoff win.

          • Trevor Paulus

            Pop Quiz time!

            1.) What is the Colts record so far this season?

            2.) How many of those losses were to the Detroit Lions?

            3.) If a fan of the has-been Colts won’t quit whining about how his 0-2 QB was better than the QB who beat him in his own house, how much will he cry when the Jaguars and Titans both finish ahead of his team at years-end?

          • Trevor Paulus

            And you’re making fun of us for losing to the Titans. We beat you, and the Titans beat us, so what does your own logic tell you about your team there? (Answer: the Colts are reaaaaly bad this season)

          • Trevor Paulus

            You can keep yapping all you want, but the Lions beat the Colts in Indy to open the season. That’s locked in, no ifs, ands, or buts about it. Your team has yet to win a game this season and here you are acting the fool about how good Luck has been in those losses.

            As much fun as this is, it’s starting to feel like I’m picking on the slow kid in class, which kind of kills said fun. I guess I’ll leave you to your coloring books now and call it good.

          • Joe

            > As much fun as this is, it’s starting to feel like I’m picking on the slow kid in class, which kind of kills said fun. I guess I’ll leave you to your coloring books now and call it good.

            I’m the slow one yet you keep writing these long ass replies to me and responding in 3 comments just as you did now. Your pretentious writing almost makes you look mentally challenged at this point. There is no way anyone would look at this thread thinking I’m the slow one in this conversation just like no one thought Stafford was better than Luck on Sunday as proof by PFF’s grade.

          • Trevor Paulus

            “This line here “11-of-13 passes for 203 yards and three touchdowns on passes at least 10 yards downfield” is what separated Luck from Stafford today.”

            Lions 39, Colts 35.

            That line right there is what separated Stafford from Luck on Sunday.

          • Joe

            No. The Colts’ defense is what separated Luck from Stafford.

          • Trevor Paulus

            Well, I could agree with you there, but then we’d both be wrong.

          • Joe

            You’ve been wrong a lot in this thread.

          • Trevor Paulus

            Wrong about Stafford completing a much higher percentage of his throws than Luck? Wrong about Stafford leading the game-winning drive with under 40 seconds left? Wrong about Stafford’s passer rating being higher than Luck’s?

            Or was it that I was wrong about the score being 39 to 35 in favor of the Lions?

            I think you’re trying a bit too hard to find some consolation in this loss, i.e. “My QB was better than your QB” rather than just accepting that PFF is way off on their rankings on this one.

          • Joe

            I’m over the loss. I’m moved on to next week. I’m just here letting you know that Stafford was not better than Luck on Sunday and PFF is 100% correct on their rating. Any decent evaluator of the game would say Luck was better if they watched the film. Guaranteed.

          • Trevor Paulus

            “Any decent evaluator of the game would say Luck was better if they watched the film. Guaranteed.”

            Says the butthurt Colts homer.

          • Joe

            Says the guy on here complaining that Stafford was better when he wasn’t. Lions’ fans are the only ones that are saying that. No one else is saying Stafford was better than Luck.

          • Trevor Paulus

            It’s not as if the Lions defense was worth a crap all game. You make it seem like Luck was picking apart good coverage while he was under tough pressure all afternoon, which wasn’t the case at all. His receivers were WIDE open all afternoon and he had all day to throw from a clean pocket.

            I’m sure you’re bummed about a tough loss, but your homer cup is running over on this one…

  • Trevor Paulus

    Further proof that the book smart, football ignorant “analysts” PFT employs to watch game film do not understand what they’re watching. Tavon Wilson was graded as our 2nd best defender yesterday. The same Tavon Wilson who was benched during the game for ineffective play. These guys just plain do not have the background to comprehend what’s going on on the field. They clearly think they get it, but their grades relative to what is actually happening on the field are almost completely irrelevant. A positive or negative PFT grade doesn’t correspond to a good or bad performance by a player at all. What’s the point of these grades, in that case?

    • Scott

      Astonished Wilson 2nd best grade. He was so bad. Who’s watching these games

  • Jeff

    Hmmm … Stafford played a nearly perfect game and didn’t take any unnecessary risks and won because of his performance, and all of this in spite of a terrible Lions’ defensive performance. Luck was basically throwing to wide open receivers all game long. He played great, but I couldn’t say his performance was any better than Stafford’s was … and definitely not by that many points. It’s a little difficult to not see any bias here.

    • Trevor Paulus

      +1 gold star for Jeff.

    • Jeff

      And what of Riddick and Abdullah’s grades? There seems to be a lot of love for the Lions’ O-line for “opening holes” for them, but I seem to remember more credit should’ve gone to the RBs. They ran well when they (actually) had holes, but they were even better when they didn’t … which seemed to happen many times.

  • FantasyFreak

    PFF hasn’t been accurate for more than 2 seasons now… The Lions won, in Indy, yet their QB was graded 20 points lower, because he was only 4 for 4 for 94 yards on downfield throws. Also, the Lions defense graded lower… again, won on a week one road opener here. Three secondary players graded over 72 despite the opposing QB having a 128+ QB rating while throwing to 8 different receivers and putting up 39 points?

    • Trevor Paulus

      This guy gets it.

  • Donny

    PFF needs to start doing a much better job at analyzing the most analyzed position in sports, the quarterback position. The refusal by you guys not to change your ways makes your site lose credibility when you don’t call this performance a near perfect game.

    Mind boggling to think you’d be more impressed by a guy forcing throws into tight coverage. Not sure can do much more than Stafford did in this game. He completes nearly 80 pct of his passes in the game meaning nearly all positive plays, only takes 1 sack, never came close to turning football over, went 4 for 4 in the red zone, orchestrated 5 td drives and scored 37 pts on the road including the game winning drive in 37 seconds and yet that’s nothing special. That’s sickening to think this isn’t getting tons of credit.

    What a joke. Please take different look how you evaluate qb play as this is beyond embarrassing.

    • Trevor Paulus


      100% spot-on, Donny.

  • PresterJon

    The hate on PFF grades is hilarious. For some reason people just refuse to accept objective measurements as long as the results constructs some narrative that says otherwise.

    • Dave

      Not Objective, purely invalid measurements…. I think when they did this they were in Colorado getting high.

    • Trevor Paulus

      You can’t look at these rankings and claim that they’re objective. They’re entirely too contradictory to not be very subjective.

  • Joe

    reputation grades. Luck scores higher than Stafford with a lower QB rating. Levy is highest rated Lions defender when he looked kind of lost and zoned out like heis mind was somewhere else the whole game. I thought PFF was about actual analysis and not just reputation?

    • Trevor Paulus

      Reputation grades! That’s a great way to summarize PFF’s grading system. They see what they think they’re supposed to see based on player’s and team’s reputations.

  • Malachi

    luck’s kidneys better be ready for the beating he’s gonna receive from denver on sunday

  • Jay

    It’s weird to see that PFF says that Andrew Luck was under so much pressure last year. PFF also said that luck was responsible for much of the pressure because he held the ball too long on far too many occasions. I’m confused by their analysis of last year’s Colts Oline.

  • Brendan Kruse

    You guys are idiots Stafford completed 80 percent of his passes and had the second highest QBR of any QB on Sunday. Not a great day of QBing are you flippin kidding me?!?

  • Gary Thompson

    Nice summary, Bryson!

    Question: it seemed as though the Colts defensive scheme did little to manufacture pressure. Do you have any stats that show how many times the Colts blitzed vs. Rushing only 3-4 defensive linemen?

  • Mike

    A QB that goes out and performs like Stafford did on a weekly basis would make the HOF and be the greatest QB ever yet PFF considers it not “phenomenal”.