QB Pressure Profiles: AFC South

The AFC South's quarterbacks are next up in Steve Palazzolo's QB-by-QB look at performance under pressure.

| 3 years ago
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QB Pressure Profiles: AFC South



We’re back at it again with a deep dive into the PFF Database as we continue to reveal a plethora of numbers regarding pressure and its effect on the quarterback. To recap, in the last few months we’ve looked at pressure’s impact on the passer from different angles and from that data, drew the conclusion that the left tackle might be overrated. From there, we broke it down by quarterback and revealed the league’s best and worst when pressure comes from different places. Now it’s time to take the next step and look at “pressure profiles” for every quarterback in the league.

As always, sample size caveats apply in some cases, but the numbers draw from our five years of data going back to 2008. There are certainly trends for some quarterbacks, while others are a bit more scattershot in their performance when pressure comes from different angles.

When looking at the numbers, keep in mind that the PFF Grade is the best indicator of a player’s performance, as we isolate the quarterback’s impact on every single play. If he throws a wide receiver screen that goes for an 80-yard touchdown, the numbers will look pretty, but the QB is credited with the same grade he would earn if it was stopped for no gain. Similarly, a perfectly thrown pass that should be a first down but is dropped and intercepted will likely earn a positive grade despite the ugly INT in the stats. All of the stats are nice to get some perspective, but PFF Grade always trumps as more reliable.

With that said, let’s take a look at the quarterbacks from the AFC South and how they fare under pressure. (You can check out the AFC East here.)

 

Matt Schaub, Houston Texans
Strength: LG
Weakness: LT

There aren’t a lot of trends in Schaub’s game, but he’s not particularly strong when pressured from left tackle. That bodes well for the Texans as the position is manned by our No. 8 pass blocking tackle, Duane Brown. He’s shown well when pressure comes from left guard, but it’s mostly a mixed bag among the other positions. The thing that stands out for Schaub is how well he performs from a clean pocket and many fans may be surprised to see that he ranks eighth in the league since 2008 with a +101.3 grade in such situations. He comes in just above the last two Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks, Eli Manning and Joe Flacco, so maybe Schaub is capable of going on a similar run through the playoffs if the Texans’ offensive line can keep him clean.

PressureDrop-backsComp%YdsYds/AttTDINTSack%Knock-down%PFF GradeQB Rating
ALL263165.11%192767.8107574.7%12.8%67.393.8
NP182871.52%154208.585410.0%0.0%101.3103.5
P80347.49%38565.9221615.3%42.0%-34.067.1
LT12049.48%5946.14415.8%40.8%-7.565.4
LG7257.81%4286.7135.6%25.0%2.763.8
C4543.90%2355.7128.9%26.7%-2.050.4
RG8447.14%3084.43015.5%35.7%-3.874
RT9854.32%5026.21016.3%42.9%1.577.3
TE2352.94%1599.40021.7%34.8%1.085.2
RB4945.00%3037.61214.3%38.8%-5.258.6
QB2018.18%121.10145.0%70.0%-9.41.7
MUL12345.57%5446.95127.6%59.3%-1.684.6
UNB16942.68%7714.9637.1%42.6%-9.762.9

Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts
Strength: LG
Weakness: RT

No quarterback faced more pressured drop-backs than Luck’s 268 last season, and the former No. 1 overall pick handled it fairly well in his rookie campaign. Many signal callers see a major drop-off when pressured, so Luck’s -1.6 grade is actually an encouraging sign. Though it’s difficult to draw conclusions from one season of data, Luck struggled most with pressure from right tackle. So, the free agent addition of RT Gosder Cherilus could go a long way toward ensuring his improvement in Year 2.

PressureDrop-backsComp%YdsYds/AttTDINTSack%Knock-down%PFF GradeQB Rating
ALL76453.89%46626.823195.6%16.5%12.775.1
NP47560.69%33237.216110.0%0.0%14.484.2
P28939.45%13396.17814.9%43.6%-1.656.0
LT4033.33%973.60115.0%47.5%0.229.4
LG3453.57%30610.9212.9%32.4%3.5101.2
C1623.08%644.91118.8%68.8%-1.741.2
RG2734.78%1064.6007.4%25.9%-0.250.3
RT4938.46%2466.31214.3%40.8%-3.247.6
TE1162.50%9311.6009.1%18.2%4.0102.6
RB1558.33%836.90013.3%40.0%0.879.5
QB350.00%126.00033.3%33.3%-0.168.8
MUL5137.50%2287.12227.5%56.9%-2.357.8
UNB4332.35%1043.11114.0%46.5%-2.539.3

Blaine Gabbert, Jacksonville Jaguars
Strength: None
Weakness: LG

 

PressureDrop-backsComp%YdsYds/AttTDINTSack%Knock-down%PFF GradeQB Rating
ALL78453.84%38695.621177.9%13.9%-40.270.2
NP53055.98%29555.714130.0%0.0%-19.171.1
P25447.40%9145.37424.4%42.9%-21.167.4
LT3055.00%1397.00023.3%43.3%-0.976.9
LG4041.94%1234.01212.5%32.5%-4.837.4
C1645.45%696.30125.0%37.5%-0.728.2
RG2350.00%1226.82017.4%26.1%-2.0109.0
RT5056.76%2597.00022.0%42.0%-1.878.5
TE250.00%94.5100.0%0.0%-0.6102.1
RB1040.00%346.81040.0%80.0%0.0103.3
QB450.00%42.00025.0%25.0%-1.256.3
MUL4429.41%362.10147.7%63.6%-5.515.1
UNB3546.67%1194.02014.3%37.1%-3.679.7

Chad Henne, Jacksonville Jaguars
Strength: LG
Weakness: RT

 

PressureDrop-backsComp%YdsYds/AttTDINTSack%Knock-down%PFF GradeQB Rating
ALL151959.17%91976.742476.3%15.0%1.475.2
NP105764.96%74567.232270.0%0.0%23.985.6
P46241.42%17415.2102020.6%49.4%-22.543.3
LT2731.58%653.40322.2%51.9%-3.23.1
LG5442.11%2446.41120.4%51.9%1.061.7
C3145.83%994.1219.7%32.3%-2.967.9
RG5451.16%3087.22216.7%46.3%-0.570.7
RT9050.72%3425.01314.4%30.0%-3.151.7
TE1633.33%564.70112.5%50.0%0.814.6
RB4035.71%1736.21227.5%55.0%-1.339.7
QB110.00%00.00154.5%81.8%-6.50.0
MUL6026.47%1364.00336.7%70.0%-6.77.0
UNB7940.91%3184.83315.2%54.4%-0.152.5

The Jaguars’ open competition for the quarterback position will likely come down to Gabbert and Henne, though neither player has shown particularly well when pressured. Gabbert’s worst numbers come from left guard where the Jaguars have featured the league’s worst pass blocking guards the past two years (Will Rackley, -18.4 Pass Block in 2011, and Mike Brewster, -14.4 Pass Block in 2012). Left guard happens to be the one position on the offensive line where Henne has posted a positive grade. His biggest struggles have come from right tackle which has been another major weakness in Jacksonville in recent years, hence the selection of No. 2 overall pick Luke Joeckel to man the spot. For Gabbert to take the next step in his development he has to make better use of a clean pocket as his -19.1 grade against no pressure is well below the league average.

Jake Locker, Tennessee Titans
Strength: Unblocked
Weakness: RG

The drop-off in Locker’s performance when pressured is rather drastic as he goes from a QB Rating of 89.9 to 38.7. His inability to handle pressure was a big knock on his game when he was drafted out of Washington and it’s held true to this point in his career. Though he’s struggled evenly across the board, both guard positions have given him slightly more trouble, and the Titans have overhauled the position with free agent left guard Andy Levitre and first-round right guard Chance Warmack. If the new additions are able to give Locker more time to throw, he’ll have a much better chance at living up to his first-round potential.

PressureDrop-backsComp%YdsYds/AttTDINTSack%Knock-down%PFF GradeQB Rating
ALL44655.53%27247.214116.3%13.2%5.278.4
NP31961.36%23177.91160.0%0.0%20.589.9
P12735.29%4074.83522.0%46.5%-15.338.7
LT1142.86%436.10127.3%54.5%-2.023.8
LG1325.00%342.8117.7%23.1%-3.132.6
C1044.44%424.7010.0%50.0%0.019.0
RG2329.41%1227.21013.0%30.4%-3.576.6
RT1627.27%80.70118.8%25.0%-1.71.7
TE250.00%52.5000.0%0.0%0.456.3
RB960.00%367.20033.3%44.4%0.682.1
QB80.00%00.00075.0%100.0%-3.439.6
MUL1471.43%628.90135.7%78.6%-4.158.9
UNB2123.08%554.21019.0%52.4%1.570.4

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| Senior Analyst

Steve is a senior analyst at Pro Football Focus. His work has been featured on ESPN Insider, NBC Sports, and 120 Sports.

  • Brian

    Blaine Gabbert : Strength: None.

    Well…..that’s probably not a good sign.