Archive | November, 2013

Using Quarterback Rating to Find Consistency and How It Ranks Andy Dalton

13 Nov

I’m not usually into mainstream statistics or wins/losses when it comes to applying them to Quarterbacks and their level of success. The Quarterback Rating is one that often gets thrown around and misrepresented by fans and media. It can be a flawed statistic. It doesn’t take into account when or how an interception was thrown. It doesn’t include rushing yards or touchdowns or fumbles. It’s a blanket statistic to show how well the team’s passing offense played in a particular game.

In recent years, I’ve come to the obvious conclusion that modern day football is massively reliant on passing success and if your QB plays better than their QB. That’s it. If you can limit the interceptions and force mistakes upon the opposing QB, you’ll win most of your games. I’ve used Interception Ratio to amplify these conclusions and simplifying Quarterback Rating is another way to fortify my beliefs.

Simplifying QB Rating
I decided to split this statistic up into two simple categories:
Bad Games – Less than 70.0 QB Rating. (22.7 winning percentage among QBs I looked at)
Good Games – Better than 90.0 QB Rating (73.7 winning percentage among QBs I looked at)

I divided them because rarely does a season’s QB Rating depict the ups and downs of a Quarterback’s season. Example: Andy Dalton’s 2013 QB Rating has hovered around an 87 for much of his career. Yet, he’s only had 6 career games between an 80-90 QB Rating. So how has he really played?

Andy Dalton
The ups and downs of Dalton’s young career have left a rift in the Bengals fan base and analysts. The good games are great and they’re winning, but the bad games are terrible and they’re losing. This could be said for any signal-caller as the team goes as the QB goes. But, what surprised me was how often Andy Dalton has a Good Game (90+). He’s had 18 in his first 44 career games and the Bengals are 16-2 in these games. They’re virtually unbeatable when their passing game is efficient combined with the talented roster they own. To put that into a percentage, Dalton and the Bengals are at their peak 40.9% of their games.
Then I looked at the Bad Games (-70). Now I wasn’t so surprised that he’s had 16 career games of this type. Inconsistency has been his issue and the Bengals can’t overcome these games as they’re 4-12 when Dalton’s QB Rating is below 70.0 — and that’s 36.4% of their games where it doesn’t matter how the rest of the team played. They’re more than likely losing.

As I’m posting these numbers on twitter, somebody asks – “So is that good? What’s a normal expectation?”

That’s always the question to ask, so I looked up numbers from 8 other Quarterbacks in Dalton’s league, 4 Quarterbacks in the Elite category, and then 4 more in the Above Average range. Here’s what I came up with…

*Stats from 2011 to 2013*

Leaders in Good Games

1. Peyton Manning – 88.5%
2. Aaron Rodgers – 80.5%
3. Drew Brees – 72.1%
4. Russell Wilson – 71.4%
5. Colin Kaepernick – 65.0%
6. Tom Brady – 63.8%
7. Matt Ryan – 63.6%
8. Tony Romo – 61.9%
9. Robert Griffin – 56.0%
10. Jake Locker – 52.6%
11. Cam Newton – 48.8%
12. Joe Flacco – 46.8%
13. Andy Dalton – 40.9%
14. Ryan Tannehill – 38.5%
15. Andrew Luck – 30.8%
16. Christian Ponder – 27.3%
2004-2006 Carson Palmer – 60.0%

Least Amount Of Bad Games

1. Aaron Rodgers – 2.4%
2. Peyton Manning – 3.8%
3. Drew Brees – 4.7%
4. Robert Griffin III – 12.0%
5. Tom Brady – 12.8%
6. Matt Ryan – 13.6%
7. Tony Romo – 14.3%
8. Colin Kaepernick – 15.0%
9. Russell Wilson – 17.9%
10. Jake Locker – 26.3%
11. Cam Newton – 26.8%
12. Andrew Luck – 26.9%
13. Joe Flacco – 27.7%
14. Ryan Tannehill – 34.6%
15. Andy Dalton – 36.4%
16. Christian Ponder – 42.4%
2004-2006 Carson Palmer – 24.4%