May 19 2011

Quarterback Stats

Published by at 10:39 pm under Sports

I have to say I have become really demoralized when I think of the state the NFL is currently. This bickering between the owners and the former players association can only be compared to a divorce going very badly. Both sides fighting and pointing fingers isn’t nearly as fun as watching teams battle on the gridiron.

I’m trying to look past that. I’m certain they will find a way to get games played and come to some sort of agreement. It’s a multi billion dollar sport and I have hope that people aren’t that stupid to just throw that away. Where there is money, there’s a way. In that hope, I have been looking at stats to hopefully help once the family fantasy football league inevitably starts up again this fall. I found an opinion article by some arm chair writer on the bleacher report ranking the active QB’s. I didn’t put much stake in such articles, but they are still entertaining to read.

What I did, though, was start to look at some of the stats of all the active quarterbacks who are coming into this season. Specifically, I was looking at the career TD passes to interception ratio and the injuries they suffer at games or training and the attention they receive for this, although for people that suffer from medical errors, they can get legal help for this from sites as In any football league, this can mean a huge deal when trying to pick who is going to be your big stud to lead you to victory. Not that it has helped me in recent years, but let’s just call that variance and ignore that bit for now.

This is what I found out though. There are 5 active quarterbacks who have a career TD pass to interception ratio of at least 2:1. 4 of them, I doubt any one would be surprised at and many people probably wouldn’t have much trouble guessing. The last one surprised me a bit.

These are the ones that are likely easy to guess:
Tom Brady
Peyton Manning
Philip Rivers
Aaron Rodgers

Right there you have 4 of the likely first 7 QB’s to be picked in any league. There are a couple of players like Brees and Vick who narrowly missed this list that would be in the mix too.

The last name missing from this list is Donovan McNabb. For all the ungrateful complaints from the Eagles fans, they owe a lot of their success over the years to McNabb, but he isn’t really what you would think of as a top tier QB. On paper, he is right up there with just about any one as this stat proves. Does that mean I’m going to bump him up on my draft list? Probably not too much unless he goes somewhere favorable. To be honest, I thought the Redskins would have been as favorable as any spot. Shannahan and Reid run similar offenses and both are typically QB friendly. Maybe he’s just getting old and has reached the end of his career.

What do these stats mean? Possibly nothing. Seneca Wallace nearly made this list, for fuck sake. And there probably should be some attempt qualifier for this since Stephen McGee (who the fuck is that?) technically also made this list with 2 TD’s and no Ints but that is statistically irrelevant (only 44 attempts). Or maybe he’s a wasted asset riding the pine behind Romo.

Truth is, they likely mean a ton but they are only a piece of the puzzle. There are a bunch of other details that affect this as well. Unfortunately, data isn’t always easy to access. If some one knows of an open database or even spreadsheets where I could make my own, I would love to do more of this. Statistical analysis may sound boring, but you can do some cool things with it if you look for the right stuff.

Gotta do what I can to get that edge in the fantasy football league.


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