With this my 9,999th post on this great forum Iíve decided to do something large. Very large. Iíve decided to attempt to create a stat that would allow people to properly compare players at the same position over a large period of time. Roger Staubach vs Steve Young, Peyton Manning vs Dan Marino. There are several problems that are encountered when attempting this with raw data or raw stats namely the major differences in rules, training, etc. between the two eras of football. So to remedy this we have to make the comparison between players that are under the same conditions namely, the other QBs of their era. But, if I am comparing a QB to the players to other QBs playing at the same time how do I make the jump to another generation without encountering the same problems? Enter the dominance rating (DR). The Dominance Rating (or so Iíve code named it until I can come up with another, better, name) starts with a few assumptions.
1. Average QB is average - Regardless of if it is 1974 or 2007 a QB who has the average number of yards, TDs, comp%, and INTs is average for that season.
2. Its better for the team if a player sucks hard for one season and then leaves as oppose to kinda sucking for 5 years.
3. All average is created equal.
When we establish the fact that an average QB is average regardless of the era it gives a baseline for comparison. How much better than average has Roger Staubach been for his career? ok now how much better than average has Steve Young been during his career. Great now we have our answer. ďBut, Broth, how do we quantify exactly how much better than average one QB is than another?Ē you may ask well let me tell you.
First, we must start by determining exactly what stats we want to use. I decided to use the statistics that I find most important.
comp% - Accuracy is very important for a QB. If you arenít completing passes you arenít winning games.
yds/G - I had to go with yds/G as oppose to pure yards because of the fact that prior to 1978 the NFL had a 14 game season and if I wanted to go further back there was a point where the NFL had a 12 game season as well. It also prevents players from being overly penalized for injuries.
TD/G - You obviously want your QB to score and the per game part is already explained.
INT/G - Picks are actually a negative statistic thus point values are calculated differently. But obviously turning the ball over in football is a bad thing.
Taking these statistics I compiled a list of every starter for that season (starter = player who started in half or more of the games in a given season.) I took these four statistics and found an average for each then generated a score for each stat for each starter.
score = (stat/avg)-1
This means that an average score is zero a below average score is negative and an above average score is positive which works out rather well when we find a total career DR.
For interceptions the formula for the score had to be changed.
scoreINT/G = [-(INT/G)/avg]+1
Even with this change average score = 0.
A dominance rating for the season would be...
DR(season)= scoreINT + scoreYPG + scoreTDPG + scoreCP
then to find the DR for a players career it would just be the summation of the DR of every season that you were the starter for half or more of the season. If you werenít the starter for that amount of games then your DR for that season is zero.
Now for the moment you have been waiting for the top 323 greatest passers since the merger.
List with those with 1 season (except last year's rookies) were eliminated.
OK so to get past some of the obvious complaints.
Q. ZOMGZ (insert player x here) is way too low!
A. John Elway? Yes way too low I think the 90ís QBs get hurt a lot by playing with Dan Marino but that also in a way validates the score because that shows how dominant Mario was in that era.
A2. You also have to keep in mind that many of the players that are currently playing are going to likely see their number increase over time. Basically the scores are if their career ended at this very instant this is where they would be.
A3. Also keep in mind that the data set only includes stats from 1970 - 2012 so guys like Johnny Unitas likely only played one season.
Q. Why are there so many more below average players than above average ones?
A. Outside of the fact that below average QBs donít last as long as good ones the really good QBs also bust the curve.
Q. The formatting sucks on that list.
A. Blame google sheets.
Q. But playoffs, super bowls and winz!
A. Playoffs and super bowl victories are not taken into account as they are team stats.