Joe Gibbs awakes from long slumber, realizes it's no longer 1998

>> Monday

He totally hasn't had long enough to prove himself.

Every stat has its limitations, and every stat has a poster boy for its limitations. For passer rating, Mark Brunell is that cover boy.

When was the last time a guy with an 86.5 passer rating was so deservedly benched? How often do you think this has even happened? Ever?

Also, how old do you think Mark Brunell is? Were clocks even invented when he was born? (The answer to those questions are 36 and "yes--many, many years before." But he seems way older.)

6 comments:

Vinnie 12:45 PM  

Not that this post was supposed to spark discussion really, but at the risk of sounding fatheaded, I just want to clarify: I'm not saying that passer rating is bad or that Mark Brunell has never been a good QB. My point is that even the most brilliantly conrived stats meet their match eventually. And while I don't believe anyone should necessarily agree with me, Mark Brunell and his 86.5 rating are--from what I've observed--comparatively hurting his team measured against a hypothetical, decent but lower-rated QB. At some point, low interception totals and high completion percentage at the expense of high-risk/high-reward throws aren't worth a whole lot--even if they boost QB rating. If that makes any sense.

Then again, I don't understand football. It's too violent for me.

Nathan 3:59 PM  

"At some point, low interception totals and high completion percentage at the expense of high-risk/high-reward throws aren't worth a whole lot"

And that is why I love Brett Favre, and anyone who says he's washed up can suck on an exhaust pipe.

Matt Zuchowski 6:46 PM  

I'd definitely take the Rex Grossman roller coaster ride in favor of Brunell. While I do like having QB's who will take care of the ball, they need to be able to throw the ball 10 yards down the field. Also, if the Vikings had a live body at QB this season, they'd be breathing down the Bears neck.

Matt 8:57 PM  

Here's the deal: Brunell's quarterback rating is decent because he throws an inordinate amount of screens and short swing routes in Al Saunders' offense (there's a reason Tony Gonzalez and Priest Holmes have such gaudy numbers in the early aughts). That much is obvious.

However, Nate and Zuch, don't confuse QB Rating with Completion PCT. Favre's always had a consistently solid completion percentage, it's just that some years his rating goes in the tank because of all the INTs.

Also - an interesting point is that making a bunch of completions for short yardage and just "moving the sticks" like Al Saunders prefers won't by nature give you a good rating. Rating, with its ridiculously long formula necessitates the success of long pass plays to get a high effeciency rating.

As such, I don't think (given the specific parameters of the offense that he plays in - i.e., that he's not making tough throws and he's also a pocket passer now [a fact that should necessitate a higher rating]) that a mid 80's rating is all that great for Brunell. The simple fact that all he's doing is dropping back (probably 5 steps for the most part) and dumping to a TE or RB and that's it. In a system so physically unchallenging a QB should have a much much higher rating to be considered a success.

But, what the hell do I know, I just work here.

Vinnie 9:19 PM  

Yeah, excellent points. All I know is that the rating formula is crazy complicated and therefore almost impossible to pick apart for flaws in a theoretical/mathematical sense. I guess we can really only go on what we've observed subjectively and how it correlates to passer rating. And my fuzzy conclusion through the years has been just what we've said--passer rating alone overvalues the Brunell/Aikman/Neil O'Donnell types.

Also, I just noticed I changed-out "poster boy" for "cover boy" mid-paragraph in the original post. Man, I'm never gonna make espn.com with slop like that.

Nathan 10:23 AM  

Note: Favre's worst completion percentage for a season was 57.3% in 1999. His career percentage is 61.3, so yeah, +1 to Bechtel for pointing that out (although I was really only referring to his high interception totals).

Also, as far as Brunell goes, it helps when you have backs like Ladel Betts and Clinton Portis that give you a combined 471 YAC yards.

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