Tag Archives: patriots

Who Has the Best Performance of the Last Decade?

Many of you know that I really love Brian’s blog, Advanced NFL Stats. Brian does some amazing things with numbers. I’m not sure where he gets his numbers, what statistical program he uses to squeeze out answers, but his information is sure intriguing. His basic premise is that football is just like baseball, that it can be broken down into numbers. So, he asks, who has had the best performance since 2000?

From Advanced NFL Stats (his glossary is here [your going to need it!]):

Michael Vick blew up the Redskins Monday night with 333 passing yards, 4 passing TDs, 80 rushing yards, 2 rushing TDs, and no turnovers. It was an almost flawless individual performance from beginning to end, worth 29.4 Expected Points Added (EPA). How does it compare to the top individual performances since 2000?

The decade’s top performance belongs to Tom Brady, 2007 edition. His performance in the Patriots’ 59-12 win at Buffalo was worth 33.3 points. Here are the rest of the top performances:

Player EPA WPA WP Graph Vis Score Home Score Date
T.Brady 33.3 0.44 WP Graph NE 56 BUF 10 11/18/2007
P.Manning 32.1 0.35 WP Graph HOU 24 IND 43 9/17/2006
D.Brees 31.9 0.51 WP Graph NYG 27 NO 48 10/18/2009
P.Manning 30.8 0.35 WP Graph DEN 24 IND 49 1/9/2005
T.Brady 30.1 0.72 WP Graph NE 48 DAL 27 10/14/2007
P.Manning 29.7 0.47 WP Graph DEN 10 IND 41 1/4/2004
M.Vick 29.2 0.43 WP Graph PHI 59 WAS 28 11/15/2010
P.Rivers 29.0 0.49 WP Graph SD 48 SF 19 10/15/2006
T.Brady 28.7 0.32 WP Graph NE 49 MIA 28 10/21/2007
A.Rodgers 28.7 0.11 WP Graph GB 45 ARI 51 1/10/2010
B.Favre 28.6 0.55 WP Graph GB 41 OAK 7 12/22/2003
T.Brady 28.3 0.18 WP Graph TEN 0 NE 59 10/18/2009
B.Roethlisberger 28.0 0.54 WP Graph SD 28 PIT 38 10/4/2009
D.Brees 27.9 0.48 WP Graph DET 27 NO 45 9/13/2009

Interesting that one of the games were losses for the top performer. Notice Aaron Rodgers’ WPA was only 0.11 in his 28.7 EPA game against Arizona in the playoffs last year. That was thanks to the strip-sack-TD to end the game in OT.

Wondering about the worst performance? That would belong to Dallas’ Anthony Wright, whose 31-0 loss at Tennessee was worth -36.3 EPA and -0.42 WPA. It was a Monday night game, broadcast on Christmas night. Wright went 5 for 20, totaling 35 yards. He was sacked 4 times for 26 yards of losses. That’s a net of 9 yards passing. Wright was intercepted twice, once for a TD. He fumbled 3 times and lost all 3, 1 of them returned for another TD.

NFL: Let's talk about the playoffs

manning snowI wanted to post something thoughtful and witty about the NFL season. That was back when I thought I was going to be off today. Unfortunately, that was a couple of versions of the schedule ago. When my beeper went off at eight, it was clear that I missed a memo or two. So, instead of rolling out NFL predictions for today’s games, I will have to go over the playoffs. Hey, tell me where I’m wrong. Do you think that the Colts can turn it on and off at will? Are the Chargers the best team as you see it? Can we stick a fork in the Patriots?

AFC
Indianapolis ColtsPeyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts had a good year. They had an opportunity at a great year, but they decided to rest their starters. (Ask Bill Belichick about the wisdom of resting your starters in a meaningless game.) I think going undefeated during the regular season is a milestone, but it is more important to win the Super Bowl. It would be even more gratifying if the Indianapolis Colts could put together two or three seasons in which they win it all. They need to become a dynasty. I think they have that opportunity. Unfortunately, their defense just doesn’t seem to be up to the task. When the Indianapolis Colts put together that amazing run three years ago, their defense just got to it and came together. They need that defense to gel. If they’re able to do that, the Indianapolis Colts could be onto something very special.

San Diego Chargers — for some reason, every year the San Diego Chargers seem to start off slowly. They usually lose three or four of their first six games and people seem to forget about them. Well, this San Diego Chargers team may be unforgettable. Philip Rivers is playing as well as if not better than any other quarterback in the NFL. The NFL today requires a good quarterback in order to win. (The Miami Dolphins would be in the playoffs right now if they had a good starting quarterback.) They have a solid defense with outstanding special teams. If they have a weakness, I’m not sure that they do, it is at running back. I never thought I would say that LaDainian Tomlinson would be a liability. He just isn’t playing very well.

Cincinnati Bengals — I just spoke with my brother for about 20 minutes about football while I was typing this post. He is not all that psyched up about the Cincinnati Bengals but I am. I think because the Bengals do not have any superstars, they may have an advantage. They play together as a team. They have a solid defense and a great running game. This gives them the ability to control the clock. Cedric Benson may be their key. Cedric Benson and Larry Johnson may lead them deep into the playoffs.

New England Patriots — I know that with Tom Brady and Bill Belichick you can never count this team out, but I’m counting them out. The Patriot defense has been porous at best. Sometimes the offense plays well and sometimes they don’t. It looks like they’ve just lost Wes Welker. I think the Bangles, Chargers and Colts can handle the Patriots without much difficulty.

Baltimore RavensJoe Flacco is not playing as well as he did last year. I don’t know what the problem is: his receivers or his offensive line. Their running game is above average but their defense is not making the plays. The problem with the Ravens is their defense. They need Ed Reed. They need the great linebacker Ray Lewis to play like he did four or five years ago. They can clearly make some noise in the playoffs, but I don’t see them going past the first or second round.

New York JetsMark Sanchez is not quite ready. The Jets have a good solid defense. They have a great running game. The Jets need their quarterback to step up and play big. I just don’t think that Sanchez is ready yet. If they’re able to keep everything in place, the Jets are two or three years away.

Tomorrow I have something to say about the NFC playoffs.

And that's the change we need

Barack Obama has brought his A game. He is/was rockin’ the house. I’ll have the video as soon as it is available.

The speech was too long. Still the passion was there. The themes that we will hear over the next 5 months are here. Iraq is going to be big. Health care will be big. Economy. Energy will be big.

Here are Barack Obama’s prepared remarks.

Tonight, after fifty-four hard-fought contests, our primary season has finally come to an end.

Sixteen months have passed since we first stood together on the steps of the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Illinois. Thousands of miles have been traveled. Millions of voices have been heard. And because of what you said – because you decided that change must come to Washington; because you believed that this year must be different than all the rest; because you chose to listen not to your doubts or your fears but to your greatest hopes and highest aspirations, tonight we mark the end of one historic journey with the beginning of another – a journey that will bring a new and better day to America. Tonight, I can stand before you and say that I will be the Democratic nominee for President of the United States.

I want to thank every American who stood with us over the course of this campaign – through the good days and the bad; from the snows of Cedar Rapids to the sunshine of Sioux Falls. And tonight I also want to thank the men and woman who took this journey with me as fellow candidates for President.

At this defining moment for our nation, we should be proud that our party put forth one of the most talented, qualified field of individuals ever to run for this office. I have not just competed with them as rivals, I have learned from them as friends, as public servants, and as patriots who love America and are willing to work tirelessly to make this country better. They are leaders of this party, and leaders that America will turn to for years to come.

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