A Burgundy and Gold Obsession
Game 12 - Philly. No biggie. Just a season in the balance ...

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    College at Brockport

    Helmet Capital Obsession: Delving Into a Numbers Game

    Delving Into A Numbers Game Recently, I began reading The Hidden Game of Football by Bob Carroll, Pete Palmer and John Thorn. It’s an older book,...

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    Very interesting. Like you mentioned “what’s good?”. I understand their grading but without a context it’s hard to make and reasonable judgment from the data.

    If you are taking requests for comparison, how about LT from a few years back? You could use that as one of the best seasons for a RB in recent memory. How about Arian Foster and Michael Turner for contemporary guys?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hog Fever View Post
    Very interesting. Like you mentioned “what’s good?”. I understand their grading but without a context it’s hard to make and reasonable judgment from the data.

    If you are taking requests for comparison, how about LT from a few years back? You could use that as one of the best seasons for a RB in recent memory. How about Arian Foster and Michael Turner for contemporary guys?
    Are you volunteering your services to help figure this out?

    And by the way, the system they proposed is MUCH simpler. I changed it and added to it to make it more "accurate". I use quotes because the truth is that I don't know if it made it any more accurate, but I sure think it did
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    this is gonna take some time to digest.

    btw...you are amazing poster!
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    Michigan State

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    Interesting, I see a lot more fails than wins in Torain's runs, maybe that has something to do with why they got away from running so much?

    Quote Originally Posted by KDawg
    A touchdown is always worth 4 points.
    And here, I always thought touchdowns were worth 6 points.

    I also think it would be helpful to have something to compare these numbers to, but thanks for the effort nonetheless. It is greatly appreciated.
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    I wonder if this speaks as much to the line as to Torain. Play calling factors in as well. How many of those fails at the 3-4th plays were because of obvious play calling? If I have time next week, I will look at our line and see if they progressed at all as the year went on.
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    Not to bag on you, KDawg, but this is kind of useless without some sort of comparison or baseline. Very interesting numbers, but don't say much without something to compare them too! Need to analyze someone like Jim Brown or Walter Payton or something to get a baseline of what's "good." And no, I'm not volunteering. :P
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    Quote Originally Posted by Goaldeje View Post
    I wonder if this speaks as much to the line as to Torain. Play calling factors in as well. How many of those fails at the 3-4th plays were because of obvious play calling? If I have time next week, I will look at our line and see if they progressed at all as the year went on.
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    Of course it does. You're spot on.

    Football statistics are not like baseball statistics. Most of baseball's stats are based on individual performance, so it's easy to isolate. Sure, there are some stats that depend on others, but even then it's the effort of a few people. In football, all eleven players are accountable on every play. And even the players on your defense and special teams are responsible for your offense... And your offense and teams are responsible for your defense. So on and so forth. And then your coaches factor in. It's almost 100% impossible to isolate a single player on a football team.

    It would be interesting to look into the offensive line, though I'm not sure how we'd isolate them. Perhaps just look at them as an entire offense?

    This system, by the way, is not designed just for the running backs. It should be able to be used on all players.

    fansince,

    Thank you sir.

    China,

    I'd say that theory has some credence. But then if we broke down McNabb/Grossman's wins/fails I bet we'd see a ton of fails there as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lanky Livingston View Post
    Not to bag on you, KDawg, but this is kind of useless without some sort of comparison or baseline. Very interesting numbers, but don't say much without something to compare them too! Need to analyze someone like Jim Brown or Walter Payton or something to get a baseline of what's "good." And no, I'm not volunteering. :P
    Seems like you take issue with every one of my entries. That's fine. And I understand. I think I even said as much in the piece. What I didn't say was that I intend on breaking down a few other backs for comparison's sake in my next blog.

    I would have liked to have done it for this one, but breaking down Torain took enough time.
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    KDawg, you might want to check out Advanced NFL Stats website-their methodology of football statistical analysis is based on The Hidden Game of Football to which they've added probability analysis, game theory, multiple regression types, and, possibly most importantly, they've done a lot of the number crunching you may be looking to do yourself-it might both save you some "re-inventing the whel" and offer further insights for your own research. I'm looking forward to your further posts on this as I'm a statistical analysis geek (I used to do it for a living as a quality technician).

    They also have a huge database of play-by-play records of regular season games going back to the 2002 season-they have just finished compiling the 2010 regular season.

    Here's the link: http://www.advancednflstats.com/
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    I'm giving it a 2-4 year window. Looking for improvement in all areas. Redskins, you're on the clock.

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    Excellent web site. NFL.com's play by play works for me. I like some of the changes I made, but these are outstanding stats. Will be fun to stack these up to what I come up with for now... And in the end, these may even be what I use when I no longer feel like going through each stat.

    The system I'm using is something I'm going to extend to the team that I coach.

    Thanks for the link. Great stuff.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KDawg View Post
    Seems like you take issue with every one of my entries. That's fine. And I understand. I think I even said as much in the piece. What I didn't say was that I intend on breaking down a few other backs for comparison's sake in my next blog.

    I would have liked to have done it for this one, but breaking down Torain took enough time.
    No no, I think these numbers are very cool - but Torain's don't mean anything by themselves. Just the math nerd in me, I suppose.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KDawg View Post
    Are you volunteering your services to help figure this out?

    And by the way, the system they proposed is MUCH simpler. I changed it and added to it to make it more "accurate". I use quotes because the truth is that I don't know if it made it any more accurate, but I sure think it did
    YOU brought it up I'm merely taking your interesting idea to the next logical level.

    Besides, I pretend to have a life outside of football fandom.....stop laughing....If I have some time later this week I'll see if i can put together some numbers.
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    turnovers relative to time and score make a huge difference.....end of the game on the final drive down by 2.....bigger buzz killer than turnovers when ahead by 21.

    how is the system normalized across players who play against different quality defenses?
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    Quote Originally Posted by KDawg View Post
    China,

    I'd say that theory has some credence. But then if we broke down McNabb/Grossman's wins/fails I bet we'd see a ton of fails there as well.
    No doubt, but I don't think it requires much in-depth analysis to see the fails with McNabb and Grossman.
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    Hog,

    I'm planning on using Barry Sanders, LaDainian Tomlinson. Trung Canidate and Redskin's version Clinton Portis to see how their numbers stack up. Interesting group, and I may change that group by the time I do it. But I want a little bit of everything

    Quote Originally Posted by fansince62 View Post
    turnovers relative to time and score make a huge difference.....end of the game on the final drive down by 2.....bigger buzz killer than turnovers when ahead by 21.

    how is the system normalized across players who play against different quality defenses?
    Indeed those numbers would add to the system, but I'm not sure that those things happen enough to seriously jolt it.

    And it's not normalized. I take the liberty of assuming that the defenses played will average out a bit in order to make it more accurate.

    Quote Originally Posted by China View Post
    No doubt, but I don't think it requires much in-depth analysis to see the fails with McNabb and Grossman.
    Touche.
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    Sanders would be intriguing - he routinely had negative runs followed up by huge-gainers.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lanky Livingston View Post
    Sanders would be intriguing - he routinely had negative runs followed up by huge-gainers.
    Couldn't find any of his game logs, so I went with Chris Johnson from last year. Halfway through he has ALOT more fails than wins but his points are through the roof due to big plays. He had more points in one game than Torain had through the entire season.
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    If you wanted to get really nerdy, you could do some sort of statistical correlation between a RBs points & wins vs. team wins. You could find a sweet spot of sorts for the production of a RB.

    Actually, that would be more of a team running game thing, probably.
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    Yeah, but you could do it using this model, but it would probably be a bit more of a pain.

    I think I'm going to be making some tweaks to the formula, though.

    What's your guys opinion on this one:

    If a runner gains yards OVER the necessary yardage, I give them bonus points (.2 on 1st/2nd down and .5 on 3rd/4th down) for every extra yard gained. But for every yard UNDER what's needed, they only receive the fail negative point.

    I think, for example, I should change it to this:
    1st and 10, Gain of 3, Fail (-1 pt), 1 yard under (-.2) Total Loss: 1.2 points

    OR

    3rd and 3, Loss of 5, Fail (-1 pt), 8 yards under necessary yardage (-4.0) Total Loss: -5 points

    Currently it would work like this:
    1st and 10, Gain of 3, Fail (-1 pt) Total Loss: 1 points

    OR

    3rd and 3, Loss of 5, Fail (-1 pt), 2 yard loss or more (-2) Total Loss: -3 points

    Opinions? It's not that difficult a change to make, just recalculating points. I just don't know how beneficial it would be.
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