Where to for playoff tickets? Mike Holmgren out as Browns President

by Cleveland Frowns on October 16, 2012

“[W]hen it does happen, don’t come to me for extra tickets for a playoff game or something. You’re either with us or you’re not.”Mike Holmgren, 12/15/11

—————

OK.

Jimmy Haslam is in as Browns owner and uncontradicted reports are that Mike Holmgren will be out as Browns President by the end of the season, thus erasing one of the worst hires in Cleveland Browns and modern sports history. We’ve heard off-the-record reports that Holmgren has been AWOL in Berea since he first visited with Haslam there during training camp, which also explains why Browns spokesman Neil Gulkis “didn’t know why Holmgren decided not to come” to today’s NFL owners meeting approving the sale to Haslam despite having “originally planned to attend.”

So it looks like all there’s left to do is toast a mind-reeling legacy that includes:

For all that, he’ll walk away with at least $24 million, and probably all $40 million of his deal assuming it was fully guaranteed. Hopefully Haslam made Lerner pay for it with a discount in the purchase price for the franchise, and hopefully nothing like Lerner’s decision to solve a perceived problem by throwing money at the priciest brand name available will ever happen to the Cleveland Browns again.

Hard to blame Mike for taking the job (and Lerner’s money) in the first place, of course, but good riddance.

—————

UPDATE:

“Depending on where I am and the weather, I’m going to ride my motorcycle a lot. Perhaps go to the beach a little bit, go to Hawaii. … Like I said, I think Kathy and I are going to go someplace where it’s warm, with those little drinks with the umbrellas in it and then kind of think about what the future is all about.” – Mike Holmgren, 10/23/12

  • Believelander

    Pretty much everything you wrote here is dead on except this:

    Overreacting to the Griffin miss by reaching for a 29-year old failed baseball player who currently leads the league in interceptions and registers as the worst quarterback in the league by a mile according to the most advanced and comprehensive statistic ever devised to measure a quarterback’s value to his team (while Griffin ranks sixth, nearly a full 60 points above Weeden on a 100-point scale);

    Which is not dead on.

    • Bryan

      Here here! Great article except for the continued anti-Weeden propaganda. I have posted an old post below since its relevant. In short, QBR is not fully reliable and, since Week 1, Weeden has looked strong based on a lot of metrics other than QBR (rating, yards per attempt, yards per game, points per game by offense). Despite these facts, for some reason Frowns wants us to conclude authoritatively that Weeden is the worst QB in the league.

      “I like QBR, but it produces some funky results and is a complete black box (ESPN won’t tell us how they calculate it). If QBR is the only measure of performance you find worthy, then I can only assume that you agree Jake Locker is better than Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, and that Alex Smith and Matt Schaub are light years better than Cam Newton. I can also assume that you agree that Chad Pennington 2008 season was the 12th best single QB season since 2008. And that Jay Cutler’s 2008 season was the 19th best, and Vince Young’s the 21st best.

      The point is that, given the lack of a perfect statistic, it is usually best practice to assess performance based on an array of statistics. Hopefully those statistics all say the same thing. But when a particular QB’s performance looks substantially different using one statistic than it does using another statistic (e.g. Weeden’s QBR vs. Rating), it is misleading to focus only on the statistic that supports your argument.”

      I suppose none of this really matters – by Week 17 we will know what Weeden is. I am confident the answer will be “a very promising prospect,” but who knows.

      • ClevelandFrowns

        It is simply a true fact to say that Weeden leads the league in interceptions and has been the worst quarterback in the league by a mile as measured by the QBR formula. It is also a true fact to say that QBR is “the most advanced and comprehensive statistic ever devised to measure a quarterback’s value to his team.”

        Of course the jury is still out on Weeden, but on those two measures, it doesn’t look promising after six games. And looking at what Griffin is doing in Washington, it looks even worse.

        As for the rest you haven’t even started to explain why QBR isn’t reliable (just because you can’t understand it doesn’t mean that it’s not reliable). The formula is explained here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Total_quarterback_rating#Summary_of_computation , with further explanation here: http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/6833215/explaining-statistics-total-quarterback-rating , and here, as well as news that calculators for it will soon be available at ESPN.com as well: http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/6909058/nfl-total-qbr-faq#faq2

        The QB rating stat that you want to rely on is a primitive formula that merely adds up touchdowns and yards and subtracts for interceptions without accounting for the meaning of the plays to the game, or what the quarterback contributed to those plays vis a vis his teammates. Yards per attempt, yards per game, and points per game are all single statistics that are factored into QBR. All of them are wildly affected by external factors, including garbage time, teammates’ performance, etc. that QBR mathematically isolates. Additionally, none of the per play/per attempt stats mean a thing if a quarterback has a propensity to throw back-breaking interceptions.

        Against all this, you can’t manage to offer a single reason why the QBR formula wouldn’t give a much better measure of a quarterback’s performance than any of the other stats. Other than to suggest that Weeden (and Browns fans) are a victim of a vast conspiracy, which is insane. I know you don’t like what the statistic is telling you, but that doesn’t mean you get to ignore it.

        • oxr

          Aaron Schatz of Football Outsiders has some nice things to say about QBR here: http://www.reddit.com/r/nfl/comments/10klgg/iam_the_creator_of_footballoutsiderscom_aaron/

          He’s in business with ESPN so would hardly be likely to slag them off, of course, but what I take from that is that ESPN is too keen on being in business with Football Outsiders to be half-assing their own stats – they just want a proprietary cousin to DVOA/DYAR (which, for various reasons, I personally do still prefer).

        • Cranky M

          ” ‘It is also a true fact to say that QBR is “the most advanced and comprehensive statistic ever devised to measure a quarterback’s value to his team.’ ”

          Where i come from, a fact isn’t defined as “something that ESPN and nobody else on Earth says is true.”

          I ask once again: since you seem to have so much faith that QBR is the definitive way of appraising a QB, please explain to us how it works. Please explain what factors go into it, how they are weighted, the formula, etc etc.. It would be supremely foolish to put so much faith in an esoteric statistic that you don’t actually understand or have a definitive understanding of, so i’m going to assume that you know every facet of the QBR formula.

          It’s also nice to know that Jake Locker is a better QB than Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers. I never would have guessed it until QBR pointed it out to me. Thank goodness it’s infallible and completely accurate….

        • Bryan

          My argument for QBR being unreliable is that, in many cases, it produces rankings that any reasonable person would acknowledge are flawed. See my previous post. If you want to go to bat with QBR, then you have to be willing to argue Jack Locker is better this season than Brees and Rodgers. Or that Chad Pennington had one of the best QB seasons of the bast 5 years.

          In my mind, what this reveals is that there is no single, reliable measure for evaluating QB play given the complexities involved. You have to take account of all available information, and even then its a subjective assessment.

          As long as you agree “the jury is still out” on Weeden I am OK.

        • Believelander

          It’s not a true fact, it’s a hypothesis with no supporting evidence. Also, Weeden leads the league in interceptions but not in turnovers by a quarterback. Wild.

        • vespo09

          I personally prefer Football Outsiders’ DVOA, which accounts for strength of schedule (QBR does not), and isn’t affected by weighting the leverage of clutch situations (which QBR does) – which I feel is inherently subjective.

          The end result isn’t all that different: Weeden is ahead of only Gabbert and Cassel, barely behind Hasselbeck.

          http://www.footballoutsiders.com/stats/qb2012

    • ClevelandFrowns

      Blah blah blah blah … The truth is that nobody here or anywhere else on the internet has posted a persuasive explanation of why the QBR stat isn’t a useful one.

      Additionally, everything in the statement with which you take issue is a true fact, except with the potential of calling Weeden a “reach.” Still, I’m plenty comfortable with that opinion given that you won’t find a single mock draft that had Weeden going in the first round.

      Last warning: Lose the tinfoil hat or find someplace else to post your tripe. Thx.

      • humboldt

        The QBR is the embodiment of the American fixation on quantifying stuff. Unless you can develop an algorithm to measure something it has no real relative value. In a decade, it’ll be some other metric approximating quality at the QB position.

        As many have already attested to, the eye test tells you that Weeden is not the worst QB in the league. Full stop. As Einstein said, “not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted”.

        That aside, we can probably all agree that the process by which it became necessary for us to obtain Weeden was brutally flawed as Pete points out (i.e. signing Delhomme & Wallace, drafting and inflating McCoy’s potential, etc) and you can hang that disgrace square on Holmgren.

        • ClevelandFrowns

          If I’ve said it once I’ve said it a million times: Of all the problems with Americans, their propensity to use statistics to measure the performance of athletes is surely one of the worst.

          • humboldt

            Topped only by the Wall St “invention” of complex financial instruments that merely manipulate existing capital while creating nothing of material value…

          • oxr

            Oh for God’s sake.

          • Believelander

            No, this is actually completely true.

          • acto

            Frownie, Is that some of that new sarcasm stuff I have heard so much about?

      • http://twitter.com/cpmack Chris M

        “nobody here or anywhere else on the internet has posted a persuasive explanation of why the QBR stat isn’t a useful one. “

        The burden of proof should probably lie with a magical formula (most likely) extracted directly from a unicorn’s ass, rather than expecting people to discredit it with the absence of the actual formula.

        • ClevelandFrowns

          See above response to Bryan. The willingness of folks here to ignore a statistic for no other reason but that they don’t understand it or don’t like what it’s telling them is staggering and depressing.

          • http://twitter.com/cpmack Chris M

            “Total clutch weighted expected points” is a completely fabricated statistic, which is why Total QBR is a joke. It’s not that hard to understand.

          • nj0

            It’s not hard to understand in that sense, but not knowing the inputs to a thing like Total QBR negates any faith I might have in it.

          • Cranky M

            I would argue that a reliance on statistics as if they are objectively true when they most definitively are NOT, or a belief that everything can be quantified as a numerical value, is equally depressing. See my post above….

          • Believelander

            The willingness of folks to credit a statistic when they don’t understand it but do like what it’s telling them is far more staggering and depressing.

          • nj0

            People don’t understand or trust it because ESPN won’t tell us how it is derived.

      • Believelander

        I already covered why QBR is useless.

        Two identical completions of the same theoretical difficulty (the SUPER ADVANCED metric does not make the slightest attempt to factor in the quality of the defense) can be weighted dramatically differently when the ONLY difference is the quarter in which the pass is thrown. ESPN’s example, not mine, is that a pass at the opposing 10 yard line during the 4th quarter of a close game will have roughly a 2.0 ‘clutch index’ that doubles its benefit to the passer’s QBR, while the identical pass thrown in the second quarter of the same close game would have a ‘clutch index’ of roughly 1.0.

        I already understand the opposing argument – the former can win the team the game! – but it’s patently false because if that quarterback nails the pass in the second quarter or the fourth, it puts his team forward by 7 more points. The actual fact is that you haven’t posted a persuasive explanation of why the QBR stat is a useful one.

        However, since it’s the truth that nobody has posted a persuasive explanation of why the QBR stat isn’t a useful one here or anywhere else on the internet, none of these explanations actually exist:

        This one illustrates the 2 quarterbacks for the 0-16 Lions each had a higher QBR than 2008 Ben Roethlisberger of the 12-4 Super Bowl Champion Pukebags. Remember, QBR is all about how much the quarterback contributes to the team winning games, so Dan Orlovsky and Tyler Thigpen were better quarterbacks in 2008 than Ben Roethlisberger. The only flaw with this post objectively and easily illustrating the absurdity of QBR is that it begins with the phrase “Imagine you’re a life-long Steelers fan”, which of course I will not do.

        This gem examines a Tim Tebow 4/10, 79 yard performance (his only touchdown pass was on a well executed screen) that merited a higher QBR than an Aaron Rodgers 26/39, 396 yard, 2 TD, 0 INT dismantling on the same day. Note that both Tebow’s passing and rushing touchdown (6 rushes, 38 yards, TD) came in comeback fashion in the 4th quarter which absurdly inflated the rating of his actual performance.

        Here’s a good except from the Wikipedia article on Total QBR: “Unlike the NFL passer rating, ESPN has not yet been forthcoming on the exact specific formulas and procedures to calculate QBR.” Translation: only ESPN knows how QBR weighs anything, so the only thing supporting it is ESPN’s word that it’s super awesome. As I’ve said before, both this metric and traditional RAT (passer rating) are inferior methods of evaluation, but with the specific examples they have been forthcoming about, they have basically proven that their stat is worthless.

        Getting back to the issue of the weighting more heavily a touchdown in the fourth quarter: if the same touchdown occurred in the second quarter, giving the team the lead, this accomplishment by the quarterback contributes other intangible benefits to the team winning the game – taking the advantage before the end of the 4th quarter frequently forces the opponent to alter their game plan and become one dimensional, often hindering their ability to be effective instead of bolstering it. In spite of the definitive 10,000+ lines of wasted code in ESPN’s fake stat not being released to the public, they’ve released plenty to easily discredit it. I could write books about the topic and have steam left in the tank, but seriously, we’re already tl;dr. Can you give any points on why Total QBR is useful?

        Edit: I’d also benefit from some clarification on why my hat is made of tin foil. I’ve never stated that I think Brandon Weeden is a franchise quarterback. I’ve stated that it’s impossible to objectively conclude that Brandon Weeden is not a franchise quarterback. I also think they reached a bit on him, but spending the 22nd pick on a guy instead of the 37th pick isn’t going to submarine the franchise.

        • BIKI024

          Frownielogic: WR’s get 48-64 games to develop, QBs get 6 games or less.

        • Bryan

          Totally agree. And would like to add that I have identified other bizarre results that QBR generates in my post above as well as in yesterday’s post.

          QBR loves 2008 Chad Pennington, 2008 Jay Cutler and 2009 Vince Young. That seems to be a bit of problem for a metric designed to identify QB talent.

          #SmokeThatWeedenUntilYourEyesAreBleedin’

        • ClevelandFrowns

          The above posts on what QBR is and attempts to do establish why it is a preferable stat if employed correctly. You give no reason to believe that it’s not.

          Tebow made plays, both running and passing, to help his team win games and was rewarded for it by QBR. Rodgers’ plays weren’t as determinative to the win as Tebow’s were in the example you cite. The fact that QBR measures the impact of a QB’s rushing ability doesn’t make it a worse stat, it makes it a better stat. One thing I think the Tebow v. Rodgers example shows is that QBR is like ERA in baseball in that a low ERA is more impressive for a starter than it is for a relief pitcher, and a high QBR is more impressive for a QB who has more passing/rushing attempts than a QB who has fewer. This does nothing, however, to absolve Weeden.

          For the same reason, it’s not hard to believe that a couple of journeymen Lions QBs contributed marginally more to their team’s success than a rookie Ben did given what the Steelers defense meant to that team.

          I’m not saying that Weeden won’t be a franchise quarterback. I’m just saying that QBR says he’s been the worst in the league by a mile so far, and that there’s no good reason to ignore that stat.

          • Beeej

            “The above posts on what QBR is and attempts to do establish why it is a preferable stat if employed correctly. You give no reason to believe that it’s not.”

            Have you been passing the bath salts back and forth with MKC or are you just trying to sharpen up your lawyering skills for some upcoming mining litigation?

            Can anyone tell me what Colt McCoy’s QBR would be considering he got most of his stats in “garbage time?”

          • oxr

            The Tebow example is interesting and highlights one aspect of QBR that I am not a fan of, namely its praise of “clutch” play. Tebow was rewarded not merely for making good plays in the fourth quarter and overtime, but for doing so after having absolutely eaten it raw for the first forty-five, or fifty, or fifty-five minutes of the game. I don’t think that’s a good criterion to have in the stat, and I think they get away with it because seasons like Tebow’s 2011 are sufficiently unlikely as to be virtually unprecedented.

            Needless to say, this does not mean QBR is “useless”.

          • Cranky M

            I can think of plenty of good reasons to ignore that stat. In addition to my above explanation that statistics are not objectively true and are more of a reflection of humanity’s psychological make-up than they are an accurate reflection of reality, here’s another one:

            Despite the fact that QBR claims to take situation into context, it doesn’t actually seem to do so at all. It treats individual plays as if they are in a vacuum. To state that a pass in the 4th quarter is more valuable than an analogous pass in the 1st quarter is patently absurd.

            In fact, one could easily argue that the pass in the 1st quarter is MUCH more valuable, as it directly influences what happens over the course of the next 3 quarters, including that 4th quarter pass. How is a pass that directly dictates what happens over the next 3+ quarters of football not as valuable as one at the end of the game? That makes zero sense. Don’t say “because it determines who wins the game.” because that simply isn’t true. That 1st quarter play is a direct factor in the situation at the end of the 4th, so it has just as much bearing on the final outcome.

            Here’s another: trying to objectify “clutch” and place numerical values on the value of a play based upon some imagined perception of how “clutch” it was, is so absurdly illogical and ludicrous that i’m not even sure where to begin criticizing it.

          • Believelander

            There are many good reasons to ignore QBR.

            So when I requested that you provide evidence for why we should NOT ignore QBR, you argue for QBR’s validity by stating that Tebow contributed more to his team winning (in a loss when over 25% of his total offensive yards and 50% of his touchdowns were the result of a screen pass) than Aaron Rodgers did (in a win where he produced over 80% of the team’s total offensive yardage and his running game averaged 2.5 yards per carry) because QBR said he did.

            QBR is valid because Tebow contributed more to his team winning than Rodgers did because QBR says so. Circuitous logic.

            Anyway, I’m going to continue to agree with the rest of the free world outside the least credible sports agency on the planet (that is ESPN, not Cleveland Frowns). Unless you can provide some persuasion that QBR has merit other than by saying it’s right because it says it’s right or that ESPN says it’s right?

          • oxr

            I thought this was interesting, and addresses your objections. Specifically, it’s very much worth noting that QBR is a rate stat: http://espn.go.com/blog/statsinfo/post/_/id/28374/tebows-diverse-skills-boost-total-qbr

            I hadn’t given it much thought until right now, but I think we’re both misunderstanding the “clutch” aspect – they’re talking about situations when the game is close, rather than the fourth quarter specifically. I still think this is suboptimal, but it is an attempt to deal with a genuine problem that needs to be addressed one way or the other, namely that of discounting garbage time production. As I said, I prefer the Football Outsiders stuff.

          • Believelander

            Oxr: no, in their own example of the “clutch” aspect, they state that a pass made at the opposing 10 in the 2nd quarter of a close game receives a “clutch” index of roughly 1.0. An identical pass made at the opposing 10 in the 4th quarter of a close game receives a clutch index of roughly 2.0. This fact alone destroys any objective measurement of the quarterback being a quarterback.

            Also the above ESPN article states that it gives “significant credit” to plays a QB makes when scrambling or with their feet, while not detailing how much. There are so many problems with using QBR I could go on for years, but I won’t, and it’s good that you prefer the Football Outsiders stuff.

      • Cranky M

        You haven’t posted a persuasive explanation of why QBR IS a useful stat, either. I ask in all sincerity, why do you think QBR is so accurate? Other than the fact that the people who made it up say that it is, of course….

        Statistics are not infallible, especially esoteric statistical formulas that nobody even understands. Not everything is easily quantifiable by a single statistic, and i would playing quarterback is one of those things. Putting so much faith in such an esoteric statistic seems foolhardy, at best.

        Statistics are, in fact, very misleading. Way more stuff than we would care to admit is governed by chance, and our own psychological structure causes us to mistakenly project causal relationships and correlations onto cases where none exist.
        I strongly suggest picking up a book called The Drunkard’s Walk: How Randomness Rules Our Lives. It contains chapters pertaining specifically to sports statistics, and the fact that they are not actually accurate representations of performance.
        The moral is: statistics are NOT an objective truth.

        And, once again: Weeden isn’t playing QB in a vacuum. How about taking into consideration such things such as receivers, offensive line, playcalling, etc etc etc??? Does it not seem a bit silly to judge Weeden in the exact same manner as every other QB in the league as if they are all in the exact same situation? So, Weeden with his raw/subpar receivers and terrible playcalling should be judged in the exact same manner as a QB on a good veteran team with good wide receivers and coaching? That seems completely absurd, in my book.

        • BIKI024

          the playcalling has nothing to do with some of the bonehead throws Weeds has made. i think that’s the main thing Frownie is hanging his hat on is the poor decisions he seems inclined to make, hence the dawgshit QBR.

          but Frownie is a reasonable person, I’m sure if Weeds can improve his efficiency (and QBR) these next 3 games, the conversation could change.

          • Cranky M

            I’m not blaming the receivers or playcalling for every bad throw or decision he has made. I’m just saying that these things have to be taken into consideration.

            Every QB operates in an entirely different set of circumstances, so to judge them by one numerical metric as if they are all playing under the exact same conditions seems patently absurd to me.

            To say nothing of a system that attempts to place a numerical value on a completely arbitrary and imaginary concept such as “clutch.”

      • Jim

        “It’s also nice to know that Jake Locker is a better QB than Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers.I never would have guessed it until QBR pointed it out to me. Thank ” Cut and pasted from above, and haven’t verified this, but if that is true I would consider that prima facie evidence that the QBR stat isn’t all its cracked up to be.

        • Believelander

          More primerib face evidence that it’s not all it’s cracked up to be: nobody besides ESPN, where the E stands for Entertainment and not Facts, cracks it up to be anything. Because it isn’t. Everything ESPN does is geared towards one thing: making money for ESPN. The point of QBR is not to better analyze QBs, it’s to make ESPN money. Don Smith worked for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Don Smith’s job pertained to evaluating and recognizing the best players in the history of the NFL. I wonder whose stat for evaluating a player I like more.

        • Cranky M

          I think the post where i actually said that about Locker and Brees/Rodgers was deleted, unfortunately.

      • Bandit

        Let me just say that we can debate the QBR stat, but I do not believe that it includes a metric for coaching. Thus who has the dumbest coach in the NFL as a devisor in the formula would likely jetison Weeden to the top of the pack.

    • Deputy Glitters

      Totally agree. Why is Total QBR “the most advanced and comprehensive statistic ever devised to measure a quarterback’s value to his team” ? Because ESPN SAID SO!!! Must be true right?! Somehow, we’re supposed to simply take that leap of faith and assume that a bunch of statheads can correctly weight important plays as they pertain to winning a football game?

      From Michael David Smith of Profootballtalk.com on the major drawback of QBR:[8]

      “ One of the aspects of Total QBR that could be both a strength and a drawback is that it considers data that the average fan doesn’t have access to, like how far a pass travels in the air, and whether the quarterback was under pressure when he threw it … it means fans can’t see for themselves exactly where Total QBR comes from — fans just have to trust that the distance the ball traveled was correctly measured, and how much pressure the quarterback felt on the play was correctly assessed … If ESPN is committed to this stat and is able to clearly and concisely explain it on the Worldwide Leader’s NFL broadcasts, then fans will quickly become familiar with it and it will soon become a staple of how we talk about quarterbacks. On the other hand, if the stat comes across as too convoluted — or if it doesn’t really seem like much of an improvement on the current passer rating — then this will all feel like a rather pointless exercise.”

      Speaking to the pressured throw metric: A QB then essentially is penalized for getting the ball out quickly, or by having stellar protection? Or rewarded by holding onto the ball to long and throwing under pressure by choice?

      How are QB runs factored in and how much are they worth?

      How much of any of it is worth what?

      The point is, Frownie is arguing in staunch defense of a bunch of numbers that as far as we know, mean absolutely nothing, because they can’t be explained.

      • http://twitter.com/cpmack Chris M

        So one more thing about this – since ball travel in the air is a measurable statistic used in this rating, then Weeden would clearly be penalized for being part of the West Coast offense, correct?

        • Believelander

          No, but he’d be penalized for being part of SHURMURBALL

      • ClevelandFrowns

        ??? So what you’re calling the “major drawback” is something that Smith admits could be a strength?

        All he’s talking about here is the fact that the average fan might not be able to fully understand the stat. That doesn’t mean at all that the stat’s not useful. Though I don’t think it’s that hard to count how many yards a ball travels through the air. You just go, one, two, three, etc., until you get to the point on the field where the ball was caught. If you want to set up a skype conference I can walk through the basic concept with you.

        As for what any given QB’s run is worth, it depends on what it adds to expected points: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Total_quarterback_rating#Summary_of_computation

        As for measuring pressure, it’s not that hard to count the number of seconds before a pocket collapses.

        See above response to Bryan on the rest. Just because a stat is complex doesn’t mean it’s not useful and actually could tend to mean the opposite.

        • Deputy Glitters

          Ok big guy. So now explain to me how one objectively quantifies expected points?

          And the point about the pressure question is that you don’t really know how they measure pressure.

          The overall point being you’re putting your blind faith into some convoluted statistic, while you have no idea at how the numbers are arrived. Very anti-ClevelandFrowns of you.

          • Believelander

            You quantify expected points for a 3rd and 7 at your own 20 by averaging points produced on 3rd and 7 at your own 20 for every 3rd and 7 at your own 20 in the history of forever. Or some iteration of this math. It’s all highly arbitrary and highly flawed. The reason sabermetrics kills it in baseball and basketball and fizzles in football is simple: in baseball and basketball, the game is so much more about individual accomplishment that you can look at every 1-2 count versus every pitcher in history, average some results to come up with what you expect a player should be able to achieve, give the player a positive or negative handicap based on how good the guy who throws the pitch is, then pop out some result number that goes into the situational aggregate for what he did.

            In football, you have to try to account for what 22 people are doing at the same time. Baseball is an endless, timeless procession of duels between hitter and pitcher, skewed to a relatively small degree by the fielders. How can you quantify what all 5 offensive linemen and all the pass rushers are doing on every play? How do you quantify the receiver getting chucked at the line of scrimmage throwing off the deep timing route? How do you account for Peyton Manning throwing a pick 6 last night when his receiver ran the wrong route, and ran a go instead of a comeback? Was it Manning’s fault the receiver didn’t run the route he was supposed to run? It can’t be his fault that he didn’t react to the receiver running the wrong route – his job is to throw the football to that receiver before the receiver turns around to catch it. There’s so many levels of complexity, subtlety, and nuance that no stat could ever lay claim to being able to consistently, accurately gauge a quarterback’s performance. Ergo, what we have to rely on is our eyes and our brains, which show that Brandon Weeden is a rookie playing often poorly but sometimes well, with a good deal of talent and promise but as easily a chance to truly be another Derek Anderson.

            Right now I’m comfortable with that. Derek Anderson posted a single helluva season where the Browns didn’t go to the playoffs because of a gaffe by a referee.

        • nj0

          I don’t think the issue is with the complexity. My issue is with the inputs (or rather, the inputs to the inputs) and the predicative ability of the stat.

          As mentioned in the link I posted, in 2008 QBR ranked Big Ben (SB winning year) behind Dan Orlovsky (0-10 with the Lions).

    • CleveLandThatILove

      I think Jimmy gets it.

      • acto

        That is the most important point today CLTIL.
        I hope that you are correct.

        • CleveLandThatILove

          Me too. Nobody deserves it more than Cleveland.

      • Believelander

        I do not yet think Jimmy gets it, but I hope he does and he has certainly done nothing to dissuade us.

      • bupalos

        Orange Hat Guys!!

  • GrandRapidsRustlers

    This is the best day for this franchise since I walked out of the stadium on January 1, 1995.

    Granted that’s like a limbo bar hanging between Progressive Field and the Q but here we are.

  • Dr. Jew

    If you give Weeden three or four years to develop, he’ll be eligible for Social Security. No one can reasonably expect him to become a franchise QB, even if he maximizes his talent. Given this premise, the Browns can’t justify taking him in the first round when they had so many holes to fill. I also suspect that Weeden still would have been available in the late second or early third round, given his age. It was an indefensible pick by a management team that has indefensibly taken a weak franchise and made it weaker.

    • BIKI024

      3-4 years? it seems reasonable to me to see where Weeds is in his development after 16 games.. then it’s up to whomever they bring in to run football side of ops. Weeden was low risk high reward. if he bombs, we’re most likely setup to have another high pick to get a franchise QB. i’m hoping he turns out to be as good as a lot of people in Weeds’ corner feel and we can leverage the high selections on filling up some of the other holes (LB, DE, DB, and WR)

      • nj0

        Fact remains, if he is a bust, they still wasted a 1st rounder.

        I have some hope that we might get some quality play out of him down the road.

        • BIKI024

          down the road? would you agree that he did well against the Bengals? the Colts, recently depleted Ravens D, and dumpsterfire Chargers defense are no better, so hopefully he doesn’t try to force things and keeps the turnovers down. shoulda coulda woulda, but a couple less mistakes by Weeds and we could have another win or 2.

          • nj0

            Saying “I have hope we get X down the road” in no way suggests that no X was received previously.

            You’ve become quite reactionary towards anything anyone says that can remotely be perceived as critical.

            Go pick an argument with someone else please.

          • BIKI024

            buddy, seems to me that you’re the one that is overreactionary. we are in agreement that Weeden has potential right? all i said was that he has a chance to yield dividends in the next 3 weeks, not just “down the road”. he has proven to play well against an underperforming defense in Cinci, which it seems we will be facing these next few weeks before the BYE

          • nj0

            So the next 3 weeks aren’t down the road?

          • BIKI024

            i guess technically it is, but i haven’t really heard “down the road” referenced when talking about the next game. or even the next 3 games. but hey, can’t we all just get along? King Haslam has entered his court!

          • nj0

            That’s why I am so surprised – I am actually saying that I think Weeden can be good! We’re in agreement.

            Also, if you check Peter King’s mail bag today you’ll see that somebody else took issue with him praising Chan Gailey.

          • BIKI024

            re: Chan. i didn’t watch every play like it seems you have, but even if he made some bad in-game decisions, that’s only part of the process of winning the game. Sunday is the result of a full week’s worth of preparation, scheming, and coaching. he EASILY could’ve lost control of the team after getting their ass handed to them for 2 straight weeks with the opposing teams on a 90-17 run. now that’s a dumpster fire. he was able to keep them focused and go across 3 time zones and get a big win on the road. another big loss and he probably lost his job, but at the very least probably lost the team. and again, i’m a bit biased because Uncle Chan helped me win big on BUF +5.

        • Wiseoldredbeard

          “Fact remains, if he is a bust, they still wasted a 1st rounder.”

          Illuminating. This is the case with every first round pick. I would wager that after 3-4 years the majority of first round picks are considered busts. So, if he turns out not to be a bust, GREAT. If not, too bad. Can’t we wait until we have a year of data to make this decision instead of piling on?

          • nj0

            Fair enough. I deserve that. It was definitely ESPN caliber analysis.

            What I was thinking was it’s a worst bust to miss on a reach when we clearly had bigger holes to fill and when there were better players at those positions still on the board.

            As much as I don’t care for Colt, I would have rather seen us go with him and build up the team else where than get Weeden. That’s not a criticism of Weeden since I don’t follow CFB and don’t feel qualified to judge incoming QBs.

          • TWMBrad

            Bust or not, I’m sure glad we have Weeden instead of Brady Quinn (and Chips McCoy). I suppose that is some sign of non-bustiness.

            On a contrite note, I was banging on Gordon two weeks ago as one of the worst picks in the history of everything; yet today that is looking like a not so bad use of a 2nd rounder. Hence, as has been pointed out by many, it is fools gold to call any rookie a “bust” (or conversely “a star) based on just a few games of evidence.

          • Believelander

            There is never a bigger hole to fill than quarterback anymore. Ever.

            @TWMBrad: I gentlemanly apologize for bellicosely tearing into you for ragging on the Weeden/Gordon picks. I submit that while Gordon and Weeden could easily bust and have a long way to go, we can both raise a glass to the fact that they clearly have the deep threat burst and deep threat throwing ability to make defenses pay in the severest manner for disrespecting them by bringing both safeties down out of their deep zones.

        • Beeej

          God forbid the Browns waste a 1st rounder. Here is a reminder:
          1999 1 Tim Couch * QB Kentucky
          2000 1 Courtney Brown * DE Penn State
          2001 3 Gerard Warren DT Florida
          2002 16 William Green RB Boston College [23]
          2003 21 Jeff Faine C Notre Dame
          2004 6 Kellen Winslow II TE Miami (Florida) [24]
          2005 3 Braylon Edwards WR Michigan
          2006 13 Kamerion Wimbley LB Florida State [25]
          2007 3 Joe Thomas OT Wisconsin [26]
          22 Brady Quinn QB Notre Dame [27]
          2008 — No Pick — — [27]
          2009 21 Alex Mack C California [28]
          2010 7 Joe Haden CB Florida
          2011 21 Phil Taylor DT Baylor
          2012 3 Trent Richardson RB Alabama
          22 Brandon Weeden QB Oklahoma State

          • nj0

            And what has that gotten us?

          • Beeej

            I wasn’t thrilled with the Weeden pick. I think it is waaaaaaaay to early to label him a bust. Peyton Manning had 26 tds 28 ints and a 72 qb rating his rookie year. Eli had a 55.4 rating, and it took him 5 years to get it over 80. Granted Weeden doesn’t have the luxury of 5 years to get good, but he also doesn’t have 5 extra years of taking hits b/c of his time in baseball. I don’t think Weeden is the second coming of football Jesus, but he is the best QB we’ve had since…crap…I don’t know…Testaverde? Maybe. Us drafting a first round QB every year is akin to the shitty Lions teams taking a receiver with their first pick 6 years in a row. Is there a QB in college this year anywhere close to RGIII or Luck? If the answer is “no,” then lets look at our other glaring holes. We have one or two.

          • nj0

            I’m not calling him a bust. I’m just saying that a wasted 1st rounder is a wasted 1st rounder and no GM/Prez should get a pass on that imo.

    • Believelander

      I think it’s likely we could have acquired Weeden with our second round pick, and I would have liked to see us get David DeCastro or a top shelf wide receiver talent instead. That said, Mitchell Schwartz is looking better and better really fast and David DeCastro may not play by the start of next season. I think Heckert played it very safe on acquiring Brandon Weeden, though, and I believe he could have done better.

      That said, it’s a bit off to say you can’t expect (and by that I assume you mean believe?) he can become a franchise quarterback. Why can’t he become a franchise quarterback? You say it as if it’s basically certain he will not, which is false; it’s no more certain he won’t than he will. Perhaps at the end of next year, we’ll know what we have, but not now, which is why assertions like this are simultaneously frustrating and amusing.

      • NeedsFoodBadly

        What I would like to know is what influence Holmgren has had on draft day decisions. We’ve all heard rumors, but he seems to push for certain QBs over others. Would love to know if Weeden is Holmgren’s guy or Heckert’s guy, and who felt what about RGIII.

      • Dr. Jew

        Weeden has had generally good pass protection so far this year. The receivers have dropped far too many balls, but they’ve been open more than they were for McCoy last year. Despite these advantages, the results have been mixed, at best. Weeden has made critical, game -changing blunders in every game this season, except the two against Cincinnati. He did not play particularly well on Sunday — remeber thee seven consecutive three-and-outs? I’ve detected no particular ability to improvise, and he’s been horrible in the two-minute drill (although play-calling has largely contributed to this problem).

        No one knows for certain how good Weeden will ultimately be, but there’s no objective evidence to suggest that he’ll be any better than ordinary. And I still believe that the Browns will end up drafting a QB with the high first round pick they’re likely to have next spring.

        • Believelander

          Weeden has had decent pass protection this year, but the alarming number of batted balls have been primarily a product of our offensive line surrendering a lot of space and control of the blocker. I’ve re-watched every Browns game to date, and on almost every batted pass our lineman is not forcing the lineman to stay engaged and has given up a large amount of ground. Brandon Weeden is throwing into his throwing lanes, and it’s not his job to see where the defensive linemen stand and their readiness to swat his pass. It’s his job to look at the places where there are no linemen and past them down the field. I’ve actually been pretty infuriated with the line here.

          The net result: the line has been helping him more than it’s been hurting him (although their propensity for getting off their spots has also showed in our only occasionally good, and almost constantly shitty, run blocking).

          Weeden has made critical game changing blunders in every game this season, except the ones he didn’t. Just like Andrew Luck and Ryan Tannehill who were drafted much higher. Yes, they have more years to learn, but their franchise also sunk more assets into acquiring them – Brandon Weeden wasn’t a top 10 pick only because of his age. RG3 really hasn’t had the blunders, but that’s because RG3 is a freak, and I agree completely with Frownie that not acquiring him was a huge f*** up on our part. Actually, I feel that not getting RG3 was a mistake that exceeds all the other mistakes of the Holmgren regime combined.

          He did not play particularly well on Sunday, but he doesn’t improvise because he’s not allowed to improvise – Weeden’s duties do not include audibles or hot routes, they involve running the play Pat Shurmur calls. Or at least they do for 10 more games.

          Andrew Luck has shown no more objective evidence he will be any better than ordinary than Brandon Weeden. Maybe a little bit? Not for the amount of assets they sunk into that guy. And if the Browns draft a QB high in this upcoming draft, I will throw myself off a balcony.

          • NeedsFoodBadly

            “He did not play particularly well on Sunday, but he doesn’t improvise because he’s not allowed to improvise – Weeden’s duties do not include audibles or hot routes, they involve running the play Pat Shurmur calls. Or at least they do for 10 more games.”

            This is a particularly salient and important point that I hope people remember when evaluating Weeden’s play to this point. Shurmurball doesn’t tailor itself to its personnel, nor does it allow improvisation.

          • Believelander

            If I wasn’t so busy being a smug shithead last year for predicting the Browns not to top 4-12, I would have had more fury at the fact that Shurmur basically stripped Colt McCoy of every tool that would let Colt McCoy win games.

  • nj0

    I officially turned on Holmgren on November 3rd, 2010. That was a week after the NO win and a week before the NE victory, arguably the top back-to-back victories in Browns v.2.o history. And here I have to read Big Mike talking about how he still might return to coaching.

    That’s when I knew Mangini was done and Holmgren was an egotistical fool more concerned with his own person than the Browns franchise.

    Holmgren’s name, you may depend upon it, stands absurdly too high and will go down.

    Good riddance.

    • NeedsFoodBadly

      What Haslam didn’t tell you is that Holmgren is retiring as president at the end of the season and taking over as head coach. Hooray!

    • Wiseoldredbeard

      Agree. During his time in Cleveland, the guy had a propensity for doing or saying the wrong thing at the wrong time that was profound. Oh, big wins, time to say I might come back to coaching. People in Cleveland saying I’m not visible, I’ll do an interview in Seattle. Finally do an interview in Cleveland and get asked about preformance, rant about playoff tickets. I can’t say that his intentions were bad, cause he’s been in too many places and appears to be too highly regarded for that to be the case. I just think he was about the worst guy for the job that Lerner could have found. Can you imagine him in some huge boxy suit at an NFL owner meeting in NYC, while all the owners are talking about competitive jet fuel prices? He’s a coach, not an exec. After a year, I think he basically stopped caring. It’s like a 16 year old at 7-11 for a summer job. Do you really care there is a dirty bathroom? Probably not, but you can be damned sure you’re not going to clean it.

      • nj0

        Exactly. Since Lerner was AWOL, I assumed Holmgren would step in and be the face of the franchise, the guy where the buck stopped, etc. And maybe he was, but he sure as shiat wasn’t good at it.

        I’d add the McCoy concussion to your list too.

        Just poorly handled situation after poorly handled situation.

  • Wiseoldredbeard

    Haslam realizing that firing Holmgren was the first thing that needed to happen gives me confidence for the future. I don’t know enough about Banner to have an opinion, but this decision clearly indicates that there will be accountability in the organization, and is a clear break from a time where the final decision maker has no financial interest in the team succeeding. That, and there is no longer evidence of a blatent conflict of interest (LaMonte).

    Pretty sure I don’t agree with an argument that Weeden is one of the glaring mistakes of the Holmgren era. We don’t know enough yet – plain and simple. Maybe he’s old, or will fizzle, but he is unquestionably an upgrade over what we’ve had the last several years.

    Maybe we can patch together two in a row. Then, if two, why not three. The Chargers proved last night they are total garbage. At home. With a 24 point lead. Considering our INT rate this season, we may get 18 of them from Rivers. Hell, at that point it isn’t impossible that we beat the Ravens at home. If we go into the bye at 4-5, that would be pretty freaking great.

  • nj0

    Reports from Berea are also saying that Heckert is assuming that he’ll be done once the new President gets in place.

    While I’ve been bearish on Heckert, I think he has done the best job of the three and may be (depending on how the talent finishes out the year) worth keeping in place.

    Which brings up a pet peeve – I hate how all NFL coaches/front office types need to have “their people” in place. If Heckert can find talent for Holmgren than he can find it for Banner. I hated how MH did it Mangini and I’ll hate it if Banner does it Heckert (again, assuming apparent “talent” on the field).

    • BIKI024

      actually Heckert’s previous job was to find talent for Banner, for 9 years no less..

      • nj0

        I thought Banner was coming from Pittsburgh. Shows what I know. So then I wonder why (as reported) Heckert thinks he’s done?

        • BIKI024

          well from what i’ve read online, it seems that the personnel side (Reid/Heckert, etc) butted heads a lot with Banner with regards to who to sign/extend over the years. but that seems like the status quo in any type of business, there will always be issues with the guy writing the checks and the guys who wants him to write the checks.

          it will be interesting to see how the Eagles fare, because apparently Howie Roseman, the current GM of the Eagles and fellow man of the tribe is Banner’s protege, so if Heckert is out, it seems logical to think Banner will bring in Roseman.

          • vespo09

            I just hope this doesn’t end with Andy Reid as the coach of the Browns.

          • BIKI024

            yeah it seems like maybe would want to change it up a bit, was with Reid all those years and thing apparently ended sourly.

            FYI: guess who Roseman’s agent is?? wait for it.. LaMonte!

          • TWMBrad

            Roseman might be tough to sell to the fans if he gets canned by PHI. Fair of not, the stink of underachievment would be high after Lurie gave him a blank check (albeit with salary cap strings attached) to build the “Dream Team” and they gave Asante Samual away for nothing. Plus, Roseman sure seems like Heckart 2.0 (or Phil Savage 2.1) – scouts who defer to larger personalities (Reid, Ozzie) for the tough personnel decisions.

          • BIKI024

            yeah but apparently Roseman and Banner are super close (not to mention they have the same Rabbi).

          • NeedsFoodBadly

            You know that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is a fake, right?

    • Cranky M

      I will be very, very sad if Heckert gets the boot. Not saying his run here has been perfect, but it’s hard to deny that he has substantially increased the team’s talent base and created a foundation with lots of potential.

  • BIKI024

    Frownie when are you getting your Browns media credentials? I know you have “insiders” in Berea, but would be interesting to see if Holmgren truly does stick around for next 3-4 months and works with Banner in this transition (per Haslam’s presser)

    • nj0

      “And here’s the daiquiri machine.

      And right here in this little drawer is where we put the keys to the golf carts.

      If you want to dial out be sure to hit 9….”

      • Beeej

        LQTM

  • ClevelandFrowns
    • Believelander

      Wait, Holmgren’s a Gemini too?

      Fuck.

  • Jim

    RE: 29-year-old rookie quarterback, ESPN the Magazine had a series of articles last week on the “optimal” age for professional sports players at certain positions. The optimal age for an NFL quarterback? 28.4. According to the metrics ESPN used, our rookie quarterback is already beyond the optimal age.

    • vespo09

      If you figure the vast majority of QBs get drafted into the league at ages 21-22, what that’s really saying that the average amount of time from draft to peak performance is 6-7 years – which makes sense.

      Weeden’s age is not inherently a reason to think he’s going to be bad. Lack of accuracy, staring down WRs, immobile in the pocket, etc…even too much time away from football during his minor league career might mean he won’t work out. But being 29 doesn’t mean a thing in and of itself.

      • Believelander

        He’d better not peak in 6-7 years.

        • vespo09

          Why? Because he’ll be in his mid 30s? Brady and Peyton are in their mid 30s and seem do be doing just fine.
          No, I’m not saying Weeden is as good as them, I’m saying there’s no reason qbs can’t play at that age, especially if they haven’t taken the beating Weeden wasn’t subjected to while he was playing baseball.
          My point with all of this is just that his age is irrelevant when you’re trying to evaluate him as a quarterback.

          • Believelander

            This is actually true. I did a little research on the ‘physical decline’ players supposedly experience in their 30s, and determined that with proper diet and exercise to maintain proper testosterone levels and of course general physical health, combined with avoiding cumulative physical damage (ironically both have suffered but recovered from these), athletes who really go the extra mile to stay in peak physical condition can see little to no physical deterioration.

          • Steve

            But Brady and Manning are HoF talents, who were much, much better at 29 than Weeden is now. That they (and Brees) are still in the league is because they are so good that they were so good in their peak that they could take a decline and still be good QBs. Your average mediocre QB cannot afford that decline.

  • nj0
  • BIKI024

    Will be interesting to see who performs better this week with regards to Luck vs. Weeds.

    their numbers ytd are not that far off from each other, but I think you’d have to clearly give Luck the advantage when it comes to his receiving corps.

    Completion Percentage: Weeds leads 55.8 to 53.4
    Yards per attempt: Luck leads 6.73 to 6.58
    TDs: Tied at 7
    INT: Weeds 10 to Lucks 7
    Quarterback Rating: Luck 72; Weeds 68.1
    QBR: Luck 73.6 Weeds: 15.1

    seems like the most important stats people look at are similar, yet the QBR is way off. what is QBR again???

    and while Weeds has 10 picks, he has them in 231 attempts, which is 4%.

    who else has a 4% or higher INT rate?

    Romo: 4.8%
    Rivers: 4.3%

    • Believelander

      Worth noting because QBR is so COMPREHENSIVE and ADVANCED: Andrew Luck has lost 2 fumbles. Brandon Weeden has lost 0 fumbles. Luck’s QBR is so high because of stats he racked up against teams playing prevent defense, which QBR weights VASTLY more heavily (and by the way, makes no attempt to account for opposing defense because it’s too COMPREHENSIVE and ADVANCED for that).

      Or to more succinctly answer your question “what is QBR again?”: nobody actually knows.

    • nj0

      If you’re familiar, it’s like baseball’s Win Probability Added (WPA) on steroids.

      http://www.coldhardfootballfacts.com/content/qbr-espns-deeply-flawed-made-for-tv-stat/7978/

    • Cranky M

      Oh man, that is truly priceless. Love how every number is so similar, and the Total QBR is miles and miles apart.
      Surely that’s an indictment of every other statistic cited, however, and not an indictment of Total QBR. Why blame one statistic when you can blame a multitude?

  • DarkwingDork

    Maybe Mike Holgrem can ask Obama for a stimulus package.

    • NeedsFoodBadly

      HAR

    • Believelander

      giggidy?

      HAHAHA get THAT thought out of your brainretinas.

  • Cranky M

    Placing a numerical value on an imagined perception of something as arbitrary as how “clutch” a certain play is couldn’t possibly be more ludicrous or illogical.
    Seeing as how that’s apparently a defining characteristic of QBR, i truly fail to see why that statistic should be taken seriously. Anybody who puts all of their faith in that (or ANY) statistic needs to come to a better understanding of just how arbitrary and meaningless most statistics truly are.

    • nj0

      Well, not that I understand exactly how QBR works (who does?), but you can attach a non-arbitrary value to “clutchness” in the way baseball does with WPA. Those values are derived from win probabilities based on the millions of games of baseball played over the years.

  • Defenestration

    I am a believer that no stat can be labeled a bad stat. It is just the information it says it is. It somehow describes something, or a collection of things that have happened. Stats can be useless, meaningless, convoluted, etc. But not “bad.” Where bad comes in is in the interpretation of the stat and how it is used.

    The WPA example that many of us have cited is really a good example. If someone were to judge talent level or context-neutral performance based on WPA, that would be horribly misguided. An extreme, but perfectly applicable, example: Away baseball team scores 10 runs in the top of the first. The away team’s pitcher pitches a no hitter. The no hitter pitcher is going to have a minuscule WPA for the game. The game was already very likely to be won by his team before he did anything. Does this make WPA bad? No, it tells us exactly what it purports to. The away pitcher’s performance (no matter how good it was) had very little effect on the outcome of the game. It doesn’t claim to make any judgments on the performance or the talent level of the player.

    So, what is the issue with QBR? It makes vague claims about what it is measuring and does not reveal how it goes about that. How is someone supposed to apply the stat reasonably then? It is a conglomerate that does not clearly state what it is describing/measuring, how it calculates and weighs the data it uses, or how it should be applied. So for me, I don’t know how to use it. Does it tell me something useful about talent level? Performance? Impact? Potential? Seems like it’s trying to combine these things. If they believe they can do that accurately, the onus is on them to prove it.

    The stat doesn’t say what it is. So how am I supposed to use it?

  • Believelander

    More on QBR:

    A quarterback earns less credit via QBR on a pass completion if his team is dramatically losing or winning. Therefore, because of factors that have nothing to do with the quarterback, his value to them winning or losing a particular game can vastly decline. There is merit to this idea, but the problem is that Brandon Weeden’s QBR is lower because the Browns have been a hemorrhaging pile of suck on defense independent of Brandon Weeden.

    Applying the score of a given game to QBR is certainly a revolutionary idea, but another problem crops up when saying Weeden’s QBR is 60 points lower than RG3′s is that the season QBR acts as though all of the QB’s plays were one giant game. A simple tryst with a calculator shows this – Weeden’s season ‘QBR’ (it really deserves quotations of scorn) is 15.1 but his average QBR is 27.6. This would be fine, except that the passes he threw in a game where they were down 14 points to Buffalo drag down the value of passes he threw in several much closer games.

    Again, Weeden’s QBR (and RAT of 5.1) were completely owned by him for sucking in his first game, but this is where QBR goes off the rails – Ben Roethlisberger is less valuable to the Steelers than Tyler F***ing Thigpen to the 0-16 Lions because the 2008 Steelers are too busy crushing people (in an offense relying heavily on Roethlisberger). Therefore, it is objectively fair to say that Ben Roethlisberger was less valuable to the Steelers winning games in 2008 than he would have been had he played for the Browns. Therefore, QBR may be able to paint some sort of picture of how meaningful Roethlisberger was to the Steelers winning in 2008. The problem is, this obliterates any value of the metric for analyzing HOW GOOD A QUARTERBACK ACTUALLY IS because it relies so heavily on weighting what the QB did based on factors that have NOTHING to do with the QB.

    If you want to say, “Brandon Weeden is worth a 15.1 to the Browns because the Browns suck so bad that Tom Brady couldn’t lead this team to the playoffs”, I might be able to get behind that point. But never in a million years will I be insane enough to think this giant tumor of a sabermetric accurately depicts how good a quarterback actually is, nor should anyone else.

    • Defenestration

      Good points.

  • Believelander

    And finally, another reason to celebrate Tuesday, October 16, 2012: it’s the last day we have to look up Holmgren’s skirt at his gorgeous sex icon right leg.

  • Defenestration

    Dead horse beating:

    Check out how an ESPN writer ranks the AFC North QBs from week six. Take note of the comments, QBR, and grade for each. http://espn.go.com/blog/afcnorth/post/_/id/56957/afc-north-quarterback-report-card-12

    Also of note is that the claim is that QBR is the “most advanced and comprehensive statistic ever devised to measure a quarterback’s value to his team.” No claim as to its accuracy.

    • Believelander

      *reads article*
      *stares at QBR numbers*
      *stares at grades*
      *stares at stats*
      *goes to NFL.com and digs into detailed stats for all 4 games*
      *goes back*
      *stares at grades*
      *stares at QBR*
      *stares at grades*
      *reads article again*
      *loses IQ*
      *mails Defenstration a bomb*

      • Defenestration

        *stops trying to help*
        *locks doors*

    • Beeej

      What the f*** was that? Weeden had the worst QBR of the four (I’m assuming the higher the number the better), but received the best grade for his performance??? That alone should tell you the stat is s***. Dalton’s 3 tds and 3 ints (1 pick 6) have him ranked higher than Weeden, who threw 2 tds and 1 int? If you survive Believelander’s care package, expect to receive some SARS infected blankets from me.

      • Defenestration

        I thought more evidence that the stat is at best unclear in what it tries to tell us would be helpful. Geesh, no good deed, eh? Guess I should stick to my documentarian of new offenses role around here. At least that should free up some time to get my Fashionable Tin Foil Hats manufacturing venture started.

        • ClevelandFrowns

          I don’t think this is that hard. Jamison Hensley says Weeden had a good game. QBR says pretty much every starting QB in the league would have had a better game under the same circumstances. Does this help?

          • Beeej

            Kind of like saying if we had the entire roster for the AFC All Pro team we would be much better than we are with our current roster. #dumbdumbdumbdumbdumb

          • ClevelandFrowns

            Nothing like that, actually.

          • Defenestration

            It would help if it can be explained to me how EPA (an RE24-type stat) combined with Clutch (a WPA/LI-type stat) tells us that pretty much every starting QB in the league would have had a better game under the same circumstances.
            If this can be shown, you still have to be comfortable breaking down the credit for the outcome of each play by position. Not only must you be comfortable with that being possible, you have to believe that they are doing it correctly without knowing how they do it.
            The presence of the clutch factor alone makes it counter-intuitive that the stat should be used to determine how the different QBs in the league would do under the same circumstances.
            So no, it does not help. If there exists an explanation that addresses these things, or at the very least clearly states what QBR should be used to “say,” I would love to be pointed in its direction. ESPN’s explanation does not mention anything about how the different starting QBs would perform under the same circumstances. It says “The Total Quarterback Rating is a statistical measure that incorporates the contexts and details of those throws and what they mean for wins. It’s built from the team level down to the quarterback, where we understand first what each play means to the team, then give credit to the quarterback for what happened on that play based on what he contributed.” I am interested in how one uses that to determine who would or would not have had a better game than Weeden as QB of the Cleveland Browns in week 6.

          • ClevelandFrowns

            Splitting hairs. Maybe a better way to say it is that QBR says Weeden didn’t do anything that every other starting QB in the league, even the worst ones, would have been expected to do.

          • Defenestration

            Here’s the rub. Splitting hairs is important when discussing an “advanced stat.” We shouldn’t have to try to figure out how we should say what it says. ESPN should be clear about what it says and provide information that defends it.

          • Defenestration

            Also, do you believe that a stat that incorporates clutch is well suited to say that “Weeden didn’t do anything that every other starting QB in the league, even the worst ones, would have been expected to do?”
            How much of a player’s performance in situations of different “clutchness” do you think are due to the ability of the player to perform in the “clutch” vs the player’s overall ability?

          • ClevelandFrowns

            “How much of a player’s performance in situations of different “clutchness” do you think are due to the ability of the player to perform in the “clutch” vs the player’s overall ability?”

            Who could know? All you can do is look at how well a player does perform in the clutch, which is what this stat does. The A/R component is isolated from that, as it should be.

          • Defenestration

            I should have said “are likely to be due to the ability…” Clutch plays exist. The question is how likely is it that the outcome of a play of high leverage is due to a repeatable, innate ability in the player to perform in the clutch vs the likelihood that the outcome is due to the player’s overall ability.
            This has been studied in baseball. In baseball, the answer is that there is basically no correlation with how a player hits in clutch situations from season to season. So a guy who appears clutch just happened to have more of his successes occur in higher leverage situations. Not an ability, just “luck” and circumstance.
            So I will ask again, do you believe that a stat that incorporates clutch is well suited to say that “Weeden didn’t do anything that every other starting QB in the league, even the worst ones, would have been expected to do?”

        • Beeej

          I was just joking. I thought it was funny that ESPN was contradicting their super-awesome metric. Weeden had the worst QBR, but the best game of the AFC North QBs. Joseph Heller would have a field day with the QBR.

          • Defenestration

            I got the joking part. My response was in jest.

            I found it rather interesting that a writer for the company who created the stat included it but did not make one mention of it despite the fact that at first glance it seems inconsistent with his views. If there is a reasonable explanation of this, and the problem is with how audiences interpret the stat, I would think there would be motivation to clarify, especially considering how new QBR is. Tom Tango frequently calls out and attempts to explain when other writers misunderstand or wrongly interpret or apply stats like WPA and WAR all the time. Because if people who get it don’t do that, the stats take the hit, not the interpretation, and that is a disservice.

  • GrandRapidsRustlers

    I have spent the last 24 hours looking at QBR and have come to the conclusion that it is complete nonsense.

    This is coming from someone who is in way too deep on the sabermetric side of MLB baseball.

    Arguing where Weeden stands 6 games in is pointless when the same metric as Jake Locker higher than Aaron Rodgers.

    Granted I wanted them to draft Weeden where they did and admit that I am biased that he can be an above average QB for us for the next 4-5 years.

  • Peter

    FSU -15 over Miami

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