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: December 06, 2012, 01:08:41 PM

Quote from: Chase Stuart
Running back success rate

Grading running backs can be tricky; rushing yards tell much of the story but remain a function of opportunity (itself an indicator of talent). Yards per carry sounds nice but often is more misleading than revealing. Last year at Smartfootball.com I analyzed team rushing games using rush success rate, and I will do the same today. Success rate has been around for awhile The Hidden Game of Football wrote about it in the late 80s and Football Outsiders has been tracking it for close to a decade. Everyone has their own unique definition, it seems; here is mine.

+ I started with every play from scrimmage where a running back was credited with a carry. I then removed all instances of 3rd or 4th down carries where the back needed to gain more than 5 yards for a first down, since the primary goal in these situations usually isnt to get the first down. However, on the rare occasions where a running back did convert for the first down, those plays were kept in the data set. This has only happened 20 times this season.

+ On 3rd and 4th down, a success is a rush that gains a first down (or touchdown). A failure is every carry that does not result in a first down.

+ On 2nd down, a success is achieved when the player gains at least 50% of the yards needed for the first down. This means that 2nd-and-8 runs are failures unless they pick up 4 yards; on 2nd-and-7, the running back must also gain at least 4 yards. A rush for one yard on 2nd-and-3 is a failure, and so on.

+ On 1st down, a running back is credited with a successful carry if he gains at least 40% of the yards needed; therefore, four yards are required on 1st-and-10 before the running back is given credit. On 1st and goal from the 5, a two-yard gain would be considered a success.

The league average success rate by these rules is 49.8%. The table below lists all running backs with at least 50 carries, along with their number of rushes (which excludes the excluded carries), number of successful runs, and their success rate. The table is sorted by the far right column, which shows how many successes over 50% of their runs the player had. In the event of a tie, the player with more carries was ranked higher.

1. CJ Spiller
2. Willis McGahee
3. Andre Brown
4. Marshawn Lynch
5. Ryan Mathews
6. Kendall Hunter
7. Stevan Ridley
8. Marcel Reese
9. Adrian Peterson
10. Fred Jackson

50. Doug Martin

http://www.footballperspective.com/running-back-success-rate/#more-4909

FRG is the most logical poster on this board.  You guys just don\'t like where the logical conclusions take you.

Booker Reese

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#1 : December 06, 2012, 01:29:58 PM

Interesting.

I'd just note that Football Outsiders, which cuts off at a minimum of 100 carries, has Martin 16th. They calculate success rates a bit differently (for example, they recognize that late-game carries for teams with leads are often designed to kill time and the hurdles for success are a little lower in that scenario), though they come out with roughly the same percentage. 

JDouble

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#2 : December 06, 2012, 02:08:35 PM

These numbers and equations clearly show Martin sucks. We should draft a new RB immediately.


Booker Reese

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#3 : December 06, 2012, 02:33:04 PM

JD, maybe if you understood them a bit better, you'd know that it doesn't say what you think it does.

Success rate is about consistency on a carry by carry basis, and is just one measure of running back performance.

But keep your fingers in your ears and yell out more names of obscure players who should be on the active roster despite the fact that they are on the fringes of NFL employment if you prefer.   

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#4 : December 06, 2012, 02:51:13 PM

Doug Martin is the most explosive running back to play in Tampa Bay ever, besides Bo Jackson. I could give a crap what these stats say. Anything that ranks Kendell Hunter #6 clearly has some major flaws.

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Madman

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#5 : December 06, 2012, 03:12:00 PM

Pffft. Ryan Mathews ranked 5.

I'll stick to measuring RBs by total yards from scrimmage, YPC, YAC, and TDs.

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#6 : December 06, 2012, 05:09:38 PM

These numbers and equations clearly show Martin sucks. We should draft a new RB immediately.
I believe it reflects much more on the offensive line. The fact that Martin has as many rushing yards as he does while also producing as many negligible plays means he is really maximizing the good opportunities he gets. When you see teams like Buffalo have two players in the top 10 for this metric and San Francisco with two players in the top 20, you know they're getting consistent offensive line blocking no matter who the running back is.

FRG is the most logical poster on this board.  You guys just don\'t like where the logical conclusions take you.

Booker Reese

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#7 : December 06, 2012, 05:13:39 PM

That's a good point - what these stats are saying is "this back with this offensive line in this offense is doing X."

I remember one of the seasons Priest Holmes was doing well with KC, the scores at FO for him, Larry Johnson, and Blaylock were nearly identical. It said more about the scheme and the blocking than it did about the individual running backs.

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#8 : December 06, 2012, 05:21:30 PM

Pffft. Ryan Mathews ranked 5.

I'll stick to measuring RBs by total yards from scrimmage, YPC, YAC, and TDs.
This is only a measurement of who produces the most consistently positive plays.

FRG is the most logical poster on this board.  You guys just don\'t like where the logical conclusions take you.

lyronmewis

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#9 : December 06, 2012, 05:49:34 PM

If you only grind out 4 yards a carry without much deviation from carry to carry, then teams likely aren't going to stack the box against you.

It's not like Martin is dancing in the backfield and getting tackled for losses. He makes quick decisions and shoots the gap hard. There's just not a whole lot there a lot of the time.


JDouble

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#10 : December 06, 2012, 06:04:59 PM



But keep your fingers in your ears and yell out more names of obscure players who should be on the active roster despite the fact that they are on the fringes of NFL employment if you prefer.

Deal!


Hate

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#11 : December 06, 2012, 06:34:21 PM

'f' those sites.... i rely on the 'eye' test!!

-------------------------------------------------------
   

 I thought Lovie said he wanted quickness & speed, even at the QB position?

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#12 : December 06, 2012, 06:45:48 PM

'f' those sites.... i rely on the 'eye' test!!
There's nothing subjective about this. Official NFL stats say Doug Martin gets 40% of yardage needed on first, 50% of yardage needed on second down, and gets whatever is needed on third and fourth-and-short 47% of the time. These are facts. The 'eye' test doesn't change anything.

FRG is the most logical poster on this board.  You guys just don\'t like where the logical conclusions take you.

JDouble

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#13 : December 06, 2012, 08:02:20 PM

'f' those sites.... i rely on the 'eye' test!!

+1



BucDaFackUp

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#14 : December 06, 2012, 08:31:13 PM

That compiled list is pretty subjective but if it makes you feel better....hey....run with it!

That's comin from a big CJ Spiller fan.......
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