A Unified Theory of Yards Per Attempt in NFL Quarterbacks

In my first look at the Yards per Attempt statistic in National Football League quarterbacks, I found there was a general correlation between Football Outsiders’ offensive line rankings and Yards per Attempt. Although I’m happy to see that there was some correlation, it made future predictions near impossible because FO owns the offensive line rankings.

In this piece, I’m going to see if we can create a better formula for predicting YPA than the one discussed in this Pro Football Focus article. Jonathan Bales used the average of a quarterback’s previous three seasons to predict future YPA numbers. Let’s see how accurate his predictions were for 2012, and how we can improve them. Continue reading A Unified Theory of Yards Per Attempt in NFL Quarterbacks

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Yards per Attempt and 2012 NFL Quarterbacks

This Pro Football Focus article by Jonathan Bales looked at the Yards per Attempt statistic in quarterbacks at the NFL level. He discovered that a quarterback’s Yards per Attempt average over his three most recent seasons will give us a pretty good indication of what he’ll do the following year. Let’s take a look at how his predictions fared, and how we can explain the biggest outlier.

Philip Rivers, San Diego – Rivers had a Y/A average of 8.5 over the past three seasons, despite putting up 7.9 Y/A in 2011. We should have seen that number move toward the average, but through week 14 in the 2012 season he’s recorded only 6.8 Y/A, a drop of nearly 1.67 Y/A. What are some reasons that Rivers’ Y/A fled even further away from the average? Continue reading Yards per Attempt and 2012 NFL Quarterbacks