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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Aaron Rodgers Chuckled After Learning that Tim Tebow Had Higher QBR

Much ado was made when it was learned that Tim Tebow had a higher Total Quarterback Rating (QBR) than Aaron Rodgers last weekend. QBR is ESPN’s new creation that rates quarterbacks on a per-play-evaluation. Tebow was fifth among quarterbacks for week five scoring an 83.2. Rodgers was sixth with an 82.1 (full ratings here). When you compare their overall stats for the week, Rodgers appears to blow away Tebow:

Rodgers: 26/39 396 yards, 2 TDs/0 INTs; 1 att -1 yard
Tebow: 4/10 79 yards, 1 TD/0 INTs; 6 att 38 yards, 1 TD

ESPN provides a lengthy explanation why Tebow ranked ahead of Rodgers, and it actually makes a lot of sense. Don’t try explaining it to Rodgers, however, because he may laugh in your face.

Speaking during his weekly visit on WAUK-AM in Milwaukee Tuesday, Rodgers said he chuckled when he saw that Tebow had a higher rating than he did.

“The only time I ever see the QBR is on the bottom line on ESPN,” Rodgers said. “I saw that [Tuesday morning] and chuckled to myself. I played a full game, he played the half. He completed four passes, I completed 26. I think it incorporates QB runs as well.

“The weighting of it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense,” Rodgers continued. “They said a third down in the fourth quarter should mean more than in the first quarter — OK, I get that. A touchdown pass late in the game against a team that’s up by a bunch of points isn’t going to be worth as much. I think when you start putting values, and judging the effort levels a team may be giving up 14, as opposed to tied, or up even ahead by 28, I think you’re getting into some gray areas.”

Rodgers would probably be pleased to know that he’s the season leader in QBR, slightly ahead of Tom Brady, and far ahead of anyone else. Total Quarterback Rating is a stat that helps measure a quarterbacks effectiveness. It’s another tool to use, but it’s not the final word on quarterbacks, just like Passer Rating isn’t.

I have a feeling the Tim Tebow stat was championed by ESPN to garner attention for it.

When you really examine their system, their rating for week five actually makes sense. And just like Barry Petchesky wrote at Deadspin, they’re not telling the Packers to trade Rodgers for Tebow; they’re merely saying Tebow did more in one quarter than Rodgers did in four quarters. I think that’s a fair assessment.



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