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PFF Grades for Bills players...Yeah, Fitz actually DOES suck!

Pro Football Focus Fitz 3 Year Comparison Player Grades Team Grades Best and Worst Bills

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#1 matter2003

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 07:38 PM

I have a subscription to PFF due to working on a football project, so I have access to all their advanced stat grades.  Basically they grade every player on every play during the season and keep a cumulitive grade for them the entire season.

I am going to give you the Best and Worst 7 player grades for the Bills(not including special teams) so we can have some dialogue...I have to admit some of these were pretty surprising to me:

Top 7 Bills Grades(Previous Year Grade)

1) Kyle Williams: +29.4(-2.2 due largely to injury as he was +44.2 in 2010) 3rd highest DT grade in the NFL(Atkins, McCoy)
2) CJ Spiller: +25.4(+7.9) 2nd highest RB grade in the NFL(Peterson)
3) Jairus Byrd: +23.7(+15.3) 2nd highest S grade in the NFL(Weddle)
4) Andy Levitre: +17.3(+19.2)  9th highest G grade in the NFL
5) George Wilson: +12.4(+1.0) 8th highest S grade in the NFL
6) Mario Williams: +10.0(+8.4 with Houston---despite playing under 1/4 of total snaps due to injury) 17th highest DE grade in NFL(directly ahead of Peppers)
7) Stevie Johnson: +9.8(+8.6) 25th highest WR grade in the NFL
***Alex Carrington(+8.9 on defense/+5.7 special teams for +14.6 total would be included if I looked at special teams)---he had a tremendous year and looks like he is becoming a very good player...

-Big surprise to me on this list is George Wilson, who I thought played rather poorly overall this year, but he had a much higher grade this year than he did last year(+1.0), when I thought he played really well,  so what do I know, apparently...Kyle Williams had another good year for the Bills, even playing hurt, and Spiller obviously would have been number 1 if he had more touches...Byrd made a HUGE jump from last year and its obvious he is getting ready to hit his prime...Bills would be foolish to let him walk...Levitre actually had a slightly WORSE year than last year, but still very solid.  Mario had a decent year, not great, but nowhere near as bad as people have made out to be...

Worst 7 Bills Grades(Previous Year Grade)

1) Ryan Fitzpatrick: -18.6(-5.6) 35th ranked QB---4th from bottom
2) TJ Graham: -15.3(NA) 105th ranked WR---WORST ranked WR in the NFL = B. U. S. T. now we see why he couldn't get on the field
3) Mark Anderson: -12.5(+14.5 with New England---2nd highest on defense)
4) Justin Rogers: -9.9(-1.1) 107th ranked CB in the NFL---7th from bottom
5) Erik Pears: -7.2(+6.4) mainly due to playing with injury...
6) Kyle Moore: -7.1(-2.5) 49th ranked DE in the NFL
7) Aaron Williams: -6.6(N/A) 92nd ranked CB in the NFL(tied with Nate Clements)...

-No surprise that Fitzpatrick was no the list, but to see him as having the single worst grade on the entire team was very surprising to me. So obvious he needs to go, especially since he got worse, actually MUCH worse than last year.  In fact, Fitz had only 1 game where he graded higher than +1.0 this year, and that was in week 9 against Houston(+1.3), where he had the benefit of the bye to have an extra prep week...In fact, Fitz was so bad, he graded out higher than only 3 other QB's in the NFL...John Skelton(-20.2), Mark Sanchez(-22.1), and Brandon Weeden(-30.0). In comparison, Peyton Manning led the league with +53.2.  14 QBs had a grade of +10 or higher, including Miami's rookie QB Ryan Tannehill at 11.2...

-Something that WAS surprising however, was that Mark Anderson had as poor a grade as he did after having the second highest grade on New England's defense last year, and missing a large part of the year.  If he stayed healthy and played as poorly as he did early in the year, Anderson would have had the worst grade by far and away of any Bills player. Graham had a pretty awful year, which was bore out as him being the second worst graded player.  Rogers struggled badly, which is no shocker...Pears was injured so a lot of his poor play was due to that, IMHO since he had a good grade last year....Moore and Williams both struggled to make plays...

-the Bills and Chargers were the only 2 teams to have 3 CB's each receive a grade of -4.0 or lower(Gilmore -4.2, Williams -6.6, Rogers -9.9)---Gilmore will get better, but boy we need some help at the other corner...

Now onto something that bodes well for the Bills:

We have arguments on the forums of how much better the Bills are, if at all since 2010 when Gailey took over, and I am happy to shed some light on it based on the overall team grades at PFF.  The Bills, are in fact better, and significantly so.

In 2010, the Bills had a team grade of -91.9, which improved to +49.6 in 2011 and more than doubled in 2012 to +111.9.

This team is on the right track, with better players,which is born out in the individual grades as well over that timeframe if you look at the players who received a grade of +1.0 or higher and the players who received a grade of -1.0 or lower:

In 2010, the offense was +5/-16 and the defense was +6/-17 for a total of +11/-33(11 players had a grade of +1.0 or better, 33 had a grade of -1.0 or worse)

In 2011, the offense was +11/-13 and the defense was +7/-15 for a total of +18/-22

In 2012, the offense was +12/-6 and the defense was +12/-11 for a total of +24/-17---the first time the + players outnumbered the minus players on this team...

We are headed in the right direction and with a few more players and a better coaching job, this could easily be a playoff team next year. As an added, highlight, and someone who appears to be a diamond in the rough(other than Carrington), is Chad Rhinehart, who had the 3rd highest grade on the team in 2011 at +16.1, and led all offensive lineman in run blocking with +4.9(Lee Smith led the team in run blocking at +5.0)...Kraig Urbik had a +8.3 grade in 2011 and a +6.7 grade this year, so while good, it appears that Rhinehart is the better player...Cordy Glenn had a +6.7 grade to lead all rookies this year.

So in summary, we are headed in the right direction talent wise, we CANNOT afford to lose our 3rd(Byrd) and 4th(Levitre) best player on the team in UFA, we have improved steadily and measurably since 2011 even if it doesn't look like it to the naked eye, Alex Carrington is about to blossom into a potential star, and Chad Rhinehart is a diamond in the rough.  Oh yeah, Fitz is bad and regressed very badly this year to have his worst season as a starter for the Bills. We also have the 3rd, 15th and 16th ranked DT's by grade in the NFL(Williams, Carrington, Dareus)

Edited by matter2003, 09 January 2013 - 09:32 PM.


#2 Magox

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 07:41 PM

Thanks for the post

#3 matter2003

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 08:03 PM

Pro Football Focus grades all players on every play for every team.  Surprisingly, the Bills defensive players had the 9th highest combined defensive grade in the NFL at +48.1, showing this team has talented players that were put in bad positions or not utilized properly by their coaches...

The defense should be a quick fix for Pettine, we have good players.

#4 You herd it hear last

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 08:55 PM

Super-fantastic post!... best I've seen in a while here. Kudos to matter2003..

#5 Edwards' Arm

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 08:56 PM

Great OP! :thumbsup: Your numbers reinforce my suspicion that the talent level on the Bills has been increasing the past few years, even if that has not yet been borne out by the win/loss record.

#6 Fixxxer

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:07 PM

Great post, thanks for sharing matter2003.

What was Kelsay grade last year? PFF is really a very interesting site.

#7 matter2003

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:13 PM

View PostFixxxer, on 09 January 2013 - 09:07 PM, said:

Great post, thanks for sharing matter2003.

What was Kelsay grade last year? PFF is really a very interesting site.

No problem guys.  Kelsay's grade was -5.1, ranking him 45th...directly above him at 44?  Elvis Dumervil, he of one of the largest contracts in the NFL for a DE...talk about lack of return on their investment for the Broncos...

Mario, for as bad as he played before the surgery, ranked 17th...directly behind Chandler Jones at 16th and ahead of Julius Peppers at 18th...

TJ Graham also finished with the lowest grade in the NFL for a WR in 105th place...unless something drastic changes, looks like he is going to be a bust...

Edited by matter2003, 09 January 2013 - 09:14 PM.


#8 Playoff Bound

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:15 PM

View Postmatter2003, on 09 January 2013 - 08:03 PM, said:

Pro Football Focus grades all players on every play for every team.  Surprisingly, the Bills defensive players had the 9th highest combined defensive grade in the NFL at +48.1, showing this team has talented players that were put in bad positions or not utilized properly by their coaches...

The defense should be a quick fix for Pettine, we have good players.

I share this opinion. I think the coaches have a lot to do with the performance of the players by the systems they put into place. That is why good teams can lose key players and still perform as an offensive or defensive unit. The Bills coaches were just bad. These stats just confirm that.

#9 San Jose Bills Fan

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:20 PM

Remember Gailey at his farewell press conference (paraphrasing)?

"I know we've improved. I just can't prove it."

View PostPlayoff Bound, on 09 January 2013 - 09:15 PM, said:

I think the coaches have a lot to do with the performance of the players by the systems they put into place. That is why good teams can lose key players and still perform as an offensive or defensive unit. The Bills coaches were just bad. These stats just confirm that.

Bad coaching is what we saw last year.

One common symptom of bad coaching is demoralized performances by the players.

#10 Billshank Redemption

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:22 PM

Literally cant thank you enough for this post, one of the best I have seen in a long time. Really appreciate your insight and comments definitely a good indicator of where our team is at.

could you also give gilmores grades?

#11 Matt in KC

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:32 PM

What do positive vs. negative numbers mean?  Does this above or below average compared to others at the same position?

Thanks for posting this!

#12 AJ1

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:36 PM

Do they grade coaches?   Ours would have gotten about -200.0.

Edited by AJ1, 09 January 2013 - 09:40 PM.


#13 San Jose Bills Fan

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:36 PM

View PostMatt in KC, on 09 January 2013 - 09:32 PM, said:

What do positive vs. negative numbers mean?  Does this above or below average compared to others at the same position?

Thanks for posting this!

Good question.

It seems from the discussion that the more snaps a player played, the more his score could change.

I'm thinking the scores are cumulative and not mean averages.

#14 matter2003

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:41 PM

View PostSan Jose Bills Fan, on 09 January 2013 - 09:36 PM, said:

Good question.

It seems from the discussion that the more snaps a player played, the more his score could change.

I'm thinking the scores are cumulative and not mean averages.

Yes the scores are cumulative---basically what happens is every play they are involved in, the player is assigned a grade, it could be +2.0, -2.0 or anywhere in between.  At the end of the game, they add up all his points for each play and give him a grade.  At the end of the year, they add up all his points for each individual game and give him a cumulative grade for the entire year.  Positive means good, negative means bad.

The Bills players have graded out significantly higher each year Gailey was here, and it should have shown up in their record a lot more than it did...

Here is a thorough description of their grading system:

http://www.profootba.../about/grading/

Edited by matter2003, 09 January 2013 - 09:42 PM.


#15 Best Player Available

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:42 PM

Great well crafted information, and post. M.Williams grade is hard to believe, but it is what it is.

If you decide to expand it. I wonder what Moorman grades at versus Powell, and Moorman's dallas grade. I thought the cut was political more than a performance, or salary purge. I don't know if any of that would show up in the grading though?

#16 stevestojan

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:45 PM

Quality Post. First I've seen here in a long time. Thanks.

#17 Dragonborn10

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:47 PM

View Postmatter2003, on 09 January 2013 - 08:03 PM, said:

Pro Football Focus grades all players on every play for every team.  Surprisingly, the Bills defensive players had the 9th highest combined defensive grade in the NFL at +48.1, showing this team has talented players that were put in bad positions or not utilized properly by their coaches...

The defense should be a quick fix for Pettine, we have good players.
Or it means this analysis is wrong. They gave up points in near record fashion.  Kyle Williams was neutralized nearly the entire year.  If he is the third best DT in the league then the rest of the DT's are awful.  He was non-existent this year.

#18 Jim in Anchorage

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:49 PM

What was the sacred cow Marcell's score?

#19 Dr. Trooth

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:51 PM

Fitz sucks? First I've heard about that.  How do the rest of you feel?

#20 NoSaint

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 09:53 PM

View Postmatter2003, on 09 January 2013 - 09:41 PM, said:



Yes the scores are cumulative---basically what happens is every play they are involved in, the player is assigned a grade, it could be +2.0, -2.0 or anywhere in between.  At the end of the game, they add up all his points for each play and give him a grade.  At the end of the year, they add up all his points for each individual game and give him a cumulative grade for the entire year.  Positive means good, negative means bad.

The Bills players have graded out significantly higher each year Gailey was here, and it should have shown up in their record a lot more than it did...

Here is a thorough description of their grading system:

http://www.profootba.../about/grading/

Unfortunately a qb can pretty well cancel out most of a team





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