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NFL Pass Indexes: Quarterback & pass defense rankings through Week 10

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Using my ROPE & ROPED Indexes to rank quarterbacks and pass defenses through week 10.

Minnesota Vikings v Washington Redskins Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

The ROPE (Quarterbacks) and ROPED (Pass Defense) Indexes are my self-developed passing efficiency metrics, analyzing both the offense and defense. Based loosely on the passer rating formula, I have taken it further by analyzing data that looks at receiving, blocking and pass rushing to give a more rounded view of the passing offense. In total there are six metrics that are measured to give a ROPE/ROPED Index score; completion percentage, yards per attempt, yards per completion, touchdown percentage, interception percentage and adjusted sack rate. For a full breakdown of the way the ROPE and ROPED Indexes are put together, including the thresholds for achieving a ‘perfect’ game, you can find my original posts explaining them here(ROPE) and here (ROPED).

In addition, I’ve added the average fantasy values of both the quarterbacks (including rushing points), and pass defenses for comparison between the metric and the relative fantasy value.

ROPE Index - Week 10

Season to date the average ROPE Index rating sits at 49.9%, so pretty much as average as you can get. This is the lowest average rating througgh week 10 since the 2013 season (average 48.8%), and over 2% below any of the last three seasons.

Another week and another consummate performance by Drew Brees for the Saints with a ROPE Index rating of 65.2% against the Bills. Despite throwing for his lowest passing yards (2398) through week 10 of his entire Saints career, Brees has been super efficient and has posted his second highest ever ROPE Index rating over that period, with only his 2013 rating of 68.2% surpassing it.

With Alex Smith on his bye week, Tom Brady and Jared Goff both improved their season rating with week 10 performances of 74.2% and 75.8% respectively as both the Patriots and Rams won comfortably. Matt Ryan has risen two places to fifth to stand with a season long rating of 59.3%. Though improving, Ryan is well of his 2016 MVP pace where his rating through week 10 was 68.6%. Whereas Ryan improved his overall standing, Dak Prescott had the biggest slide in the top 10 this week from 5th to 8th as he posted his second lowest rating of 2017 (36.4%) after being sacked eight times and fumbling twice in the Cowboys’ loss to the Falcons.

The quarterback that improved the most on last week was Case Keenum, who moved up four places from 12th to 8th. Keenum threw for 4 touchdowns for the first time in his career and posted a ROPE rating of 80.3%, his second highest of his 2017 season. On the flip side, Marcus Mariota posted his lowest rating of 2017 (31.8%) as the Titans narrowly defeated the Bengals, and dropped six places in the rankings, from 12th to 18th.

The highest ratings of week 10 came from a pair of rookies, CJ Beathard of the 49ers and the new Buffalo Bills starter, Nathan Peterman. Beathard had a career high 86.4% rating as he completed over 75% of his passes against the Giants, and his 25 fantasy points were the 4th best by a quarterback in week 10. Peterman stepped in in garbage time to take over from the benched Tyrod Taylor to post a 81.8% rating in the first competitive action he’s seen since being drafted this year. Taylor posted the lowest ROPE rating of his career at just 6.1%, which has left the door open for Peterman to establish himself as the starter for the rest of the season and puts Taylor’s long term future for the Bills in question.

Both Brett Hundley of the Packers and Mitchell Trubisky of the Bears have now attempted enough passes (>100) to qualify for the season-long rankings. They’ve slotted in next to each other in 33rd (Trubisky) and 34th (Hundley) respectively.

In fantasy terms, Cam Newton dominated week 10, posting over 35 fantasy points as he threw for four touchdowns and ran for nearly 100 yards as we got to see the 2015 MVP level Cam torching the worst team in football (per my RODS rankings)

Kirk Cousins had a mixed week, posting the second highest fantasy points of week 10 with 27.6 points as he rushed for two touchdowns against the Vikings. However his ROPE rating (51.5%) was only good enough the 17th best of week 10.

ROPE Index: Week 10

ROPED Index - Week 10

In terms of the ROPED Index, a statistical analysis of the NFL’s pass defenses, one team continues to sit atop the mountain, and that remains the Jaguars. Their week 10 effort of 51.5% was pretty average as they allowed two passing touchdowns in a game for the first time this season. It was also the first game this season where they failed to register a single sack. However, if was enough to stay clear of the Steelers, Rams and Saints who all remained in their respective positions inside the top four. The Jaguars face the Browns in week 11 and my bottom rated quarterback in DeShone Kizer, so would hope to get healthy this week and re-establish their dominance against the pass.

The Raiders stay bottom despite their bye week, with the Giants dropping to 31st after their capitulation against the 49ers. The Giants allowed the highest completion percentage against them all season (76.0%), as well as failing to register a sack for the second week in a row.

ROPED Index: Week 10