The ROPE Index is my self-developed passing efficiency metric, analyzing the play of NFL Quarterbacks. 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 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 Index is put together, including the thresholds for achieving a ‘perfect’ game, you can find my original post explaining it here. I’ve also included the average fantasy points of the quarterbacks (including rushing points), for comparison between the metric ranking and their relative fantasy value.
ROPE Index - Week 12
Season to date the average ROPE Index rating has dropped week on week to 49.8%, with week 12 delivering an average rating of 49.1%. This means the 2017 season is still running at more than 2% behind any of the previous three seasons.
Tom Brady’s recent run of age-defying play has now led him to the top of the ROPE Index, as his 66.7% rating in week 12 was enough take him ahead of Drew Brees in the season long rankings. Overall Brady’s 66.5% rating has him on course for the third best season of his extensive career, behind his record breaking 2007 season (68.6% rating), and last year’s 69.4% rating. Brady leads the league in passing yards (3373), passing touchdowns (26), interceptions (3) and yards per attempt (8.3). Oh and just for good measure, Brady is fifth in average fantasy points with 20.85, third in active players,
Even in a down week for Drew Brees, he still managed to perform well above the league average with a 56.1% rating in the defeat to the Rams. Brees and Brady have put some distance between themselves and new third place quarterback, Matt Ryan, who moved up from sixth after a 77.3% rating against the Buccaneers, his highest of 2017.
The top ROPE Index performance of week 12 came from Philip Rivers in the Chargers’ Thanksgiving victory over the Cowboys. Rivers posted a career high 98.5% rating, which is also the highest rating of any quarterback this season and the highest since Marcus Mariota in week 8 of last season. Rivers’ previous best rating came six years ago, when he posted a 97.0% rating in a week 13 win over the Jaguars. His 28.9 fantasy points were Rivers’ best return of 2017 and the second highest of week 12.
Derek Carr posted the second highest ROPE rating of week 12, with an 81.8% rating in the Raiders’ victory over the Broncos. It was Carr’s second best rating of 2017, and moves him up to 12th in the overall standings.
Brett Hundley had his break out game in the Packers’ defeat to the Steelers, posting his highest ROPE rating (72.7%) and fantasy points (22.4) in his short career. Sadly it was not enough to lead them to victory and the Packers chances of making the post-season are looking increasingly slim.
The story of the week is the benching of Eli Manning, who’s iron man streak of 210 consecutive starts has come to an end as the Giants look to see what they have in Geno Smith and Austin Davis. Taking the massive emotional disappointment I feel at the move by the Giants, Eli is coming off his worst ROPE rating since his rookie season as he posted a 10.6% rating in the loss to the Redskins on Thanksgiving. What the Giants think they’re going to see from Geno Smith with the same collection of poor receivers, running game and O-line is beyond me. Looking back over the last 10 years, only three starting quarterbacks with at least 30 starts have a lower ROPE index rating than Geno Smith’s 46.6%; Blake Bortles (46.5%), Marc Bulger (45.8%) and Blaine Gabbert (44.1%).
Paxton Lynch in his first start of 2017, put up a 15.2% rating, good enough for the third worst of week 12, though he had the lowest fantasy points of the week with 1.64. Lynch had a 3.0% ROPE rating at half time, so ‘bounced back’ considerably before leaving the game in the second half with an injury.
In other starting QB news, its Jimmy Garoppolo time in San Francisco as he was named starter for the week 13 clash with the Bears after a brief cameo at the end of the week 12 defeat to the Seahawks, combined with an injury to rookie C.J. Beathard. The expectations will be through the roof (if there was one on Solider Field) as Jimmy G flashed at the end of last week’s game, going 2 for 2 for 18 yards and a touchdown in garbage time. Garoppolo also flashed when he started the first two games of 2016 for the Patriots during Tom Brady’s suspension, posting ROPE ratings of 65.2% and 83.3% in a pair of victories.
A shout out to Tyrod Taylor, who one week after his unceremonious benching for Nathan Peterman, led the Bills to victory in Kansas City, posting a 47.0% ROPE rating and 14.02 fantasy points. The victory keeps the Bills in the AFC wild card picture, and Taylor in the starting job for another week.
Ben Roethlisberger posted the highest fantasy points of week 12 with 30.5 points in the Steelers’ victory over the Packers. Ben has just under 60 fantasy points in the last two weeks, the most of any quarterback in the league, and though overall he’s still only the 16th ranked fantasy quarterback in 2017, is a must start as the Steelers’ offense is starting to roll down the stretch.