I have been thinking about doing this fanpost for awhile but things like work always got in the way. I want to go over Geno Smith and Tyler Wilson's college stats and see how they compare. Now, I have to clarify a few things before I start:
1) You cannot solely use stats to determine if a player is good
2) However, you must use stats as part of the evaluating process.
Please use the following analysis along with watching videos, checking mechanics, etc. to properly evaluate a player.
Now I need to discuss my process. I have taken Geno and Wilson's stats from ESPN so please look there if you have any questions. The thing about stats is that you can't take what ESPN gives you and use is as a comparison because they aren't "even" (I will explain this later.) Also, please be assured that I did not manipulate this data in any way. I think the best way to do this is to go through the process together.
Here are Geno's stats: (I combined all four years for both him and Wilson to even it out. I don't want to compare a "good" year with the other players' "bad" year.)
And here are Wilson's stats:
So, what can we tell off the bat? Well, it appears that Wilson did significantly worse. However, those of you paying attention will notice that Geno also had WAY more attempts passing than Wilson which will skew the results. So, in order to make it even, I took Wilson's stats and multiplied them by .55 to give them both the same number of attempts (it isn't exact, Wilson will have 4 more attempts but I figured it was close enough.) This allows us to see what Wilson's stats could look like if he had attempted the same number of passes as Geno. Please note, this doesn't mean it WOULD happen this way but that, everything else equal, it could happen. Here are is stats after I adjusted them:
Okay, now what? Well, MNChiefsfan and I got into a little discussion about this when we were discussing whether Calvin Johnson broke the Madden curse this year or not (he did not, scoring only 5 TDs the whole season and needing almost 400 yards to do so is not good.) MNChiefsfan mentioned that he cares more about what the play does when they have the ball. I said that scoring points was more important than the number of yards. So, we shall look at both. Here are the stats and I will explain how I got them for you math people. Also, if I make any mistakes, please tell me. While I enjoy (and am decent at math) I do get ahead of myself and make assumptions that I shouldn't. Anyway, the stats:
Yds/TD is how many yards they have to throw before they get a TD. TD/INT ratio is how many TDs they throw before they throw an INT. Yds/game is how many yards they average per game. For you math people, I took the total number above, divided by 4 (per year) and then divided that by 12 (12 games per year.) I did the same for TDs/game. Okay, NOW we have stuff to compare. As you can see, Geno averages a whooping 5 (!) TDs per INT. That is crazy. He also will throw at least 2 TDs in a game on average while Wilson will throw slightly over 1.5. While Geno throws more TDs with less INTS, Wilson's averages more yards per pass slightly. To be fair, Geno's average yards was below 8 but because of rounding was moved up. We also know that it will take Wilson roughly 30 more yards to score a TD than Geno. That would translate to slightly less than 4 extra completions.
Let's take a look at their total yards for a second. Wilson had more yards with less completions. I can see you math people looking at me like "duh, he gets more yards/completion." Yes, this is the reason. However, what would Wilson's stats look like if he completed more of his passes? You may be thinking that it isn't far to compare this and you may be right. The reason I am doing this is because I hear Geno had some stud WRs to throw to so I wonder if that helped his completion %.
Here are the updated stats:
Knowing this, if we keep everything else the same (yds/td, etc.) we can figure out the rest of his stats with the same completion % as Geno. Here is the full list:
So, what does this all mean? Well, if you keep everything (strength of defenses played against, conference, own teams defense, etc.) and go purely on stats, Geno is your guy. He is slightly more accurate and will throw more TD overall, per game, and will take fewer yards to do so. However, we know that in the real word all these things aren't equal. What if Wilson had a better line? What if Geno played in the SEC? We won't know the answers to these questions but what we can tell is that right now both of these players are relatively close statistically (Geno has the edge but he isn't blowing Wilson away.) So, going off of everything (these stats along with everything else we know about the players) who do you like thus far?