Text Box: Crew's CornerTIPS AND TRICKSText Box: Quarterback Performance Ratings

I am sure all of you have noticed two ratings for quarterbacks, labeled “A” and “P”.  These ratings can be very important depending on your coaching style.

These two ratings can range from 1 to 10, with 10 being the best and 6 being average

“A” is for Audible

When an audible is called in APC it functions the same as it works in the NFL – the play result is less than if the selected play change were the original play call. There is a cost associated with calling an audible. As with everything, there is risk/reward. Declining to call an audible has no effect on the play, positive or negative.

The risk is that, based on the audible rating, the QB can “misread” the defense and call a really bad play change. So not only is the final play degraded (lower completion %, worse blocking, fewer yards, higher fumble/int rate) but you could possibly change from a good play call to a bad play call.

The reward can be that you change the play from a truly bad play call into something with a higher chance to succeed. 

As a QB’s audible rating increases, there is less play degradation with the new play and a reduced risk of mis-reading the defense. There is generally only one QB with a rating of 10 at either A or P – this year Pat Mahomes has both 10 ratings. For audibles, this means that the play degradation on an audible is pretty much non-existent and the chances of him mis-reading the defense are much lower. A 10 audible rating will sometimes get the play wrong, but he will usually find a way to make it work.

The final note on audible ratings – when a play breaks down and the QB is looking for 2nd or 3rd targets, there is a greater likelihood that a good receiving option will be found. QBs with a poor audible rating will be more likely to stay with the original target and attempt to force the play – creating turnover opportunities.

“P” is for Pressure

The pressure rating for QBs also ranges from 1-10, but does not function for the entire game - only during “pressure” plays.  Pressure plays are as follows:

1. Any play on 3rd or 4th down
2. Any play in the defense redzone (inside the defense 20 yard line)
3. The final 5 minutes of Q2, Q4, or overtime

This rating does not affect how the QB reacts to defense applied pressure through blitzing. That is solely a function pass blocking, QB sack rate, and defense pressure statistics. Do not confuse PLAY pressure with SITUATIONAL pressure.

Whenever the QB is in a “pressure” play, all of his relevant statistics are increased by a “not insignificant amount” according to Dave Koch.

The QB is more likely to throw the ball to or beyond the 1st down marker, is more likely to throw for a TD in the redzone as opposed to leaving the ball short of the goal, is more likely to have success on audibles, and is more likely to read the defense correctly and change the play (even without an audible) into something significant. The QB is less likely to throw an interception.

I have Mahomes in another league – during a game I called a short pass on 3rd-7. The defense played tight and was looking pass. He self-changed the play (no audible) into a 40 air-yards bomb that went for a 70 yard TD. And these kinds of things happen in every game – and generally more than once. It is a good thing to have a QB who can go off script and make things happen. It’s even better that DK has found a simplified way to simulate those qualities.

So while P is technically for Pressure, it is really for “Power”

Now the downside. When the QB is not in a pressure situation, his performance is downgraded. Because there are more non-pressure plays during a game, the downgrade is not as significant per-play as are the upgrades while in a pressure play. Generally speaking a QB with a P rating of 6 will not have many gains or losses due to the rating, if any at all. As the rating decreases the gains are less while the downgrades are greater.