March 9th, 2015
The spreadsheeters are really down on Bucs CB Johnthan Banks.

The spreadsheeters are really down on Bucs CB Johnthan Banks.

This is Joe’s take on analytics: It’s a piece of the puzzle. It’s information. But by no means should analytics dictate decisions by an NFL team.

Joe learned way back in high school one can twist numbers to reinforce any given premise.

Sometimes Joe wonders what exactly these guys are watching. Joe’s criticism about analytics was crystallized a couple of years ago by none other than by Bill Belicheat.

Belicheat openly scoffed at Pro Football Focus and their tape-watching ways when he said he must consult with his coaches to find out what players did or did not do wrong after games, as Patriots.com documented at one of Belichat’s press conferences.

“I don’t know how you can know that unless you’re really part of the team and know exactly what was supposed to happen on that play. I know there are a lot of experts out there that have it all figured out but I definitely don’t,” Belichick said.

“I’ve watched plenty of preseason games this time of year and you’re looking at all the other teams in the league and you try to evaluate players and you’re watching the teams that we’re going to play early in the season and there are plenty of plays where I have no idea what went wrong.”

Since, it’s been common for Belicheat to drop beautifully derisive back-handed slaps at the spreadsheeters. Belicheat’s words — “You could go back there and track those stats on whatever, I’m sure there are a bunch of websites that do it – Pro Football Extra or whatever they are.”

With this in mind, Joe read a breakdown on the Bucs by Gordon McGuinness of Pro Football Focus. Joe did a double-take when it was suggested Bucs cornerback Johnthan Banks has “struggled” in the NFL.

Verner has one spot locked down, but who starts along with him in the secondary? Johnthan Banks has struggled in his first two seasons in the league, while Leonard Johnson hasn’t maintained the solid start he made to his career.

This is absurd. If anything, it was Banks who was the best corner for the Bucs last year, not Verner. And Banks was solid as a rookie, even shutting down Calvin Johnson once when Darrelle Revis got hurt.

Hell, Banks, one could argue, was a dark horse candidate for a Pro Bowl nomination. And it was Banks who saved Bucs coach Lovie Smith from a collasal embarrassment — not that finishing 2-14 is anything to be proud of — when Lovie was hellbent on starting stiff Mike Jenkins at corner over Banks. Jenkins got hurt and Banks saved Lovie from shame.

Banks is an up-and-coming corner. Not sure how anyone could study Banks on a regular basis and conclude he has “struggled” playing in the NFL.

40 Responses to ““Struggled?””

  1. Ray Rice Says:

    FUK a spreadsheeter!

  2. 87ForJameisNOMariota Says:

    The Bucs suck and are irrelevant Joe.

    Question solved.

  3. bucsfan4lyf Says:

    I usually don’t agree with you Joe, but you’re spot on with this. Banks only mistake last year was dropping the game winning interception (forgot against who), besides that he was great in coverage and tackling. Imagine how good him and Verner can be if we can fix our pass rush.

  4. Leighroy Says:

    Walterfootball has the same analysis as PFF on Jonthan Banks. You can find it in their top team needs category. I think that’s enough to discredit both of these outfits.

  5. ddneast Says:

    If what you write is true 87forJameis, then go waste your time somewhere else.
    Your no fan so why are you here.

  6. Patrickbucs Says:


    That was against the Vikings.

    I really like Banks and think he’s done really well in spite of our lack if a pass rush.

  7. 87ForJameisNOMariota Says:

    ddneast….because they’ve always sucked. For the most part anyways.

    When you’re irrelevant no one notices the talent on the team…spreadsheeters included.

    Why are you such a spaz?

  8. 87ForJameisNOMariota Says:

    It’s a legit question because I love this team. They suck, but I love them. Just as much as most of us do in here.

    Does that answer your question ddneast?

  9. DraftJameis Says:

    I’ll preface this by saying that I agree with Joe in that analytics is simply a piece of the puzzle and is not perfect by any means. PFF has interesting next-level OBJECTIVE statistics (their film study/grades is certainly questionable.) But I think the line “Banks was solid as a rookie, even shutting down Calvin Johnson once when Darrelle Revis got hurt,” sums up the problem with anti-analytic people. So by this logic, Banks could’ve been torched all season long (I know, he didn’t) and it wouldn’t have mattered, because he shut down Megatron on one given Sunday. The benefit to analytics is that it isn’t biased, and it takes everything the player does into account. People remember the good moments, and don’t remember the times a blocking assignment was missed, etc. If the only Bucs game I watched all season was the Steelers game, I’d be convinced Glennon was a franchise QB.

  10. Tiny Tim Says:

    I am not sure why you bring up these numbers nerd joe. I told you to stop when you posted an article a few years ago on how they stated Ronde Barber sucked based on their analytics and EJ Biggers was one of the best. I knew then that the number geeks are out of their minds!!!! I know its your site, but please Joe, stop giving the numbers geek the ink that you do. Waste of our time reading their crap!!!

  11. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Hat Tip Patrick Willis

  12. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Analytics has always played a major role in sports. And like it or not— its part of your everyday life.

  13. mikeh Says:

    I agree well said 87 there is no denying it.

  14. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    So Raiders agreed to sign Rodney Hudson to a five-year, $44.5 million contract that will make him one of the NFL’s highest-paid centers. Yet they decided to not sign-center Stefen Wisniewski.


  15. mikeh Says:

    yes but you have to admit no QB in this league could have done much with that awful O line just plain s****d. and no running game. because of same.

  16. PRBucFan Says:

    87 quit being all emo lol

  17. Supersam Says:

    I’m gonna have to agree with these guys, I though banks really struggled. Go back and watch the film, he got absolutely got roasted in Atlanta. He had a decent games, Cleveland and Cincinati. I wouldn’t be surprised if we draft a corner high this year. Vermeer got better as the year went along

  18. Supersam Says:


  19. PRBucFan Says:

    And I see my dude LUV is still consistently posting updates on the comment section ahahahaha. Do your thing broski 😀

  20. OneLove Says:

    Joe, can you please get off Jonathan Banks’ wang??!! You are making it sound like this kid is the next Ronde Barber!

    He has struggled playing at this level. He isn’t by any means putting anyone on lock down and please stop referring to that “ONE” game when he had a decent game against Calvin Johnson after Revis got hurt! Even Mike Glennon and Josh McCown had good games! That doesn’t mean they are ever going to be pro bowlers.

    Lets stop with this nonsense writing and actually speak the truth. I mean you might as well change the URL to http://www.foxnews.com with all these lies.

  21. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Took Rhonde what? 5 years to do well?

    Banks is looking better quicker.

  22. bucrightoff Says:

    I’m telling you if the Bucs pass on Winston, well 87 will get himself banned undoubtably, but the meltdown will be epic and a major highlight of this website’s existence.

  23. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    87ForJameisNOMariota Says
    “…because they’ve always sucked. For the most part anyways.”

    Say what?????

    Man…’87, that shows how little time you’ve been a fan.

    You forget the division wins early on, the ten year defensive domination, and multiple division wins in the 2000s, and a super bowl.

    That’s not “always suck.”

    “When you’re irrelevant no one notices the talent on the team…”

    That is true.

  24. BuccaneerBonzai Says:


    He may have struggled, but it’s to be expected.

    With Barber, he was in his 5th year before he started really producing. Up until then, he pretty much looked bad except for a couple plays.

  25. LUVMYBUCS Says:


    Glad to see you back brotha.

  26. Tiny Tim Says:

    BuccaneerBonzai Says:
    March 9th, 2015 at 1:53 pm

    Took Rhonde what? 5 years to do well?

    Banks is looking better quicker.


    I totally disagree. It took Ronde 5 years before he made a pro bowl. He was doing well prior to that though.

  27. lurker Says:

    interesting twitter…

    Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter
    · 3h 3 hours ago
    NFL: “League office is beginning investigations into a number of reported agreements with clubs. Violations will be dealt with accordingly.”

  28. bucgatr Says:

    JBanks is gonna be a star.

  29. kraymuthaphukinglocz Says:

    id rather watch all games of last season even it was a nightmare I just cant wait for the season to start

  30. Steve Says:

    dude has no clue what he is talking about

    Banks is a BEAST

  31. bucrightoff Says:

    lurker Says:
    March 9th, 2015 at 2:13 pm
    interesting twitter…

    Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter
    · 3h 3 hours ago
    NFL: “League office is beginning investigations into a number of reported agreements with clubs. Violations will be dealt with accordingly.”

    Translation: Nothing is going to happen. They did this last year, went all huff and puff, and nothing happened. The NFL wants this because NFL free agency is bigger than every other sport going on combined right now. They love the coverage and will do nothing to change it. Why would they?

  32. Bill Says:

    Joe, It’s true that statistics can be used to reinforce a predetermined conclusion. It’s also true that peers can usually identify (or at least question) that when it happens.

    NFL teams address this problem by hiring their own staff. They don’t rely on the secret models of public websites, lol.

  33. 87ForJameisNOMariota Says:

    Bonzai…the SB win and playoff appearances are a blip on the radar and most people in here know I’ve only been a fan since 1987, so I don’t count 1979 or 81.

    For the most part this franchise has sucked and that’s without question.

  34. DallasBuc Says:

    Banks was a bright spot on an otherwise miserable team and defense but let’s not start saying that he saved Lovie from shame. That is some bold hyperbole not supported by any facts. Lovie’s horrible decision-making from hiring his own GM and making McTrash his starting QB to allowing Collins and Johnson a spot on the roster this late into 2015 is all miserably shameful. The mountain of shame this man should feel is inescapable.

  35. Tom Says:

    Espn also gave Banks a poor grade regarding team needs, and I’m wondering if these people are watching the same guy?

  36. Not "The Kevin" Says:

    Banks was just fine last season. First year playing Lovies D. I still don’t understand why our corners do no press the receivers at the line/snap. EVER!!! It drives me insane. JAM THEM!!!!! I hope one day soon our Bucs corners start doing what other good defenses do. It’s not they’re fault it’s the coaching. Maybe with Lovie and Jason not tanking in 2015 we will see more of this at times along with a better pass rush….

    The thing that sucks the most is nobody wants to come play here…

  37. JFF Says:

    Bucs fans have been delusional about Banks from the jump. He has no transitional quickness and gets beat routinely on routes that break back to the QB. He makes the occasional play but that doesn’t make up for all the 1st downs he gives up. The Rams game in particular was memorably bad from Banks.

    Banks belongs on a team like Seattle that plays their corners close to the line in press-man or cover 3, with a good pass rush in front of him. Part of the problem is the Bucs play him in off-man a lot and he gets burned on long-developing routes like deep digs.

  38. gt40bear Says:

    PFF has been a non-entity since they sold us a bill of goods on Anthony Collins. Remember they told us that Collins was one of the best LTs in the NFL in 2013. #epicfail! Analytics may be ok to use in baseball, but absolutely useless in football because it can’t measure a player’s heart, toughness and willingness to play hard once he gets paid!

  39. Brandon Says:

    Everybody struggled on D at first l season, Bks was no different. I can understand Lovie wanting Jenkins to start, he knew the system better than any player on the roster. He probably would’ve been better than Banks at the start of the season.

  40. Matthew Says:

    It’s fairly obvious some people have a real hatred for math on these boards. No one worth a damn in the analytics community would tell you the numbers are the only thing that matters, this is a straw man argument used by people who don’t take the time to understand analytics so they just want to dismiss them. Analytics are used in conjunction with tape, evaluations, and coaches input to make a more “informed” decision, that’s it. Why anyone is opposed to additional information, I’ll never understand. Any fool screaming stats are for losers or analytics don’t matter; is a troglodyte. These are the same people who enjoy First Take and MMQB where there football analysis can be summed up in easily digestible idiot bites such as: “ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL! ADD HYPERBOLE & TIRED CLICHES FIRE IN THE EYES! WIN THE TRENCHES! BOOM BAM TOUGHNESS! WANT IT MORE!” Just total useless nonsense.