Stats Crowd Not Fans Of Kwon

November 13th, 2015
Stat nerds don't like him.

Stat nerds don’t like him.

Oh, Joe can hear the keyboard tapping from here. The numberscrunchers are at it again, and this time, rather than saying America’s Quarterback, Bucs signal-caller Jameis Winston, was the worst quarterback last weekend, their target is another Bucs player.

Like Jameis, this player is a rookie, too; only he plays on the oppposite side of the ball. And that would be Kwon Alexander. A chief spreadsheeter over at Pro Football Focus, Steve Palazzolo, a pitcher by background before he turned stat geek, believes the Bucs’ starting middle linebacker to be one of the worst linebackers in the NFL.

That’s his conclusion watching tape, so he Twittered this afternoon.

The missed tackles, well, that is easy to define. Blowing coverages, well, that assumes the guy doing the grading knows exactly what the responsibilities are for each pass play defended by the Bucs.

Joe’s not a tarot card reader, so he’s not even going to try to pretend he knows exactly what each defender’s responsibility is on each play.

However, Kwon leads the Bucs and all NFL linebackers in passes defended (7). What does that tell Joe? Teams are not scared to throw in Kwon’s direction for whatever reason. So Palazzolo may be on to something here.

That typed, if Kwon was playing as rotten as Palazzolo suggests, then Lovie wouldn’t hesitate to bench him. Lovie is already benching and launching guys with which he has a history. So if Kwon was playing like garbage, as the numberscrunchers believe, Joe’s confident Kwon would have been benched by now.

Besides, do the Bucs win at Atlanta without Kwon? Hell, no.

There is also something else the spreadsheeters scoff at because it cannot be measured with any calculator or Excel software. It’s heart.

Just like Jameis is with the offense, Kwon is becoming the heart and soul of the defense for the way he plays with his hair on fire.

25 Responses to “Stats Crowd Not Fans Of Kwon”

  1. Wesley Says:

    Whatever, kid is pretty damn good.

  2. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    London Fletcher came into the league and was constantly derided because he was only 5-10…far too short for a modern LB. He was great and played close to 20 freaking years in the NFL.

    Stats are for losers.

  3. scott fitzgerald Says:

    He is still a rookie and is playing decent. Tackles will be missed, blown coverage, biting on play fakes.. He has flashes of greatness and seems to improve every game. Thats all that matters. Of course He is not perfect Steve

  4. tb Says:

    This kid is good to hel with the stat geeks.

  5. Love and Warrick Dunn Says:

    Pretty sure he will get better, not worse. He’s already playing better than anyone would have anticipated. Kwon is one of the last on the defense that I’m concerned about.

  6. Couch Fan Says:

    With the exception of the ATL game, I dont think Kwon has played good. Decent but not good. I havent been overly impressed with him but nothing on our Defense has been im pressive.

  7. Defense Rules Says:

    Don’t know if Steve Palazzolo is qualified to be PFF’s chief spreadsheeter Joe, but I have to agree with him on Kwon’s tackling and pass coverage. I’ve seen him get sucked out of position a lot, seen him miss a bunch of tackles that any good MLB should have made, and he consistently doesn’t drop back deep enough when covering the middle.

    But … he’s a rookie, and he’s still learning. Kwon’s got some great talent and a great upside, but learning in the NFL can be painful. Key for him is just to keep learning from his mistakes. Besides, if Bruce Carter were better, I’m sure that he’d be playing MLB right now instead of Kwon.

    Personally I think that Kwon is better suited as a strongside LB, and that he’s too small to be a great MLB. People forget that Brian Urlacher, Lovie’s MLB in Chicago, was 6’4″ and weighed 258 lbs. Kwon’s over 30 lbs lighter. Give up that much beef in the middle and something’s gotta give.

  8. Trubucfan22 Says:

    He typically covers the middle of the field. And that is where the bucs give up the most yardage. Not to say that it is his fault, but his coverage hasnt been good in the tampa 2. But there again thats not all on him. Maybe he’s told to keep everything in front of him, so he plays off coverage and then rallies for the tackle after the catch. Idk if that’s by design or just where kwon is comfortable right now, but that’s what im seeing. All of our LBs are playing that way.

  9. MtBucsFan Says:

    Him and Winston have won rookie of the week twice each. That means they are doing something right. Kwon is a beast and Winston is a gamer. They will both have big careers.

  10. Brad Says:

    I’m always reminded of a quote by David Lee Roth when asked why Van Halen wasn’t as critically regarded as Elvis Costello he replied “Because all the critics look like Elvis Costello.” Stat nerds remind me of music critics who would happily tell you Taylor Swift is better than Led Zeppelin because she has more downloads on Apple Ipod.

  11. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    In order to miss a tackle….you have to get close to the ball carrier…..maybe Kwon is the first one there most every time…

    Also, didn’t everyone know that missed tackles are Lovie Smith’s fault?

  12. Bucs4Life Says:

    I have a feeling Kwon is another guy that next year will be exposed and regress under Lovie and then all these weaknesses will come back up like he is too small, he blows coverages, etc..

  13. Joe Says:

    I’m always reminded of a quote by David Lee Roth when asked why Van Halen wasn’t as critically regarded as Elvis Costello he replied “Because all the critics look like Elvis Costello.”


  14. Buc since '74 Says:

    Didn’t Kwon create a fumble, recover a fumble, and record an INT (and another that was called back for a penalty) all in the same game – which was the first time a rookie did that since 1991? And was rookie Defensive Player of the Week (or Month)? I’m sorry Stat guy – you’re a freakin idiot!

  15. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    I don’t really care what the stats geeks say. Or anyone else. They’re my Bucs. I love them. All of them.

  16. bryan Says:

    I watch gamepass of every game and I certainly cannot tell you if he is in position on every play. However, it is obvious to even an untrained eye like mine that he and others bite way to easy on play action. It is why we are good against the run but get shredded with crossing routes.

  17. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    The kid is a rookie that is learning. What do people expect????

  18. Tim Wansley Says:

    Kwon stinks more than left over rotten fish. He was overrated in college too. Typical 4th rounder, decent back up though

  19. The Guru Says:

    Kwon is terrible in coverage and isn’t tough enough. I’ve seen it in college also. Practice Squad material

  20. StPeteBucsFan Says:


    Practice Squad material

    Seriously? You suggesting that a player who has won one rookie of the week awards in his first 8 games is practice squad material.

    You expect us to take your word over Gil Brandt and the dozens of other NFL experts who rave about Kwon?

    Just curious.

  21. godzilla13 Says:

    Kwon is hot and cold. Hot in Atlanta cold against the Giants. Where did Steve Palazzolo say Kwon Alexander was one of the worst linebackers in the NFL? Call it a stat, call it what you want, making tackles is a performance based requirement especially for a MIKE LB in the Tampa2. Kwon has 17 missed tackles and is on target to surpass the most (24) in a season. Kwon’s biggest liability is in coverage where he waits for play action to unfold before going after his coverage responsibilities and he is usually a step behind the receiver. Kwon has a lot to do with LVD’s performance woes as well as the defense as a whole. I keep saying to use Bruce Carter more in passing downs. When PFF is grading the responsibilities for each pass play defended, they use three separate graders, then a forth to verify. If they are not confident in their score and they all agree, they then do not apply a score to that play. It is not rocket science to determine which player is responsible to defend if the defender is covering or near the receiver. Once again the cynicism and superciliousness reporting on this site for statistical detailed analysis is unfounded.

    Sir, all your big words won’t change Joe’s stance on PFF, no matter how much you huff and puff about how they allegedly go about crafting their data. Joe would suggest you find a new website if you are so troubled by Joe not respecting their work.–Joe

  22. godzilla13 Says:

    I am not troubled by you not respecting Pro Football Focus. I myself am not to happy with PFF either because they no longer give access to their premium stats to the public. The only reason I use PFF as a reference is because they are the only site who provides specific information on players positional performance. For example PFF is the only place where you can find information on QB sacks, hits, hurries and run blocking efficiencies. I love your site because of the free expression of speech used here.

    BTW – Steve Palazzolo never said or implied that Kwon Alexander was one of the worst linebackers in the NFL? Steve simply stated that Alexander is close to their record for most missed tackles in a season and that he is involved in a lot of coverage busts and why is he getting ROTY hype? [Deleted for lies]

    Of course Palazzolo implied that when it comes to starters at the position. It’s not Joe’s fault you don’t get that. There are no fabrications here and you don’t get to insult the host. –Joe

  23. brett Says:

    Yeah the stats guys are definitely generating stuff to sell their products to fantasy geeks and publications that sell to fantasy geeks. GMC, Lavonte, and Kwon are not the long term problems on the Bucs defense regardless of any stats you may come up with this year.

  24. PRBucFan Says:

    Well Said Godzilla

    Definitely never said he was one of the worst LB’s in the league lol.

  25. White Tiger Says:

    The kid is smart, he plays with passion, and he has the one superlative you can’t teach….SPEED.

    I’m a bit of a stat geek, but in context. He’s a rookie playing like a grown man.