When Stats Lie

November 2nd, 2017

Misleading stat.

Long-time readers of Joe know how dubious Joe is of many stats.

Joe learned in high school anyone can twist numbers and stats to fit any narrative they are trying to push.

And Joe is an oft-spoken critic of quarterback ratings, which in the big picture are little more than hocus pocus. As Joe has repeatedly explained, if you believe in quarterback ratings, then you also believe Chad Pennington was a better quarterback than Dan Marino and Sideshow Bob was a better quarterback than Roger Staubach.

And now, right here on this page, the two meet (misleading stats and quarterback ratings) and Joe catches the stats in a big fat lie.

Per the numberscrunchers at BSPN NFL Matchup, the No. 9 signal-caller in quarterback ratings for first-quarter play is none other than America’s Quarterback, Pro Bowler Jameis Winston. On face value, Joe guesses that’s OK.

But wait!

Just this week, Joe ran a story about how the Bucs have only scored three touchdowns on their opening drives in the past three seasons, which is dead last in the NFL. How can Jameis be such a strong first-quarter QB when he and the offense can’t score TDs?

Help Joe out here? Well, actually, Joe doesn’t need any help. This is just further evidence of what Joe has been preaching for years: That quarterback ratings are the WAR of the NFL. WAR is a baseball stat the geeks try to shove down people’s throats as legitimate and it may be the most bullsh!t of statistics ever drummed up.

27 Responses to “When Stats Lie”

  1. NFLNut Says:

    Mariota’s at the bottom of a lot of charts this year … the kid has regressed terribly which I don’t take any joy in as he’s an awesome young man and I hope for the best for him even if I don’t think he’s anywhere near the QB Jameis is.

    I’m actually shocked Derek Carr made the top 10 … he’s had some atrocious games this year.

    JOSH McCOWN for MVP, hahahaha

  2. Bob Says:

    Don’t make me laugh! That stat has to be a joke… what game we’re we moving the ball 1st qtr? Please

    Just like the stat “2nd passing offense in the NFL” is misleading. Don’t need rankings to tell me that we can’t move the ball consistently against any NFL team.

    At least not until were down by 10+ with 5 min left. Then we look like an elite offense.

  3. Bob Says:

    And what’s funny(sad) is that we were picked apart (IN THE FIRST QUARTER) by the 3rd worst first qtr qb. LOL! This team man

  4. Defense Rules Says:

    Is this what the Bucs’ season has come down to and we’re not even to the halfway mark? Conversations about whether our QB is being fairly rated as the #9 QB in the entire NFL for 1st quarter play? Whether stats lie?

    How about another stat that doesn’t lie. After 7 games the Bucs are 2-5. That’s it. That’s the only stat that means diddly to us fans. Football is a T-E-A-M sport. Individual stats are meaningless; well, except at contract time. LOTS of Bucs are underperforming right now … and that’s being kind. Note to Joe: Jameis is one of them. There’s clearly something wrong. I fully expect our HC, our OC & our QB coach to figure out what it is & help him fix it. That’s not happening right now. But if they expect to keep their jobs, they’d better figure it out. And fast.

  5. 1sparkybuc Says:

    Great work ethic and great cheerleader. Not great at third down conversions. Elite is out of the question. Do we need to draft some competition? I keep hoping the light will come on for Jameis. He’s inconsistent and throws too many interceptions in his third year. I love his enthusiasm and attitude, but it’s not translating into wins. Koetter should consider benching him soon. We’re not going to make the playoffs anyway. Maybe Jameis could learn by watching. He’s clearly not learning by playing.

  6. Doctor Stroud Says:

    “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881)

  7. I Bleed Red Says:

    2 words ….Marcus Mariota ….what could have been smh

  8. Reach87 Says:

    Cannot argue with the bottom line of wins and losses but its not so bad as to abandon the team and give up on the season yet. Individually each phase of our team has shown that they can be ok to dominant (in a range) at some point. I have confidence we’ll stop playing “whack-a-mole” soon and start playing more consistently in all three phases at the same time. Despite what some claim, I don’t see an effort or skill issue as the key problem. To me its more game management at key times (1st and 2nd down sets the stage for 3rd down on noth sides of the ball). Make it easier for ourselves on the first two and be precise in the 3rd. We have been doing the opposite, and it seems like a small thing but it adds up to an anemic offense and a defense that can’t get off the field and yields momentum. All fixable. Keep the faith. Go Bucs!

  9. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.

    Aaron Levenstein

    Yet, individuals use statistics as a drunk man uses lamp-posts — for support rather than for illumination.

  10. HowToSpellRhonde Says:

    Joe continues his obnoxious comparison of Colon Kaepernick to Sideshow Bob based on perceived similarities of look. Is it then safe to say this Joe resembles the appearance of the character known as Comic Book Guy, Jefferey Albertson?

  11. Mick Says:

    This is because it it not Winstons problem in the first quarter.
    If is always dumb penalties that kill the drives almost every time.

  12. Bird Says:

    Defense rules –

    Absolutely correct. And hey everyone McCown has 1 more win than we do and he has 1/4 the talent we do on offense. Name 1 wide receiver / weapon for them (beside ASJ )

  13. JabooBuc Says:

    Actually Jameis moved the ball downfield in the 1st half quite well this past weekend only to be met with costly untimely penalties. I also believe there was a 3rd down drop by Evans that literally hit him in the chest. Point being, the demise of this team has been a total team effort and not Jameis.

  14. BoJim Says:

    Man. How’d we ever let go of McCown?

  15. Conte Piscateli Says:

    It’s a bad stat because of the sample size for Winston. Or first quarters usually go: the other team possess the ball for five minutes, scores touchdown. Bucs get ball, run up the middle twice for-2 yards complete an 8 yrs hitch then point. Other team possess the ball for 8 minutes, scores touchdown. Bucs get ball, throw incomplete bomb, run for 3 yards end of quarter.

  16. Bucsfanman Says:

    @LUV- “Yet, individuals use statistics as a drunk man uses lamp-posts — for support rather than for illumination.”

    I’m just letting you know that I’m stealing this!!! LMAO! Very apropros!

  17. gilhealy Says:

    Great, yet another article to give everyone a chance to rail on Jameis. What a media. Let’s not support the kid. Let’s harp on what he hasn’t done as well as we’d like him to do. God I hope he leaves this sad sack town.

  18. Patrickbucs Says:

    Yeah gilhealy he would be receiving nothing but praise in NY and Chicago, cmonman.i

  19. mike malarkey Says:

    but yet you made an article about our RB not getting 100 yards in a game but you are weary of stats not eh?

  20. Season Is Over Says:

    Because he moves the ball and then folds past the opposing 40 early in the game. Anyone watching can see this. There is no mystery.

  21. gilhealy Says:

    I doubt “nothing but praise” Patrickbucs, but maybe an understanding of growing pains and an appreciation of what’s to come. The media and fans here have unrealistic expectations from a kid having played a little more than 4 yrs of major football, including college. Run him out of town with the constant whining and demeaning nature prevalent on a daily basis. Good idea. Why would he and his family want to reward the area when the fruits of his labor start to blossom? This kids got at least 5-7 years till his prime. But the majority of the fan base and media want him to be a finished product now. They nitpick any positive article or aspect of his game and find a negative to even the score. Most of these ingrates didn’t know which way was up in their life at 23, much less 21. This is why for the most part I don’t even bother to comment here. It’s amateur hour. I know what Jameis is all about, and I can wait for the unleashing of his talent. The Bucs problems are not #3. But, what the hell, lets pile on anyway.

  22. Pepsi Says:

    Stats mean nothing…except when Martins YPC is below 4.0. then its obvious he sucks

  23. BuccaneEric75 Says:

    Interceptions are a big stat in QB rating. I think most of Winston’s INTs happen after the 1st quarter.

  24. ben Says:

    Lets do the draft over and pick the other qb…o’well , as a long time season tkt holder,i should be use to the bucs losing(but keeping hope alive) …

  25. unbelievable Says:

    Good stuff LUV!

  26. LakeLand Says:

    They move the ball in the 1st quarter, they just don’t score TDs.

  27. Joe Says:


    but yet you made an article about our RB not getting 100 yards in a game but you are weary of stats not eh?


    For generations 100-yards rushing in a game has been the standard measuring stick to a good game for a running back. Still is.

    Go Google “all-time quarterback ratings” and read the common nonsense that stat tries to push.