A new way to evaluate passers?

Tom Brady leads all quarterbacks, and rightfully so; but where does Cam Newton stack up? (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

We have already had the traditional passer rating for years, and this season we met ESPN's brainchild the 'Total QBR'. While I like the idea of ESPN's QBR and the way it takes into account rushing attempts, and crunch time situations the main problem is that as fans it's impossible to evaluate or understand the process by which a player is given a number. The system is fraught with subjectivity based on what is 'clutch', what is 'yards vs. expected' etc. 

Today a friend of mine presented me with a system he uses, which we'll call the 'CQE' and after spending a lot of time evaluating players with his metric I have found it to be an absolutely brilliant way to distill a QBs passing ability into three basic areas, but still be nuanced enough to stratify player ratings. The formula is this: 

YPA + (TD% / 8) - (INT% / 4) = CQE

Basically what this does it look at three basic areas, the yards per attempt (which most of you know I'm already a huge fan) coupled with the TD and INT rates per attempt. It's shocking to see how this system stacks up fairly closely with traditional QB ratings, except for a few changes. It's important to note before I give you the rankings to understand the guy who invented this system isn't a Panthers' fan, he's a Cowboys fan- so when it comes to Cam Newton he doesn't have a dog in the proverbial fight.

I'll give you the ratings after the jump...

The way this system is set up it has no ceiling. The traditional QB rating caps out at 158.3 while ESPN's model caps out at 100. Theoretically the CQE could last forever, but realistically nobody is going to pass for 100 yards per attempt for example.

 

The List

Here is the ratings of QBs through two weeks using the CQE, and in parentheses I have their current, standard QB rating: 

Tom Brady, QB NE 11.39 (128.0)
Aaron Rodgers, QB GB 10.50 (126.4)
Tony Romo, QB DAL 10.32 (108.8)
Kevin Kolb, QB ARI 10.26 (110.3)
Cam Newton, QB CAR 9.54 (89.1)
Drew Brees, QB NO 8.88 (114.9)
Matthew Stafford, QB DET 8.84 (112.0)
Matt Schaub, QB HOU 8.25 (100.4)
Andy Dalton, QB CIN 8.04 (105.7)
Jason Campbell, QB OAK 8.01 (99.7)
Matt Hasselbeck, QB TEN 8.01 (94.2)
Rex Grossman, QB WSH 7.74 (90.6)
Michael Vick, QB PHI 7.57 (93.0)
Philip Rivers, QB SD 7.53 (90.8)
Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB BUF 7.53 (109.6)
Ben Roethlisberger, QB PIT 7.44 (79.4)
Jay Cutler, QB CHI 7.38 (84.1)
Eli Manning, QB NYG 7.26 (80.5)
Chad Henne, QB MIA 7.26 (79.4)
Mark Sanchez, QB NYJ 7.24 (87.7)
Kyle Orton, QB DEN 7.20 (85.4)
Sam Bradford, QB STL 6.99 (77.7)
Joe Flacco, QB BAL 6.90 (82.8)
Alex Smith, QB SF 6.89 (95.2)
Matt Ryan, QB ATL 6.52 (85.1)
Josh Freeman, QB TB 6.45 (84.4)
Colt McCoy, QB CLE 6.06 (82.2)
Donovan McNabb, QB MIN 5.66 (71.2)
Kerry Collins, QB IND 5.62 (71.4)
Tarvaris Jackson, QB SEA 5.39 (80.1)
Luke McCown, QB JAC 3.12 (30.6)
Matt Cassel, QB KC 2.84 (50.4)

 

What I really love about this metric is how it seems to fairly evaluate all QBs regardless of system. Completion percentage isn't overvalued, and while TDs are important a QB who moves the ball excellently, only to have his team call run plays in the redzone is rewarded. It also penalizes INTs more harshly than traditional QB ratings which adequately punishes QBs for causing costly interceptions.

Since we have such a knowledgeable fan base I thought I would run this system by you. Do you see any glaring holes in this system in terms of being able to purely evaluate QBs from a passing perspective? Sound off in the comments. 

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