QBER/Week 5: Most Efficient Quarterback? Surprise, It's Hasselbeck

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QBER/Week 5: Most Efficient Quarterback? Surprise, It's Hasselbeck
(Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

(QBER is short for Quarterback Efficiency Rating, a more comprehensive and easily understood rating system that places the emphasis where it belongs—the ability of a quarterback to advance the ball, avoid negative plays, and score touchdowns in comparison to his peers. A rating of 100.0 is the league average.)

 

Any discussion of NFC darkhorses should begin with the team that has the most efficient quarterback through the first five weeks of the regular season.

 

Matt Hasselbeck and the Seattle Seahawks, of course.

 

After a two-week absence, Hasselbeck returned with a 259-yard, four-touchdown, no-turnover performance that vaulted him into the top spot in the QBER standings. The veteran leads Peyton Manning by percentage points.

 

In particular, Hasselbeck has displayed an uncanny ability to get his team to the end zone. He had accounted for seven touchdowns in 92 pass plays, the best rate of any quarterback, and slightly more than twice the league average. He also is well above the norm in the sack and turnover categories.

 

The Seahawks are off to a 2-3 start, but Hasselbeck sat out two of the losses because of a fractured rib. If their makeshift offensive line can keep him in one piece the rest of the way, they have to be taken seriously as a postseason threat.

 

The QBER leaders after Week Five of the regular season:

 

1. Hasselbeck 149.6

2. P. Manning 149.3

3. E. Manning 147.4

4. Ryan 147.1

5. Brees 144.5

6. Favre 138.3

7. Orton 135.5

8. Schaub 125.13

9. Rodgers 125.12

10. Cassel 118.9

11. Flacco 114.0

12. Rivers 110.6

13. Warner 107.3

14. Cutler 106.2

15. Roethlisberger 104.1

16. Hill 103.9

17. Romo 100.4

18. Garrard 96.2

19. Brady 96.0

20. Leftwich 86.6

21. Palmer 86.3

22. Wallace 85.6

23. Campbell 81.8

24. Collins 78.7

25. Kolb 77.9

26. Edwards 77.6

27. Johnson 71.0

28. Sanchez 65.9

29. Stafford 59.6

30. Russell 56.4

31. Boller 41.3

32. Delhomme 15.0

 


Some Observations

 

  • Did the Cleveland Browns make the right move to promote Derek Anderson to the starter role? It probably doesn’t matter. There’s virtually no difference between Anderson (43.7) and his successor Brady Quinn (38.8), who have committed the same number of turnovers (five) in the same number of pass plays (89).
  • Many observers believe it’s only a matter of time before the Tom Brady of old makes a comeback, but his rankings suggest otherwise. Where Brady ranked in QBER each week: 17th, 21st, 18th, 17th, and 19th.
  • Ben Roethlisberger ranks seventh in the NFL passer ratings, but he's a distant 15th on the QBER list. The difference? The NFL formula places importance on his league-high .738 completion percentage, which is largely the result of more screens and dump-offs this season. It doesn't dock him for two interceptions that were returned for touchdowns, an area that is included in the QBER system.
  • David Garrard had the most forgettable Week Five of all. Subtract 105 yards in turnovers and 26 more in sacks, and Garrard was left with a meager 58 yards in 36 pass plays.
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