Next time you are watching football and you see your favorite quarterback
throw a pass completion, think about the math used in connection with
completed pass. Math is used in professional football in every practice,
training camp, pre-season game, and regular season game. Without math
it would just be a game that uses pigskin.
Let's look at the completed pass and the math involved. The quarterback
is tracked by the percentage of completions attempted and made, along
with completion yards. The distance he threw the ball and which side
of the field he through the ball. In addition, to the completion percentage
based on taking the snap from under center or shotgun. These pigskin
numbers are all used to develop a mathematical model of the quarterback,
for statistical comparison with other quarterbacks.
The receiver who caught the pass is judged on the number of passes
thrown to him and the number of catches. He is also judged on the
number yards he gains after the catch and areas that he catches the
passes. Just like the quarterback these pigskin numbers are all used
to develop a mathematical model of the receiver, for statistical comparison
with other receivers.
Let's look at other math used in professional football. The team
who scores the most points wins, true. However the better team of
the field may not be the winning team, because luck does prevail in
football like other sports. Statistically a team can run all over
the other team and lose. For example:
- Team A: Passing Yards - 375, Rushing Yards - 135, Kick Off Return
Yards - 73, Quarterback Completion 22 of 35, Quarterback Rating
88.7, and Punt Return Yards 36.
- Team B: Passing Yards - 250, Rushing Yards - 99, Kick Off Return
Yards - 101, Quarterback Completion 17of 40, Quarterback Rating
56.5, and Punt Return Yards 22.
Team A is statistically better than Team B, however Team B won. One
statistic that is not shown is turnovers. Team A had 4 Turnovers and
lost 4; and Team B had no turnovers. Turnovers cost Team A the game.
When it comes to football math is everywhere. Let's take a look at
players and the math for football players. Now we have already talked
about the playing statistical model, but what about the player. The
statistical model of a player includes his height, weight, body measurements,
40 yard dash time, vertical reach height, how many times can he lift
a certain weight, how much weight can he lift, how fast can he run
an obstacle course, and more.
Before scouts and coaches ever look at or talk to a potential
player, they view the player's statistical model and the players playing
statistical model. If they like what they see in the numbers, then
they will actually talk to the player.
Professional football is more than moving the pigskin 100 yards to
score 6 points and then the point after kick for 1 point. Maybe the
team had to settle for a field goal from the 40 yard line to make
a 50 yard field goal for 3 points. Maybe they tried a 2 point conversation
after the touchdown. To achieve points a team has to move the pigskin
at least 10 yards within 4 downs to get another set of 4 downs. All
the time the play clock is ticking down from 25 seconds to 0 for the
quarterback to get the play off, if not then a 5 yard penalty.
This all has to be accomplished in 60 minutes of playing time divided
into 4 fifteen minute quarters, with 2 fifteen minute quarters in
each half. Oh yeah, each team has 3 time outs in each half that they
can use for 30 second timeouts. And then there are the 2 minute warnings
just before the end of each half. Whew, math is every where in football.