The Green Bay Packers and the Alex Green Effect

Alex Green continues to be an intriguing running back for NFL Data Consultants due to his analytical profile.  Remember, one of our key objectives is to measure and predict the careers of players as they enter the NFL.  Unfortunately, Alex Green has been battling a knee injury that he suffered in his rookie year.  It is one that typically takes 2 years to fully heal.

In 2012, a picture of how a potentially healthy Alex Green would project became available since he was the comparable for RB Bryce Brown of the Philadelphia Eagles.  Bryce Brown averaged a very good 4.9 yards per carry on 115 rush attempts, and Alex Green is on the plus side of the comparison between the two.  Even the qualitative measures for Alex Green are more favorable to that of Bryce Brown.

At Hawaii, Alex Green played in a very pass happy offense and still possessed a very strong analytical profile as a runner.  If healthy, Green is the best fit for an Aaron Rodgers offense predicated on the passing game and spreading out the defense.  They did draft Eddie Lacy and Johnathan Franklin, but Lacy brings a different element and a healthy Green is a superior prospect to Franklin based on both the analytical profile and the comparisons.

At NFL Data Consultants, we take a holistic approach with comparative analysis because all elements are combined into a single framework.  NFL Data Consultants will be releasing a daily series on June 17 that will highlight the best decision each organization made with the 2013 draft and undrafted rookie signings.  The key is to feature one player from each organization that had a better analytical profile for success than the player’s market value (draft position) indicated.  The objective is to finish all 32 NFL Teams before the start of training camp when the pads go on.

Running Backs And Speed Score: Knile Davis and Some Coffee

Football Outsiders created a metric called speed score that measures a speed to weight ratio and has typically been used to gauge potential for RBs.  Unlike the Flying 20 metric mentioned previously, the Speed Score metric for running backs has a higher correlation of success than many of the provided metrics.  It is not full proof though.  There are RBs that score lower than the league average and have a good deal of success and there are those that have high speed scores that do not have success.  There is always more to the story…

So when Knile Davis had a speed score of 124.49, one of the better speed scores ever recorded, it requires a deeper look.  Here is a running back that ran for 1,322 yards and 13 TDs  with a 6.5 yards per carry as a sophomore before running for 377 yards, 2 TDs, and a 3.4 yards per carry as a junior.  On the surface, one might see a Jekyll and Hyde situation.  Interviews aren’t going to tell you which way he leans as a player.  Interviews provide the means to information needed for qualitative analysis within the structure of building a team.

There is a systematic way to evaluate talent.

1)  Can they play? If you think this question can be determined with film alone, then it would be advisable to take a look at some of the past drafts.

2) If they can play, then that is where the qualitative factor comes into play from an organizational fit.  The best character in the world is irrelevant if the first standard is not met.

At NFL Data Consultants, I will not just take into account one metric or one season or one combine.  The purpose is to look below the surface and determine what the answer to #1 really is.  With what is known about Knile Davis to this point between his on field and athletic testing performance, he compares very closely to two backs in particular.  The number of factors in play leads to a high degree of confidence as to where his probability of long term success truly sits.  It is the benefit of using analytics, technology, and the outside the box analysis that NFL Data Consultants provides.