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Have you taken a look at a passing leaderboard lately? Here’s the PFR passing leaderboard sorted by ANY/A; as always, all columns are sortable.

1Peyton ManningDEN615422767.81808146.241.888.411.710637.47.84.2
2Josh FreemanTAM610418755.61538115.952.
3Eli ManningNYG716926563.82109124.572.687.712.55407.77.41.9
4Robert Griffin IIIWAS713318970.4160173.731.68.58.512151067.37.47.4
5Drew BreesNOR616627360.82097186.672.67.77.812.612867.17.24.2
6Ben RoethlisbergerPIT6155235661765114.731.37.57.911.413726.87.25.2
7Tom BradyNWE718628565.32104124.
8Aaron RodgersGNB718326269.81979197.341.57.68.310.8261426.47.19
9Matt SchaubHOU714022263.11650104.541.87.47.511.88596.973.5
10Jake LockerTEN46710663.278143.821.97.47.311.731676.92.8
11Matt RyanATL616023667.81756145.962.57.47.511131076.66.75.2
12Carson PalmerOAK614824161.4173272.941.77.2711.712936.56.34.7
13Alex SmithSFO712719066.8142794.752.67.57.311.2181006.46.28.7
14Joe FlaccoBAL715025259.5183793.662.47.36.912.2181106.46.16.7
15Andy DaltonCIN715624364.21831135.3104.17.56.811.7171026.75.96.5
16Cam NewtonCAR610117358.4138752.963.58713.7151026.85.98
17Tony RomoDAL615022167.9163683.694.17.46.310.99596.95.83.9
18Ryan FitzpatrickBUF7133218611435156.994.
19Christian PonderMIN71522276714929462.
20Sam BradfordSTL713121959.8159273.
21Ryan TannehillMIA611819859.6145442637.36.412.3121096.45.55.7
22Matthew StaffordDET616426462.1175451.962.36.6610.7128665.44.3
23Michael VickPHI613623158.9163283.583.57.16.21217906.25.46.9
24Andrew LuckIND613425053.6167472.872.86.7612.516995.95.36
25Mark SanchezNYJ711621853.2145394.173.26.7612.514775.95.36
26Jay CutlerCHI610618756.7135984.373.77.36.412.81912165.39.2
27Russell WilsonSEA710417559.4123084.67476.111.8149765.27.4
28Brandon WeedenCLE715427256.6178393.3103.76.65.611.611696.15.13.9
29Philip RiversSDG613920966.51492104.894.
30Kevin KolbARI610918359.6116984.431.66.46.510.7271594.84.912.9
31Matt HasselbeckTEN59615661.593153.242.665.59.710745.24.76
32Blaine GabbertJAX68815855.790663.831.95.75.610.3151054.64.58.7
33Matt CasselKAN510317658.5115052.895.16.54.811.213745.74.16.9

Among qualified quarterbacks, Josh Freeman is second in Adjusted Net Yards per Attempt, Net Yards per Attempt, and Yards per Attempt (behind a different passer in each category). He’s first by a mile in yards per completion — Cam Newton is the only other quarterback within 2 yards — but he’s third from last in completion percentage. To be sure, the 95-yard completion the Vincent Jackson helped, but he’d rank in first yards per completion even if that pass was never thrown. Additionally, despite the deep throwing and the low completion percentage, he’s actually sporting an above-average interception rate (POPIP potential regression alert!).

According to Pro-Football-Reference.com’s Player Season Finder, there’s only one quarterback who has been so far above average in yards per attempt, while being so far below average in completion percentage, and above average in interception rate — all era adjusted, of course — New England’s Steve Grogan in 1979. If we relax the criteria a little bit, we bring in Donovan McNabb, Mike Tomczak, Jay Schroeder, and Doug Williams, along with a few others. In 1978, New England set the still-standing team record for rushing yards in a season; the next year, Grogan’s response was apparently throw it deep whenever he got the chance.

According to Advanced NFL Stats, Josh Freeman is tied for the lead league with Eli Manning in Air Yards per pass Attempt this season. That may not be that surprising: Tampa Bay’s offensive coordinator is Mike Sullivan, who had been a position coach with the Giants for the past 8 years, working with the quarterbacks and wide receivers.

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