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From Matt To Dak: The Difference A Year Makes

Do you remember the 2010 Panthers? That was the last pre-Cam team in Carolina. That team wast not very good at passing, but got significantly better once Newton arrived. In 2010, Carolina averaged just 2.85 ANY/A, but that jumped to 6.29 the following year, for an increase of 3.43 ANY/A. Here’s the breakdown:

Games Passing
Rk Player Year
Age Draft Tm Lg G GS Cmp Att Cmp% Yds TD Int TD% Int% Rate Sk Yds Y/A AY/A ANY/A Y/G W L T
1 Cam Newton 2011 22 1-1 CAR NFL 16 16 310 517 59.96 4051 21 17 4.10 3.29 84.5 35 260 7.84 7.17 6.24 253.2 6 10 0
2 Armanti Edwards 2011 23 3-89 CAR NFL 16 0 1 1 100.00 11 0 0 0.00 0.00 112.5 0 0 11.00 11.00 11.00 0.7
3 Legedu Naanee 2011 28 5-172 CAR NFL 15 10 1 1 100.00 27 0 0 0.00 0.00 118.7 0 0 27.00 27.00 27.00 1.8
4 Jimmy Clausen 2010 23 2-48 CAR NFL 13 10 157 299 52.51 1558 3 9 1.00 3.01 58.4 33 223 5.21 4.06 2.98 119.8 1 9 0
5 Matt Moore 2010 26 CAR NFL 6 5 79 143 55.24 857 5 10 3.50 6.99 55.6 13 90 5.99 3.55 2.67 142.8 1 4 0
6 Brian St. Pierre 2010 31 5-163 CAR NFL 1 1 13 28 46.43 173 1 2 3.60 7.14 48.7 3 23 6.18 3.68 2.58 173.0 0 1 0
7 Tony Pike 2010 24 6-204 CAR NFL 1 0 6 12 50.00 47 0 0 0.00 0.00 60.1 1 10 3.92 3.92 2.85 47.0 0 0 0
8 Armanti Edwards 2010 22 3-89 CAR NFL 3 0 1 1 100.00 0 0 0 0.00 0.00 79.2 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.0 0 0 0
9 Brandon LaFell 2010 24 3-78 CAR NFL 14 2 0 1 0.00 0 0 0 0.00 0.00 39.6 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.0 0 0 0

What about the Tebow/Manning Broncos? They averaged 4.77 ANY/A, but that increased to 7.85 in Manning’s first year. That team set a record for the largest increase in completions from year to year, but it “only” saw its ANY/A jump by 3.07.

 
Games Passing
Rk Player Year
Age Draft Tm Lg G GS Cmp Att Cmp% Yds TD Int TD% Int% Rate Sk Yds Y/A AY/A ANY/A Y/G W L T
1 Peyton Manning 2012 36 1-1 DEN NFL 16 16 400 583 68.61 4659 37 11 6.30 1.89 105.8 21 137 7.99 8.41 7.89 291.2 13 3 0
2 Brock Osweiler 2012 22 2-57 DEN NFL 5 0 2 4 50.00 12 0 0 0.00 0.00 56.2 0 0 3.00 3.00 3.00 2.4 0 0 0
3 Matt Prater 2012 28 DEN NFL 16 0 0 1 0.00 0 0 0 0.00 0.00 39.6 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.0 0 0
4 Tim Tebow 2011 24 1-25 DEN NFL 14 11 126 271 46.49 1729 12 6 4.40 2.21 72.9 33 225 6.38 6.27 4.85 123.5 7 4 0
5 Kyle Orton 2011 29 4-106 DEN NFL 5 5 91 155 58.71 979 8 7 5.20 4.52 75.7 9 49 6.32 5.32 4.73 195.8 1 4 0
6 Britton Colquitt 2011 26 DEN NFL 16 0 0 1 0.00 0 0 0 0.00 0.00 39.6 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.0
7 Eric Decker 2011 24 3-87 DEN NFL 16 13 0 1 0.00 0 0 0 0.00 0.00 39.6 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.0
8 Demaryius Thomas 2011 24 1-22 DEN NFL 11 5 0 1 0.00 0 0 0 0.00 0.00 39.6 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.0

Along with Drew Brees coming to the Saints in ’06, and Tampa Bay in 2010 (going from year one to year two of the Josh Freeman era) those were the only times since 2000 that a team increased its ANY/A by at least 3.00 in a one-year span.

But the 2016 Cowboys are not poised to not only join that list, but leap to the top of it.

Query Results Table
Games Passing
Rk Player Year
Age Draft Tm Lg G GS Cmp Att Cmp% Yds TD Int TD% Int% Rate Sk Yds Y/A AY/A ANY/A Y/G W L T
1 Dak Prescott 2016 23 DAL NFL 10 10 214 316 67.72 2640 17 2 5.40 0.63 108.6 14 84 8.35 9.15 8.50 264.0 9 1 0
2 Cole Beasley 2016 27 DAL NFL 10 4 0 1 0.00 0 0 0 0.00 0.00 39.6 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.0
3 Mark Sanchez 2016 30 1-5 DAL NFL 1 0 1 1 100.00 8 0 0 0.00 0.00 100.0 0 0 8.00 8.00 8.00 8.0
4 Matt Cassel 2015 33 7-230 DAL NFL 9 7 119 204 58.33 1276 5 7 2.50 3.43 70.6 14 86 6.25 5.20 4.47 141.8 1 6 0
5 Tony Romo 2015 35 DAL NFL 4 4 83 121 68.60 884 5 7 4.10 5.79 79.4 6 35 7.31 5.53 4.99 221.0 3 1 0
6 Kellen Moore 2015 26 DAL NFL 3 2 61 104 58.65 779 4 6 3.80 5.77 71.0 5 23 7.49 5.66 5.19 259.7 0 2 0
7 Brandon Weeden 2015 32 1-22 DAL NFL 4 3 71 98 72.45 738 2 2 2.00 2.04 92.1 8 62 7.53 7.02 5.91 184.5 0 3 0
8 Darren McFadden 2015 28 1-4 DAL NFL 16 10 0 1 0.00 0 0 0 0.00 0.00 39.6 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.0

Prescott is enjoying one of the best rookie seasons ever, with an impressive 8.50 ANY/A average through ten games.  But what makes it even more remarkable is that last year, Dallas ranked dead last in ANY/A, compared to a third-place ranking (behind Atlanta and New England) this season.  The 2015 Cowboys averaged just 4.99 ANY/A, and right now, the 2016 Cowboys are at 8.48 ANY/A.  That would mean an increase of 3.49 ANY/A.

How impressive is that? Well, the additions of Kurt Warner and Marshall Faulk, and the pairing of Torry Holt with Isaac Bruce on the 1999 Rams, led to an increase of 3.85 ANY/A.  That’s the only larger jump since 1980.

The table below shows the top 50 year-over-year increases in offensive ANY/A:

RkTeamYearYr N-1 ANY/AYr N ANY/ADiff
30Denver Broncos20124.777.853.07
15Carolina Panthers20112.856.293.43
19Tampa Bay Buccaneers20103.646.893.25
37Miami Dolphins20084.257.192.94
50New England Patriots20076.048.772.73
28New Orleans Saints20064.317.393.08
49Philadelphia Eagles20064.837.582.75
38San Diego Chargers20044.677.592.93
7St. Louis Rams19994.178.023.85
22Buffalo Bills19983.436.593.16
43Denver Broncos19933.706.522.81
29Washington Redskins19915.258.333.08
48San Francisco 49ers19895.778.542.77
26Miami Dolphins19833.576.693.12
20Cincinnati Bengals19813.716.933.22
40Detroit Lions19802.795.692.90
6San Francisco 49ers19791.084.943.86
36New Orleans Saints19782.425.372.95
46Tampa Bay Buccaneers1978-0.062.742.80
31Oakland Raiders19764.027.083.06
42Cleveland Browns19762.245.082.85
13Baltimore Colts19752.375.873.50
32Los Angeles Rams19733.666.693.03
41New York Jets19723.196.062.88
44Minnesota Vikings19722.835.642.81
24New England Patriots19711.074.233.15
35San Francisco 49ers19704.647.602.96
45Cleveland Browns19684.176.972.80
17New York Giants19673.056.323.28
34Washington Redskins19622.465.462.99
12Chicago Bears19611.785.403.62
9Philadelphia Eagles19581.385.143.76
8Cleveland Browns19572.336.153.82
27Washington Redskins19572.735.813.08
4New York Giants19541.325.334.01
33Green Bay Packers19540.533.533.00
11Cleveland Browns19534.508.173.67
47Los Angeles Rams19533.566.342.77
23Green Bay Packers19510.293.453.16
16New York Yanks19502.085.363.28
18Los Angeles Rams19482.255.533.27
3Green Bay Packers19470.624.784.16
10Washington Redskins19473.727.423.69
1Pittsburgh Steelers1946-1.782.894.66
25Boston Yanks19461.094.233.14
39Chicago Cardinals19462.315.232.91
2Cleveland Rams19451.695.964.28
5Chicago Cardinals1945-1.662.313.97
14New York Giants19452.185.643.47
21Detroit Lions1944-0.632.583.21

So when you watch the Cowboys today, realize that Prescott isn’t just putting up insane numbers for a rookie: in this context, he’s putting up franchise-altering numbers.

  • Dak (and the Cowboys) averaged 8.40 ANY/A on Thanksgiving, which ever so barely drops the team’s season-long ANY/A to 8.47. That means the team has still increased its ANY/A by 3.48 ANY/A, which would still be the 2nd best since 1980.