View Full Version : Ben Roethlisberger vs. the Field

08-30-2011, 07:50 AM
Ben Roethlisberger vs. the Field: How Big Ben's First Seven NFL Seaons Stack Up Against Other Great NFL Quarterbacks

http://cdn3.sbnation.com/profile_images/22908/BillCowher_tiny.jpg by WolfpackSteelersFan (http://www.sbnation.com/users/WolfpackSteelersFan) on Aug 29, 2011 8:16 PM EDT (http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2011/8/29/2367356/how-big-ben-stacks-up-seven-years-in)

As some of you may remember, I've enjoyed contributing a statistical post to BTSC every now and then. There are a couple of my posts still linked at the left side of the main page, comparing the numbers of the some of the top RBs, WRs, and QBs in NFL history. I also posted an article comparing Big Ben to Eli Manning (http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2009/7/16/951981/a-closer-comparison-of-ben) several years ago while I was between jobs and free to do more research and writing than usual.

After a long hiatus since then, I thought it might be a good time to look back at Roethlisberger's statistics through seven NFL seasons, and then compare his numbers with other QBs, both retired and active, who have started a sizable number of games like Roethlisberger has since 2004.

I pulled my data from Pro-Football-Reference.com (http://www.pro-football-reference.com/). Using their Player Season Finder, I ran a query on all QBs that had 16,000 or more passing yards in their first seven NFL seasons (http://pfref.com/tiny/00Tje). That would, of course, include some of the all time greats, but it also includes some of the "Hall of Very Good," as well as some "just ok" QBs. But, my goal here was not another comparison of all time greats. I just wanted to see how Ben stacked up against a fairly large sample size. I set the bar at 16,000 passing yards in order to include Tony Romo (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/3435/tony-romo), because he is one of the QBs in my mind that has been one of Ben's contemporaries, a la Eli and Philip Rivers (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/3028/philip-rivers). I also thought about Aaron Rodgers (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/1977/aaron-rodgers), but he's only started three seasons, so I would have had to drop the bar to 12,000 career passing yards. I just thought that would open it up too much.

While this analysis is not exactly the same as the ones that I mentioned above, I followed the same general process. I looked at variety of statistics that were provided by the PFR query, then ranked the players in each category and took the average of each player's rankings. I used the average rankings to determine an overall aggregate ranking for all of the players. For more information the process, I recommend taking a look at one of the posts that I mentioned above (they are under the Statistical Comparisons section).

With that brief intro, let's take a look at the numbers. First, we have the raw statistics from PFR, broken down into two separate tables. Each row of data is sortable.

Tables and more here...http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2011/8/29/2367356/how-big-ben-stacks-up-seven-years-in

08-30-2011, 09:02 AM
when all of the young money WRs become true NFL WRs then the sky is the limit for Ben.