Patrick Mahomes is three games into what we assume is his last season in Lubbock. Another year, another porous Tech defense. At least Mahomes has been Mahomes. His arm talent is second to none and he's in the perfect system. Let's take a look at his statistics so far in 2016.
Mahomes continues to be the poster child for video game numbers. Two of those games are against teams that could win their respective conference divisions. But when we look beyond the box score we see that Mahomes is even better.
When we look at the five areas of quarterback production that indicate both efficiency and explosiveness. Those areas are completion percentage, yards per attempt, interception rate, sack rate, and yards per play. If you're an efficient quarterback you're going to complete passes at above 60%, (that number or mean keeps rising) your going to be able to have a high yardage to attempt average and yardage per play average. Those last two stats both go directly to how prolific a quarterback is in moving his team downfield, regardless of system. Lastly you won't do two things that kill drives and get you beat i.e. get sacked and throw picks. We got this idea from the guru of college football advanced stats, the venerable Bill Connelly of SB Nation, Football Study Hall, et al. Read him.
We're visual learners so we like to reduce those numbers to radar or area graph and to do so we take all passers with 14 or more attempts per game and then assign a percentile ranking to each in each of the five previously discussed categories. The higher percentile, the more effect the quarterback.
For reference sake, here's UNT's true freshman quarterback Mason Fine's area graph.
Now this isn't fair, but it give you an idea of how hard it is to do what Mahomes does. Fine is young, talented and at times completely over his head. He'll get better, but it's just for comparison sake.
Here's Mahomes' area graph...
This is indicative of Mahomes career at Tech, he's an elite level passer. Here are the highlights:
- Mahomes leads all of college football in passing yards.
- Mahomes is second among all passers in yards per attempt at 11.3.
- He's in the 94th percentile in completion percentage at 71.2 %
- He leads all quarterbacks with 14 touchdown passes.
- Mahomes Ranks in the 98th percentile in yards per play.
- The one area where Mahomes is below average or really below elite is his sack rate at 43%.
As we've discussed before, sack rate isn't all on the quarterback or on the offensive line and for systems like Tech's often times the protection leaves a free rusher that the quarterback account for.
Other than sack rate, Mahomes is among the best if the not the best quarterbacks in college football. Mahomes elite arm talent keeps defensive coordinators up at night. Elite as in alien life form, forged by thunder and cured by lightening. Oh, and he unleash it from almost any angle at any time. Case in point.
That's a armgasm. Yes. We made that word up. Feel free to use.
Tech's defense may not allow Mahomes' to get the credit he really deserves, but the season is still young and hey, at least we know Tech will put up enough points to be in every game.