Chat with KC Joyner
Joyner, aka The Football Scientist, uses game film to track, tabulate and analyze nearly every measurable statistic in an NFL game. He is a regular Insider contributor and has his own website at thefootballscientist.com.
Send your questions now and join KC in The Show on Thursday at 4 p.m. ET!
KC Joyner (4:00 PM)
Good afternoon! There's a great game tonight and some terrific matchups this weekend, so let's talk some football!
I hope you are willing to go back to the overrated article you wrote two weeks ago. I think it is crazy to say that Jay Cutler is overrated based on one stat. Did you take into account that four running backs have been put on IR? Or that he has a very bad defense backing him up? Or that his receivers lead the league in dropped passes, with at least four of those being touchdowns? Or that he has more fourth quarter passing yards and touchdowns than any other QB in the league? My guess is that no you didn't take any of those things into consideration. He is clearly one of the best QBs in the league. Denver would have a top five draft pick without Cutler. By the way in your last chat you basically said that Cutler got 447 yards and 3 TDs against the Browns, because he was playing the Browns. Well Monday night they picked Edwards 3 times, and they also had 3 against Eli Manning earlier this year.
KC Joyner (4:02 PM)
My whole point on Cutler was that he was being mentioned as one of the great QBs in the league and that he was too error prone to be listed there. As soon as he gets those errors in check (and by that I mean getting them down to 1 in 30 passes instead of 1 in 20), I'll be on board with touting him as a great QB.
The Bucs are coming off a physical game with the Vikings, and could be looking ahead to NO, @Car, @ATL, plus they aren't a great road team. Trap game at Detroit this week?
KC Joyner (4:03 PM)
I'd agree with you except that Detroit is easily the worst team in football. Their defense has zero strong points in the secondary and the team is also banged up. Tampa may not dominate to the level they are capable but they'll still win this one handily.
KC, I think it's JP time in Buffalo. What do you think?
KC Joyner (4:04 PM)
I figured this question would come up sooner or later. JP had rough spots like this so I'm all for letting Edwards work his way through them but if he can't do it, they've got to put Losman in there.
Josh (Knoxville, TN)
Newman is healthy, Jones will be back in a couple games, and the younger guys (Jenkins and Scandrick) are getting more experience. So does this mean we'll be seeing less of Anthony Henry? If so, that's good, right? Thanks.
KC Joyner (4:05 PM)
The only question is will Jones be coming back too late to help Dallas. It will only take another loss or two to really hurt the Boys playoff chances and with the way they've been playing, it could happen sooner rather than later.
KC, im in a tough spot. I need to pick 2 out of B-West, Jacobs, LJ, and D. Ward to start this week. What are your thoughts?
KC Joyner (4:06 PM)
That is a tough spot. It's good you have the NY handcuff in case Jacobs is out. You may end up having to start both of them if Westbrook can't play but I do have to say that the Cards/Giants game has trap written all over it.
KC, Fantasy Q: Which 2 RBs would you start this week: Portis, Dunn, or Forte? Thanks
KC Joyner (4:07 PM)
Dunn and Portis as long as they both play.
Peter - ATL
Doesn't look like many people agree with your assessment that Carolina's D will be a good play @ Atlanta. If Oakland and Detroit ran for 150+ each week over Carolina, what do you think Turner and Norwood will do?? Then Ryan picks apart the secondary concentrating on the run, am I wrong here?
KC Joyner (4:08 PM)
It's true Carolina gives up ground yardage but I'm expecting that they'll get a lead against an inconsistent Falcons secondary. Ryan is also going through a rough patch right now and the Panthers CBs both have great metrics.
Did you enjoy the 1.5 point victory last weekend over the Canadian? Now, I must break you all!
KC Joyner (4:09 PM)
I was hoping you'd show up this week! It took the MNF game to squeak out a win but it put me back in the playoffs at the moment. I hope to see you in the postseason!
John ( PHX,AZ)
Trap Game in AZ? You think, I think AZ at home is a pretty good bet regardless of who they play
KC Joyner (4:10 PM)
Very true about the Cards being that good. My concern for NY is that they have to travel across the country to play the game and have three straight divisional contests after this. That's why it looks like a trap.
Lance (Carbondale, IL)
Will the Steelers roll tonight or struggle offensively against Bengals?
KC Joyner (4:11 PM)
I think it will be touch and go for their offense but they'll make enough plays to win a 20-10 contest.
Yo KC - You helped to a fantasy championship last year and now I am struggling to get to the playoffs so I need to win this week. Better TE option in a non-PPR league - Olsen or Shockey? Leaning Shockey since I do not think the NO WR's will do much. Thoughts?
KC Joyner (4:12 PM)
I'm with you on Shockey. GBs CBs are playing great (2.8 YPA for Harris, 4.2 for Woodson) and NO will have to go elsewhere for their passes. Shockey will get his share so go with him.
hi KC, enjoyed your shout out to Lucas and Gamble in your latest article. How do they stand out vs other starting CB tandems?? I would imagine Titans, Steelers, and maybe Giants having better starters at CB. Anyone else?
KC Joyner (4:13 PM)
The aforementioned Packers CBs are about the only ones who are playing as well as Carolina's tandem. Corey Webster is doing great for the Giants but he's got the struggling Aaron Ross on the other side. Titans are doing well but not quite dominating.
Antonio Cromartie (SD)
KC can I blame me mostly poor performance this year on injuries or is there more to the story?
KC Joyner (4:14 PM)
I think it's injuries and a case of trying to make too many interceptions. Some teams have been able to take advantage of his overanxiousness to hit big plays.
KC, The Bills really need to get rid of Dick Jauron? The guy just stands there on the sidelines and shows no emotions! Pump your guys up instead of clapping your hands! And Discipline your players when they keep screwing up instead of just clapping your hands. I am disgusted!
KC Joyner (4:16 PM)
I'm not quite on the replace Jauron bandwagon. Yeah, he's not a fired up guy but neither was Bud Grant and he was one of the all-time best. I'll go back to the QB play and say although Edwards did well earlier this year, I just don't see him scaring defenses the way Losman did. You've got to go vertical and Losman does that better than Edwards.
KC, prepare to watch your boy Asumugha get toasted this weekend by my boy b-marsh and company. He will finally be exposed!
KC Joyner (4:17 PM)
Toby, I agree that Asomugha will be thrown at much more this weekend than he has all year but it will be a big test for Marshall. His history shows that he doesn't fare well against top-level competition so this could be a chance for him to correct that.
Jonathan ( pennsylvania)
KC who will start in place of Chad
KC Joyner (4:18 PM)
I haven't seen who the Bengals named as the starter in his place but since Antonio Chatman was placed on IR a couple of days ago, it would stand to reason that it would be Chris Henry.
steve (seattle, wa)
KC, Is there a college QB that can step in and make a difference the way Matt Ryan has stepped up this year?
KC Joyner (4:20 PM)
I've been doing tape breakdowns for six years now and Matt Ryan is easily the best rookie QB I've ever seen. It's a rare gift to be able to adjust to the NFL that quickly so the odds are slim that there is another QB out there like this.
Justin (Queens, NY)
Hey KC, I just read a report Ty Law will be stepping in the starting DB position oppostite Revis. How does a guy come off his couch and play 57 snaps and the next week get promoted to starter? Is N.Lowery & Co. THAT bad? or is Ty just THAT good?
KC Joyner (4:21 PM)
It's a case of Lowery not playing well. He has an 8+ YPA and has been targeted and beaten quite a lot of late. I'll bet it is more a case of fatigue than anything else, so don't look at this as long term knock on Lowery.
Roger (Costa Mesa)
KC, what kind of metrics are you showing for the Titans' CBs? Surely they must be in the top 5.
KC Joyner (4:22 PM)
They aren't quite top five but a 5.9 for Finnegan and 6.0 for Harper are both really, really good. I wasn't trying to knock them earlier but rather saying that the other CBs are probably playing a bit better.
As a Pats fan I'm outraged that Mayo could only muster 20 tackles against the Jets last week. The guy is so overrated! Don't all these pundits who have already given him DROY pay attention to the "metrics" on this kid? Geeesh.
KC Joyner (4:24 PM)
Ed, a few things. First, did you see Mayo in coverage? That's part of the reason Keller did so well. Second, Mayo has been doing better of late against the run, and that is probably due to the NE coaches working on getting his weaknesses corrected. Third, yeah he'll win the DROY but who is he competing against for that? There are very few candidates so I wouldn't call that a slam-dunk "this guy is great" award.
I know the NFL won't adopt College Footballs overtime system, but what about their instant Replay system? It would be much better than what they are propposing with the 2nd look format, and the booth system would have much better angles than what the Refs have on the field!
KC Joyner (4:26 PM)
I think the NFL's concern with replay is always going to be the amount of time it takes. I don't have numbers on this but my gut instinct is that the college replays take longer than the pros. If that is the case, don't expect the NFL to make a change.
What do you think of the Bears Corey Graham? Is he able to be a quality starter at CB?
KC Joyner (4:27 PM)
My scouting eye says Graham is a coverage liability. The metrics say he is an 8.1 YPA CB and is therefore slightly below average. I'll put it this way - he's better than Ricky Manning, Jr.
Good Day KC, Which one sits of these 3-Breaston Bradley or Curtis? Is D. ward a good pickup as a backup rb-I would have to dump one of those wrs. Will the Ravens keep the points down against Philly or is Carolina a better play? Thanks for all your hard work.
KC Joyner (4:29 PM)
Good day! You're probably best off sitting Bradley because of his injury status. I really like D Ward as a backup and might consider dropping Bradley to pick him up. Carolina is a great play at D.
What was your opinion about the Buffalo Bills last 3 run plays(up the gut) before they tried to kick a 47 yd FG in the wind on MNF vs Cleveland?
KC Joyner (4:30 PM)
It would be the Jauron quandary in a nutshell. It gave them a chance to win but was also far too conservative to do much more than go 9-7.
Are there any other basic rules that I don't know?
KC Joyner (4:31 PM)
What amazed me about this is that McNabb said there were OTs during his college days. That's true for his sophomore-senior seasons but in his redshirt and freshman year the old tie rules were in place. In other words, he was around when the NCAA implemented the huge overtime rule change.
Joe (Essex, VT)
KC, I know your a big fan of Antoine Winfield - will Matt Jones be able any success matched up against him?
KC Joyner (4:32 PM)
Antoine is probably the best CB in the NFL right now. I'd take him against the best of the best and as good as Jones has been playing of late, I don't think he'll be able to overcome Winfield's coverage.
I know fans are idiots, but I was shocked that Tanard Jackson wasn't among the top five vote getters in the NFC. What a joke. You could make an argument for Landry or Collins, but TJack is the best overall FS.
KC Joyner (4:33 PM)
Mac, I wouldn't say it was a matter of idiocy as much as it is that Jackson has yet to get a lot of national coverage. Let TB make a playoff run and that will certainly change (as well as people like you and me touting him in a forum like this!).
KC, how has Dwight Freeney graded out this year? I know the d-line has taken a lot of heat but it seems to me like D Free has played quite well this year even though it may not reflect in his stats (of course it's hard to be dominant when you're seemingly being held on every play, but that's another topic). Thanks!
KC Joyner (4:35 PM)
I haven't run the entire season's worth of pass rush metrics for Indianapolis but I do know that Freeney is back to being his old dominant self. I even had him getting to the QB in just under two seconds in a game I graded this week. Getting there in three is an accomplishment and he did it in two.
Mac, apparently the NFC South kind of gets lost in Pro Bowl voting. Only Drew Brees would make it if they went with current voting...
KC Joyner (4:36 PM)
Good point, Adam. The entire division does seem to suffer from a lack of attention. Matt Ryan will help some of that and having one of their teams advance to the divisional round this year certainly wouldn't hurt.
I sure wish the Vikings had drafted Thigpen when they had the chance. Oh yeah, that's right, they did. And then Chilly thought he would be smarter than everyone else(like he always does) and sneak him thru waivers.
KC Joyner (4:37 PM)
Zac, you are sounding a bit like Williamson!
Can you talk me out of betting heavily for the Jets this week?
KC Joyner (4:38 PM)
Do you really trust your money in the hands of Brett Favre against the Titans D? Sounds like you should be buying GM stock on the side.
The only difference is that I CAN catch a football!
KC Joyner (4:39 PM)
Andre Goodman/Will Allen seem to be doing a much better job in coverage then they were at the beginning of the season. You have any updated metrics? I know they were terrible earlier in the season.
KC Joyner (4:40 PM)
Their season long numbers still aren't that great but Allen and Goodman have both played much better of late, especially Allen. He looks like he is back to his dominant 2007 level or at least very close to it.
Jason (Calgary, AB)
Mr Joyner. It's been painful to watch Philly struggle in short yardage situations. Do your metrics provide any insight? How much of an impact do you think it's been not having Shawn Andrews in the lineup?
KC Joyner (4:41 PM)
In the tape grading I've done so far on Philly, their O linemen are in the high 70s/low 80s in POA win percentage. They go for the big linemen who can pass block, so it's not a big surprise they struggle in run blocking despite having a lot of mass. It's hard to find someone who can do both and as long as Andy Reid is head coach, the pass blocking will come first, so don't look for the short yardage issues to change soon.
I know there are no metrics to evaluate this question but I was wondering about your opinion as to why Devin Hester has been mediocre at best at kick/punt returns this year.
KC Joyner (4:43 PM)
Injuries would be one issue. Another is that special teams coaches are starting to figure out how to defend him better. I talked with an ST coach who said that Hester can be held in check if the return teams keep their lanes. Chicago does some things on ST to get defenders out of their lanes but they may have run out of new tricks in that area.
You've been a Childress apologist over the years, so is there any chance you will in on the brawl with Troy I will fight you with two hands behind my back Williamson? Just kidding, you have been pretty straight up on the Chili Man.
KC Joyner (4:45 PM)
I've actually been on both sides of the Childress issue. In Scientific Football 2007 I said his lack of leadership was costing the team. In SF 2008, I said he devoted himself to the leadership side of the ledger and seemed to have solved the problem. I think he's done about as well with this team as could be expected given the QB situation but he's got find that solution in the next year or so or this potentially dominant team will continue to be an 8-8/9-7 squad.
M (McLean, Virginia)
Does Carlos Rogers have good metrics this season?
KC Joyner (4:46 PM)
The best of his career - 5.9 YPA, 56.3% success rate.
Coming into the season, did you expect Baltimore Ravens QB Joe Flacco, to be this good?
KC Joyner (4:48 PM)
I can't say that I did but I'll caveat that by saying he's had as many games where he looks like a rookie as he has really looked good. I'm also waiting to see how he handles a really hard hit. I'm not saying he couldn't take it but I have yet to see him get snotbubbled and get up to go after the defense after it.
Fred Bennett (HOU)
What happened to me this year? I was one of the best last season.
KC Joyner (4:48 PM)
Sophomore jinx. A lot of CBs have had great first years and bad second years (Terence Newman comes to mind) but they often turn it around long term. I wouldn't give up on Fred just yet.
KC, before the season began you said Eric Winston was average. How have his metrics been? He's given up 4.5 sacks, but they pass alot, and a couple of those were coverage sacks. He seems to be run blocking better this year also.
KC Joyner (4:50 PM)
I'm glad you asked because I've had a chance to go over some of his run metrics the past couple of weeks. I didn't run the entire set of numbers but I know he's in the upper 80s, and maybe low 90s, in POA wins in the games I broke down. His pass blocking is acceptable and when that is added to really good run blocking, I'd say he is at least in the upper half at his position.
Ronde Barber (Tampa)
KC- I read your column saying I was overrated and I must say I agree with your assessment. The only question is why hasn't rookie Aqib Talib(Who looks better and better each week.) ousted me from my starting position yet?
KC Joyner (4:50 PM)
Probably because he's a rookie and the Bucs don't like to lean on rookies any more than they have to.
KC, why don't they put you on TV more? You certainly have a unique angle that many of the other analysts don't have. Keep up the good work.
KC Joyner (4:51 PM)
Nate, I do so much writing and tape watching that I barely have time to pursue anything else!
What do you think of my successor, Jared Gaither? I think he, Grubbs, and Brown will all be pro-bowlers next year.
KC Joyner (4:53 PM)
I've only reviewed a couple of Ravens games but I'm fairly impressed with Gaither so far. I'll get in more tapes during the early offseason so check back with me then and I'll let you know if I'm of the same mindset.
Josh (Knoxville, TN)
What is the rationale behind the eligibility rules? It's illegal to pass to a lineman or to have a lineman downfield during a pass, but why? No one wants to throw to a lineman in the first place. And if a lineman is downfield it probably means the QB is under heavy pressure anyway. Neither situation seems like something that benefits the offense and therefore needs to be penalized. What am I missing?
KC Joyner (4:54 PM)
It all goes back to the early days of football. In a nutshell, they decided to keep a certain number of people at the line to prevent a mass of 11 people getting a running start at the defense. It was called the flying wedge and actually killed people so it had to be outlawed and thus the line of scrimmage was born.
And to think, I used to respect your opinion. Chilly does not manage the clock well, punts when he shouldn't, has failed with whomever is at QB, turned what should be a great Oline into not much/average, seriously. What has he done well?
KC Joyner (4:55 PM)
Shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll send you an electronic copy of the articles. You'll still respect my opinion after you see those!
Ryan (Boston, MA)
Matt Ryan the best rookie qb you've ever seen? What about Big Ben going 14-0 his rookie year?
KC Joyner (4:56 PM)
I'll still take Ryan's season. Ben had a great group of talent around him and a stable organization. Ryan took over for a team that had huge issues last year and did a housecleaning.
It seemed like a decade past without any good LTs being drafted. Now the position is stacked. JT, Long, Clady, Gaither, Albert, soon to be Andre Smith. Do you remember a time with more talent?
KC Joyner (4:58 PM)
What's amazing is that they all panned out so quickly as young players. Thomas was a Pro Bowler his first year and both Long and Clady would be deserving of that choice this year.
dale pgh pa
KC, Holmes tonight or wait and go with Edwards,Evans,S.Moss on sunday. We play 3 wrs...
KC Joyner (4:59 PM)
I wait and play the other three. Evans and Moss both have really good matchups and I think Edwards will do well despite Quinn's finger injury.
Do you think Josh McDaniels will get a headcoaching gig next season? And maybe bring Matt Cassell with him?
KC Joyner (5:00 PM)
I'm going to throw something a bit crazy out there that is complete speculation and has no basis from inside information. What if McDaniels sticks around and takes over for Belichick if/when he leaves? That's a prime HC position and would be worth waiting for.
Don't listen to him, Dale! He loves Lee Evans!
KC Joyner (5:01 PM)
That is true but this is the year Evans panned out for fantasy owners (or at least he's doing so on a more consistent basis than he did in years past).
KC, Us Bills fans have a petition to have Dick Jauron fired! We wont stop till he is out!
KC Joyner (5:03 PM)
Do you not remember the Gregg Williams days? Jauron ain't that bad and there is a chance he turns things around the rest of this year. Give the guy at least four more games of support before hanging him out to dry!
KC, I admit that I don't follow your system closely. Do you account for a player's attitude in your stats? For instance, with Ocho Cinco getting suspended this week does that affect his rating?
KC Joyner (5:05 PM)
Attitude is one of those things like leadership and heart and character. They are all important but are only valuable if they show up in the player's performance. In Johnson's case there is an idea that his attitude is not quite what everyone would like it to be (I'm being a bit PC here). Since his numbers are down, it would lend credence to one possibly causing the other, but I'd want to take an even closer look at the metrics and tape before I signed off on that.
Eric (Sioux City)
Have you ever considered having penalties commited as a detraction from a player's metrics. eg. Flozell Adams.
KC Joyner (5:07 PM)
I actually do subtract the penalty yards from a player's totals in both the run and pass YPA totals. If they cost their teams yards, it should show up in their overall grade. Well, my eldest son wants to spend some time playing Civilization so I've got to run. I hope to see you all next week!