By Aaron Schatz
Special to Page 2

Note: Go to the bottom of the table for a more complete explanation of how Aaron's QB rating system works.

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    Quarterback Skinny DPAR
    1. Daunte Culpepper
    36/50, 396 yards
    5 TDs, 0 INTs
    Double-digit DPAR in every game this season. Passes Peyton Manning for the lead in total value for the year, 53.0 to 52.1, despite playing only four games. 16.2
    2. Tim Rattay
    38/57, 417 yards
    2 TDs, 0 INTs
    Set a Niners record for most complete passes in a game -- an impressive feat considering San Fran's history at QB. 13.7
    3. David Carr
    27/43, 372 yards
    3 TDs, 0 INTs
    A good example of how the opponent adjustments work (see below). Before adjustments, Carr and Culpepper were tied for No. 1, but since Minnesota has the worst pass defense in the league, Carr ends up with a lesser value. 11.8
    4. Drew Brees
    16/20, 206 yards
    3 TDs, 0 INTs
    That $50 I put on San Diego over 4.5 wins is looking pretty good right now. 9.8
    5. Ben Roethlisberger
    16/21, 231 yards
    1 TD, 1 INT
    Tommy Maddox, renew your insurance sales license. Fantasy alert: In each game that Big Ben has played, the percentage of passes intended for Plaxico Burress has increased, and so has Burress' yardage. 8.0
    6. Peyton Manning
    16/26, 198 yards
    3 TDs, 1 INT
    Is Marvin Harrison losing his role as Manning's go-to receiver? Manning is now passing more often to Wayne or Stokley, especially on third down. 7.4
    7. Drew Bledsoe
    16/29, 197 yards
    2 TDs, 1 INT
    Once a game, the offensive line can keep him upright long enough to chuck it downfield to Lee Evans for a big gain. If he had the chance to do this twice a game, Buffalo might actually win. 7.3
    8. Jeff Garcia
    16/34, 210 yards
    1 TD, 0 INTs
    Why completion percentage doesn't mean much: completed four passes on third or fourth down that were short of needed yardage. 6.8
    9. Jake Delhomme
    13/20, 173 yards
    1 TD, 0 INTs
    Ironically, Delhomme is playing much better than last season, but the Panthers have gone from getting all the breaks to getting none of them. 5.4
    10. Josh McCown
    19/34, 241 yards
    3 TDs, 1 INT
    He's actually been pretty good, except the Patriots game. You now have the answer to the question, "What do Josh McCown and Peyton Manning have in common?" 4.9
    11. Brian Griese
    16/19, 194 yards
    1 TD, 0 INTs
    Good reads, good rhythm, delivered the ball on time and to the right receivers. Fluke or Tampa's answer at quarterback? 4.8
    12. Marc Bulger
    24/42, 325 yards
    3 TDs, 3 INTs
    An astonishing comeback against what was the league's top-ranked defense. Zero yards passing and an interception in the first quarter left Rams fans calling for Kurt Warner. Biggest Seattle implosion since the Kingdome. 4.7
    13. Chad Pennington
    31/42, 304 yards
    1 TD, 1 INT
    Throws more dump-off passes than most people realize: 13 passes to running backs on Sunday. 4.7
    14. Kurt Warner
    18/33, 217 yards
    1 TD, 0 INTs
    Is it too early to play "Where will Warner play in 2005?" I nominate the Cowboys. 3.5
    15. Matt Hasselbeck
    20/35, 216 yards
    2 TDs, 0 INTs
    Koren Robinson dropped three more passes, including one where he had a clear shot at the end zone. As my friend Michael David Smith says: "Show me a wide receiver who's a good athlete with bad hands and I'll show you someone who picked the wrong sport." 3.1
    16. Byron Leftwich
    36/54, 357 yards
    1 TD, 2 INTs
    His 213 yards in the fourth quarter was more than what Bulger or Rattay accumulated in their big comebacks. But a comeback takes more than just lots of yards. 2.4
    17. Tom Brady
    7/19, 76 yards
    2 TDs, 1 INT
    A strange second half: Brady had no complete passes and only four attempts as the Patriots ran out the clock with their backup running backs. 1.7
    18. Joey Harrington
    16/24, 146 yards
    1 TD, 0 INTs
    If Roy Williams misses any time with that sprained ankle, Harrington's in trouble. 1.3
    19. Vinny Testaverde
    15/24, 126 yards
    1 TD, 1 INT
    Managed a paltry 8.4 yards per completion. Did Dallas suddenly switch to the "West Coast Offense" without telling anyone? 0.8
    20. Aaron Brooks
    11/23, 106 yards
    2 TDs, 1 INT
    Instead of his usual "strong stats that don't result in win," Brooks tried something new: "Weak stats that don't result in win." 0.6
    21. Jake Plummer
    17/29, 226 yards
    2 TDs, 2 INTs
    The fact that Denver's defense is better than Kansas City's defense is the only difference between his interception at the goal line and the one Trent Green threw against Houston two weeks ago. 0.0
    22. Jay Fiedler
    20/41, 251 yards
    1 TD, 1 INT
    Next week's quarterback: Kick returner/fill-in place kicker Wes Welker. -0.9
    23. Mark Brunell
    13/29, 83 yards
    1 TD, 1 INT
    Did he throw any passes from the pocket? Seemed like he was rolling out on every play, with passes coming up shorter than Nelson de la Rosa. -5.9
    24. Michael Vick
    18/29, 196 yards
    0 TDs, 1 INT
    Converted only 2 of 12 third down opportunities, with four sacks and three fumbles. Yes, he makes some spectacular plays, and, yes, Atlanta is 4-1, but Vick is below replacement level for the season. Are the Falcons winning because of Vick, or in spite of him? -6.9
    25. Kerry Collins
    28/44, 245 yards
    1 TD, 3 INTs
    "Don't even attempt a pass to Jerry Rice" turns out not to be a winning formula for Raiders. -9.8
    26. Kyle Boller
    9/18, 81 yards
    0 TDs, 3 INTs
    As it is in Miami, it's hard to know how much of this is Boller's fault and how much of the blame is on the offensive line, which can run block, but in two straight prime-time games haven't been able to pass block in the slightest. -10.8

    How DPAR (Defense-adjusted Points Above Replacement) works

    The success of each play is judged based on yardage gained towards both a touchdown and a first down. Then each play gets compared to the NFL average on similar plays, based on down, distance, and other variables. Quarterbacks are judged not based on how many yards they get, but on how important those yards are in the context of the game.

    Ratings are also adjusted for the quality of the opposing defense. The quarterback's performance is then translated into an approximate number of actual points that such success (or failure) is worth when compared to a "replacement level" quarterback (defined as any quarterback named "Billy Joe").

    When all offensive, defensive, and special teams plays are added together for one team, the result comes very close to the actual difference between points scored and allowed.

    Among the advantages of this system:

    1. Gives value for first downs, which are not really included in any other QB rating system but are hugely important.

    2. Does not punish quarterbacks who are always in bad field position because of a poor defense, nor does it punish quarterbacks who are always stuck in third-and-long because of a poor running game.

    3. With enough data to begin including defensive adjustment, quarterbacks receive bonuses when they play well against good defenses, and they don't get rated as world-beaters when they shred the 49ers

    4. Includes both passing and rushing plays, which obviously helps a QB like Michael Vick.

    5. DPAR punishes quarterbacks for turnovers but also for fumbles that his own team recovers. Different kind of fumbles have different penalties depending on how often defense recovers for a turnover. Sacks are punished as well.

    6. 5-yard scramble on 3rd-and-10? Worthless!

    7. Actual points! Easy to understand!

    An even longer explanation of these numbers can be found here.

    Aaron Schatz is editor-in-chief of

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