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3-4 DE's, by the #'s
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Waldo


Joined: 29 Nov 2006
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Location: The ATL
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 12:48 am    Post subject: 3-4 DE's, by the #'s Reply with quote

Round 2 of my numbers study, defensive ends.

I found that there is good data for the '04 draft, so my database has been fully updated from that draft.

This encompasses every single player that was drafted to play 3-4 DE from '04-'10, some UDFA's, plus all that I could find that switched teams, plus most of this year's prospects.

All prospects are color coded by a simple rating system:


Gray text is assumed values, for when data isn't available (not used much, but it has its uses). Dark violet text is pro day data. All other data is combine data (I used combine data wherever possible).

Houston players yet to switch to a 3-4 are unrated, like rookies (hopefully I got 'em all).

Slow Pokes:



This is the first filter for prospects. Here there was way more correlation with the quality of the 10 than the quality of the 40, so 10 times were used.

My speed rating formula:
100*(1-(10 Time/(0.0114*(Wt/Ht)+1.1785)))

Was used, every prospect scoring -1.00 or less is in this group. Slow players are low success players, at least in the defensive front 7, here is no different. This is a very strong trend, I would personally avoid any in the slow group unless I was REALLY sure about them otherwise.

I came up with a 3-4 DE specific metric, formula that seems unusually effective. There was a correlation between the SS and the 3C, but not necessarily both, being good at one or the other seemed good enough. So I came up with the 3-4 DE simple agility rating formula, which is:

Agility Rating = 4.80 - SS + 7.80 - 3C

Which has a better correlation than either the 3 cone or the short shuttle individually.

The players above are sorted by their agility rating.

There is one player who is fast enough, but unusually unagile, but I didn't bother to print out his #'s, Kade Weston of NE.

.....

From there I split them into 3 different player types based on their mass. The DE types, the UT types, and the NT types. The first group split off was the NT group.

NT Types:



What defines a NT type? I used weight/height, if over 50.0, they are a jumbo DE or NT sized.

I split this group off early because their success seems at best vaguely related to the success of other groups.

The NT group is sorted by their explosive power rating, the same formula used for 3-4 OLB's.

Explosive power rating = (Vert + 3.5*Broad)*(Wt/Ht) / 3000

There isn't really a good way to rate this group apparent yet, I just kinda threw them all together and picked a sort that seemed appropriate, Ngata is #1 by many different sorts.

Low Explosion DE Types:



There are an unusual number of these guys this year.

What defined a DE types was anything less than 47.0 in the simple mass formula listed above (seemed like an appropriate place).

This group also had less than 1.00 in the explosive power rating formula.

There is some success in this group, and no outright busts, though there aren't any elite players either. Some good ones though. Many of these guys are pretty good at getting to the QB.

This group is sorted by the agility rating formula.

I don't have an issue with drafting any player in this group, especially those guys at top.

High Explosion, Low Agility DE Types:



This group used the same sizing criteria as the low explosion DE types, however everybody in this group scored 1.00 or better in the explosive power rating formula.

Oddly enough, there doesn't seem to be as much success here, but there is a good reason it seems. upcoming will be a different group that filters the cream of the crop off of this group. This group all performed relatively poorly in the agility drills, all have an agility rating of <0.50.

With no prospects this year, this group isn't all that interesting.

This group is sorted by the agility rating formula.

Low Explosion UT Types:



The UT types are defined as being between 47.0 and 50.0 in the simple mass formula. All of these guys scored less than a 1.00 in the explosive power formula.

Overall the rules for the DE types and the UT types seem the same. Both are broken into the same groups.

This is overall a very boom or bust group.

This group is sorted by the agility rating formula.

Unlike the DE types, there have been no high explosion, low agility UT types drafted or tried at 3-4 DE in the last 7 years.

Superior Prospects:



This group is assembled without regards to size. Every player in this group passed the speed filter, has a explosive power rating greater than 1.00, and an agility rating greater than 0.50. The only measurables not considered for inclusion in this group are arm length, bench reps, and 40 time (10 time is, 40 is used in lieu of the 10).

This is a group of across the board good athletes for the position.

There is a lot of success here. However it is a group that also averages 1.5 prospects per year. These guys are RARE.

Summary:

I think there are two strong trends here. Guy that are slow in the 10 don't make good 3-4 DE's. Guys that are very good across the board, have a very good chance of working out. Other guys are a bit hit or miss, however guys with good cone and shuttle times seem to do better.

Links:

3-4 OLB's, by the #'s
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Last edited by Waldo on Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:15 am; edited 1 time in total
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HawaiiFan808


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 1:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mike Neal looks like a steal now. Great post Waldo, as usual. Very Happy
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N. Collins Fan


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The greatest trend I see is that drafting this position is anyone's best guess. Not a lot of hits. Probably why these guys go in big numbers every year.
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packfan4


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 1:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Where would Kenrick Ellis fit in here? Love him as a prospect and NFP said we were interested in him. 6-5 346 lbs, ran a 5.19 40, 1.84 10, 2.99 20, bench 26X, that's all I could find on him. Pretty athletic considering his size, has some red flags that Ted needs to sold on though.
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Waldo


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 1:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

packfan4 wrote:
Where would Kenrick Ellis fit in here? Love him as a prospect and NFP said we were interested in him. 6-5 346 lbs, ran a 5.19 40, 1.84 10, 2.99 20, bench 26X, that's all I could find on him. Pretty athletic considering his size, has some red flags that Ted needs to sold on though.


The NT types.

Lacking a shuttle time and 3 cone time is tough. Those seem to be the best correlating drills to play at the position, along with the jumps.
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JungleCat55


Joined: 10 Mar 2011
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 1:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting study. There doesn't seem to be a significant correlation with these numbers. I was just curious why Aaron Smith wasn't included as one of the prospects examined seeing as how he is the best 3-4 DE in the league.
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packfan4


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 1:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Waldo wrote:
packfan4 wrote:
Where would Kenrick Ellis fit in here? Love him as a prospect and NFP said we were interested in him. 6-5 346 lbs, ran a 5.19 40, 1.84 10, 2.99 20, bench 26X, that's all I could find on him. Pretty athletic considering his size, has some red flags that Ted needs to sold on though.


The NT types.

Lacking a shuttle time and 3 cone time is tough. Those seem to be the best correlating drills to play at the position, along with the jumps.

Yeah, figured missing those #'s would hurt. I'll see if I can find anything, he's an intriguing prospect though. Can play 5-tech too, really great athlete considering his size.

*Didn't even see him in there, my bad.
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Waldo


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 2:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JungleCat55 wrote:
Interesting study. There doesn't seem to be a significant correlation with these numbers. I was just curious why Aaron Smith wasn't included as one of the prospects examined seeing as how he is the best 3-4 DE in the league.


I prefer full drafts to individual players, the players that didn't work are as or more valuable than the players that did.

2003 and before it becomes real hard to find #'s. Back then high prospects did not participate in the combine. You also begin to get into the time when fewer and fewer prospects went to training sessions meant to maximize their performance in the drills. To analyze based on #'s it has to be all or nothing, all of them practice, or none of them do. In the mid-late 90's and early 00's only some of the prospects practiced the drills. Just like passing stats pre-1978 have little relevance to today's game, combine workout numbers pre 2000-2003 have little relevance to today's numbers, unless you know specifically that they went to a combine camp.

I can find numbers for both Smith and Keisel, both are very agile, have a mass under 47.0, neither have explosion greater than 1.00, however both are in the slow poke group running very slow relative to guys nowadays. But in 1999 and 2002 I would not expect a mid round and late round pick defensive end to be spending weeks preparing for the combine, mastering the art of running a 40. Back then workout times begin to fall off dramatically relative to now (hence why Mamula's times were such a big deal, nowadays they were nothing special, but nowadays everybody works out).

There is correlation though.

Slow guys rarely make it. That list is a list of doom.
Being on the superior prospect list has a high correlation to success.

There are few elite players at the position as judged by the simple rating system of pro bowls.

These guys last a while.

A lot of the league's starters have no #'s. Pickett did not participate in the combine and has no #'s that can be found, Jenkins has no #'s that can be found. Jolly has no good #'s that can be found. Canty was the same way, as is Seymore, and Warren.

Spears and Dockett had to have a critical # assumed (If Dockett's 3C was in the 7.20 range he would be #2 in that category, not in the middle, Spears' broad jump is his vert / 3.5).
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chillparsi1


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 4:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What's your take on Corey Liuget? Kid seems to be falling a bit (overtaken by Wilkerson) and looks like he might be around where we pick.
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palmy50


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 9:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not sure how I feel about that one Waldo. There is just too much that goes into interior line play for me to buy into that one half as much as I would with the rushers. (not to say I would buy that cow either Wink )
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N. Collins Fan


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 10:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Waldo wrote:
Slow guys rarely make it. That list is a list of doom.
Being on the superior prospect list has a high correlation to success.


Obvious numbers are obvious.
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nfldraftguru1


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 11:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

N. Collins Fan wrote:
Waldo wrote:
Slow guys rarely make it. That list is a list of doom.
Being on the superior prospect list has a high correlation to success.


Obvious numbers are obvious.


That was a John Madden moment...
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AirOnRodgers


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2011 12:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

nfldraftguru1 wrote:
N. Collins Fan wrote:
Waldo wrote:
Slow guys rarely make it. That list is a list of doom.
Being on the superior prospect list has a high correlation to success.


Obvious numbers are obvious.


That was a John Madden moment...


http://encyclopediadramatica.com/X_Y_is_X
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Sandybaby716


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2011 12:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't see Raji in any of the groups..where would he end up?
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Waldo


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2011 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

palmy50 wrote:
Not sure how I feel about that one Waldo. There is just too much that goes into interior line play for me to buy into that one half as much as I would with the rushers. (not to say I would buy that cow either Wink )


To buy into that guys that run slow don't do well on the line, and guys that do good at everything tend to become good players?

One point of this exercise is to define what good and bad is at various things (something that you probably know, but most here don't).

Also by clustering players, it helps to get good comparisons for how a guy is physically.

I don't really think that the data shows any more than that. There is no correlation between eliteness and doing good at particular things. The only real correlation is slow guys don't do well (contrary to the commonly talked up line up crap that the runs don't matter for the big guys), and guys that really excel across the board tend to turn out alright.

This means that when talking upside later prospects, I will probably look at Allen Baily before any others. That whole big bunch of DE type guys (Clayborn-Levinston) is one to keep an eye on, since they have few good comparisons playing in 3-4 D's, with nice movement #'s, that group really makes this class unique, in 7 years there hasn't been a single guy really all that close to them.

I think it is also interesting, on paper Wilkerson is really similar to Odrick, probably the best paper comparison among all these guys.
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