PFF: Grading Colt McCoy and QB's Under Pressure

Last week, Pro Football Focus graded quarterbacks under pressure. How did Colt McCoy do compared to the rest of the league's quarterbacks? PFF broke things down into the following categories: avoiding sacks under pressure, touchdown to interception ratio under pressure, and completion percentage under pressure.

  • Pressured Into Sacks: McCoy was pressured on 179 of his dropbacks, getting sacked 33 times (18.4% of the time). He ranked 16th in the league in this category. The top three quarterbacks in the league were Eli Manning (11.5%), Michael Vick (11.6%), and Drew Brees (13.8%). Among the people below McCoy were Aaron Rodgers (22.8%) and Ben Roethlisberger (21.6%). I don't think this was a make-or-break issue for McCoy, especially when quarterbacks have to take more sacks when their receivers can't get separation.
  • Touchdown to Interception Ratio Under Pressure: McCoy ranked 26th in the league in this category, throwing 2 touchdowns to 4 interceptions under pressure. I'm not sure what PFF considers under pressure, but I think a lot of us remember plays in which McCoy would roll out and stupidly throw an interception deep down the field on an early down. Those type of decisions can't hang around long-term for a starting quarterback.
  • Completions Under Pressure: McCoy completed 58-of-125 passes (46.4%), which was good for 14th best in the league. Out of all the categories, this one seems to have the closest reflection to the actual ability of a quarterback. It's a two-way street for McCoy's percentage to improve here -- better receivers at getting open, and better ball placement by McCoy.

To close things out, PFF had an "Overall Grade" for pressured passing. I'm not sure exactly how they calculated it, but their overall assessment of McCoy under pressure was quite low. He ranked 31st overall, with only Blaine Gabbert, Joe Flacco, and Mark Sanchez ranking worse. As always, interpret all of this information with a grain of salt, as many final statistics don't tell the true story of a quarterback's success.

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