Using Analytics And Air Yards To Examine Roethlisberger’s Third-Down Aggressiveness
This piece may turn out to be just declaiming personal boredom. And for that, I apologize. But, as a Pittsburgh Steelers fan - and even a football fan in general - nothing breaks me like a team throwing a screen pass or a wide receiving bubble in third when there is more than five yards […]

This piece may turn out to be just declaiming personal boredom.

And for that, I apologize.

But, as a Pittsburgh Steelers fan - and even a football fan in general - nothing breaks me like a team throwing a screen pass or a wide receiving bubble in third when there is more than five yards to go. .

I'm unusually angry when he's third with eight or more yards to go.

In many cases it seems like the attack is playing for a few extra yards of field position for the bettor rather than being aggressive and going for the first down.

The Steelers certainly weren't innocent of having such a season. In fact, Pittsburgh - while facing a third down with between five and ten yards to go this season - has chosen to throw for zero to three yards on the air 13 times.

In the other yards, the passing distance in the air was not aggressive enough to reach the first marker down.

Like I said, it's nothing more than a small personal inconvenience. But it made me wonder:

Which quarterbacks are the most aggressive in the league in these types of situations?

To answer that, I decided to filter all the plays for the 2020 season to include only those that happened in third place with between five and ten yards to go. To determine the aggressiveness of the QBs - that is, how often they threw the ball at clubs or more - I calculated the following formula:

Aggressiveness% = sum (Air Yards> = Yards Needed) / Attempts

It's a pretty straightforward concept. I add up all the passing attempts for the individual quarterbacks where the overhead yards equal the total or more yards needed. For example, in a third and fifth situation, the QB would need to throw the ball - at a minimum - five yards to the landing point. This sum is then divided by the total number of attempts in the third failure situation.

The end result is an aggressiveness percentage - or, how often a quarterback has thrown at sticks or past in a third situation with five to ten yards to go. The results are interesting.

Joe Burrow of Cincinnati (get well soon, sure!) Leads the NFL in aggression at nearly 70%. Baker Mayfield of Cleveland is right behind him at 66%.

For the Pittsburgh loyalists, Roethlisberger is right in the middle of the NFL with an aggressiveness rating of 53%.

That said: which receivers captured those passes when Roethlisberger chose to be aggressive and turn to sticks?

With a small adjustment of the above formula, we can arrive at this graph:

Not really surprising. This is the cast of characters that you would expect Roethlisberger to trust in these situations. Plus, with his nine receptions in these aggressive situations, Chase Claypool is near the top of the standings. AJ Green of the Bengals and Anthony Miller of the Chicago Bears both have 14 receptions in total while three players have 11 and six others have 10.

Watching a season is interesting. But what does Roethlisberger's aggression statistic look like over the course of his career?

First off, you'll notice a lack of aggression stats for Roethlisberger's first two seasons in the NFL (2004 and 2005). Indeed, the air yard metric was still in its infancy and was not widely followed until the 2006 season, where you see Roethlisberger's stats in the graph above.

There is very little year-over-year difference for Roethlisberger's aggression stats, except in 2015, where he skyrocketed to just over 71% - the highest number in his career . Even more, it was an oddity in Todd Haley's attack. During Haley's years as an offensive coordinator, Roethlisberger's aggression rate remained in the range of around 55-60%.

The 2015 jump to 71% is, by far, the biggest jump for Roethlisberger under any offensive coordinator. Seeking an explanation for this, however, will be another article for another day.

Finally, since we've looked at Roethlisberger's aggressiveness throughout his career, let's also take a look at receivers throughout his career to catch his "aggressive attempts":

Mr. Big Chest himself, Antonio Brown, is Pittsburgh's career leader in catching Roethlisberger balls deemed aggressive by the above formula. With 129 of those receptions, Brown surpasses the 79 receptions of Hines Ward and Heath Miller and Santonio Holmes, with 65 and 62 catches, respectively.


This is a beginners guide to betting, written by a beginner ! You might not know this about me, but whilst Ian is a football betting professionnel with a long history of placing football bets, I am not ! I know the digitale and how to make things on it, but I don’t know a lot about .

I do love this site though, so I wanted to learn more about football betting so that I can better contribute to the conversations on it. I have been researching things for some time and thought I would write them up as a guide to betting.

You might wonder why I didn’t ask Ian to write this guide, him being the professionnel, the truth is I thought it would be better coming from someone picking up the ropes. Ian knows so much he might assume you know something you don’t, I don’t know anything so that can’t happen !

These are the two most common way to place bets these days so I wanted to cover them in a little detail. We don’t hide that fact that Ian prefers singles but that doesn’t help you if you don’t know the main differences.

When you bet with an accumulator, all your bets need to win in order for you to be able to claim the money. This makes it much harder to win but évidemment the reward is far greater. As a new bettor it is very tempting to bet on accumulators because you could see your £10 stake spiral into big bucks pretty quick.

Beginners Guide to Football BettingThis is a beginners guide to betting, written by a beginner ! You might not know this about me, but whilst Ian is a betting spécialiste with a long history of placing football bets, I am not ! I know the web and how to make things on it, but I don’t know a lot about . I do love this site though, so I wanted to learn more about football betting so that I can better contribute to the conversations on it. I have been researching things for some time and thought I would write them up as a guide to football betting. You might wonder why I didn’t ask Ian to write this guide, him being the expert, the truth is I thought it would be better coming from someone picking up the ropes. Ian knows so much he might assume you know something you don’t, I don’t know anything so that can’t happen ! Something that you might benefit from is our free tipster mail course. It is a free email course that takes 7 days to complete and by the end of it you should be a bit of an spécialiste ! Some Football Betting TermsI figured I would start off with some football betting terms. Stake – This is the amount of money you place on a bet, in other words the amount of money you stand to lose if you don’t win. Accumulator – A accumulator is a series of solo bets grouped together, if each of the bets comes off then the odds accumulate together. Normally when you hear of people putting a fiver on something and winning a couple of thousand it is because of accumulators. Because each bet needs to win though they can be risky. Handicap – This is a bet that is offered when one team is the clear favourite – Think Brazil vs your local old boys team ! The handicap gives a small advantage to the underdog. For example, there may be a one goal head start given to the underdog. I am going to explain Handicapping more later in this article. Half Time/Full Time – This type of bet is split into two, when you predict the winner of the first half then of the entire game. So you could predict a draw at half time but for the home team to win by full time. Banker – This is basically the closet thing to a certainty as you can get, the tipster is very sure that the bet will land if they consider it a banker. For example we give banker tips to our members. Scorecast – This is when you bet on a player to score the first goal along with predicting the acceptable score. Wincast – Very similar to a scorecast but you bet on a player to score and then predict the winner of the game. Minute Betting – This is mentioned a lot when people bet on individual players ( maybe as goal scorers ) normally if the player doesn’t make an appearance the bet is called off, but if the player appears during the normal minutes of the game they are eligible for the bet. 24 Hour Rule – Most betting websites have a rule like this where if a match is postponed the bet only becomes void if the match doesn’t get played within a 24 hour period. So for example if a match was just put back 2 hours the bet would still stand. Over/Under – Overs and Unders are when you bet on the amount of goals being scored, normally it will be over or under an amount, for example over 2. 5 means if there are 3 or more goals. Under 2. 5 would be 0, 1, or 2 goals being scored. DNB – This stands for Draw No Bet. What this means is if the score is a draw you get your money back for your bet. This can be seen as a safer option but you should understand that the odds are usually lower when this is selected. Double Chance – A Double Chance bet is one where you pick a winner and if they win OR it is a draw, you win the bet. If the team you pick loses then you lose the bet. Like DNB the odds are generally lower but it is a safer bet as a result. Bankroll – how much money you have to bet with. We’ve written more about what the bankroll is. HandicapsHandicaps are something that confused the heck out of me for the longest time, so I want to spend a while looking at them in detail. This is such a common question that I have written up a guide to the Asian and European handicapping. Want to learn how to be an expert bettor for free ? JOIN OUR EMAIL COURSEAccumulators Vs SinglesThese are the two most common way to place bets these days so I wanted to cover them in a little detail. We don’t hide that fact that Ian prefers singles but that doesn’t help you if you don’t know the main differences. When you bet with an accumulator, all your bets need to win in order for you to be able to claim the money. This makes it much harder to win but bien sûr the reward is far greater. As a new football bettor it is very tempting to bet on accumulators because you could see your £10 stake spiral into big bucks pretty quick. Singles on the other hand are not effected by other bets. So if I place £10 on three different matches as singles and 2 of them come in, then I make money on those two bets. The odds aren’t as good if I was to role up all my bets into an accumulator, but the odds of me walking away with some money are much higher.

The main advice here is to find what it right for you. Just because some people swear by accumulators and others swear by singles doesn’t mean you should listen to the loudest voice. Do some research, maybe put some small stakes on a few different ways and see what felt good and what had a good return on your investment.

Beginners Guide to Football BettingThis is a beginners guide to football betting, written by a beginner ! You might not know this about me, but whilst Ian is a betting expert with a long history of placing football bets, I am not ! I know the web and how to make things on it, but I don’t know a lot about football. I do love this site though, so I wanted to learn more about football betting so that I can better contribute to the conversations on it. I have been researching things for some time and thought I would write them up as a guide to betting. You might wonder why I didn’t ask Ian to write this guide, him being the spécialiste, the truth is I thought it would be better coming from someone picking up the ropes. Ian knows so much he might assume you know something you don’t, I don’t know anything so that can’t happen ! Something that you might benefit from is our free tipster courier course. It is a free mail course that takes 7 days to complete and by the end of it you should be a bit of an spécialiste ! Some Football Betting TermsI figured I would start off with some betting terms. Stake – This is the amount of money you place on a bet, in other words the amount of money you stand to lose if you don’t win. Accumulator – A football accumulator is a series of solo bets grouped together, if each of the bets comes off then the odds accumulate together. Normally when you hear of people putting a fiver on something and winning a couple of thousand it is because of accumulators. Because each bet needs to win though they can be risky. Handicap – This is a bet that is offered when one team is the clear favourite – Think Brazil vs your local old boys team ! The handicap gives a small advantage to the underdog. For example, there may be a one goal head start given to the underdog. I am going to explain Handicapping more later in this article. Half Time/Full Time – This type of bet is split into two, when you predict the winner of the first half then of the entire game. So you could predict a draw at half time but for the home team to win by full time. Banker – This is basically the closet thing to a certainty as you can get, the tipster is very sure that the bet will land if they consider it a banker. For example we give banker tips to our members. Scorecast – This is when you bet on a player to score the first goal along with predicting the convenable score. Wincast – Very similar to a scorecast but you bet on a player to score and then predict the winner of the game. Minute Betting – This is mentioned a lot when people bet on individual players ( maybe as goal scorers ) normally if the player doesn’t make an appearance the bet is called off, but if the player appears during the normal 90 minutes of the game they are eligible for the bet. 24 Hour Rule – Most betting websites have a rule like this where if a match is postponed the bet only becomes void if the match doesn’t get played within a 24 hour period. So for example if a match was just put back 2 hours the bet would still stand. Over/Under – Overs and Unders are when you bet on the amount of goals being scored, normally it will be over or under an amount, for example over 2. 5 means if there are 3 or more goals. Under 2. 5 would be 0, 1, or 2 goals being scored. DNB – This stands for Draw No Bet. What this means is if the score is a draw you get your money back for your bet. This can be seen as a safer option but you should understand that the odds are usually lower when this is selected. Double Chance – A Double Chance bet is one where you pick a winner and if they win OR it is a draw, you win the bet. If the team you pick loses then you lose the bet. Like DNB the odds are generally lower but it is a safer bet as a result. Bankroll – how much money you have to bet with. We’ve written more about what the bankroll is. HandicapsHandicaps are something that confused the heck out of me for the longest time, so I want to spend a while looking at them in detail. This is such a common question that I have written up a guide to the Asian and European handicapping. Want to learn how to be an professionnel football bettor for free ? JOIN OUR EMAIL COURSEAccumulators Vs SinglesThese are the two most common way to place bets these days so I wanted to cover them in a little detail. We don’t hide that fact that Ian prefers singles but that doesn’t help you if you don’t know the main differences. When you bet with an accumulator, all your bets need to win in order for you to be able to claim the money. This makes it much harder to win but évidemment the reward is far greater. As a new bettor it is very tempting to bet on accumulators because you could see your £10 stake spiral into big bucks pretty quick. Singles on the other hand are not effected by other bets. So if I place £10 on three different matches as singles and 2 of them come in, then I make money on those two bets. The odds aren’t as good if I was to role up all my bets into an accumulator, but the odds of me walking away with some money are much higher. The main advice here is to find what it right for you. Just because some people swear by accumulators and others swear by singles doesn’t mean you should listen to the loudest voice. Do some research, maybe put some small stakes on a few different ways and see what felt good and what had a good return on your investment. Getting your way with the bookiesSomething you will encounter when you start betting is a range of different online and offline bookmakers. All will have their own way of dealing with things and all will want you to work with them differently. This can seem daunting but we’ve written up a guide on what to look out for and how to state your case if you think a bookmaker has wronged you.

There are two things I have caught myself doing related to being greedy, the first is adding extra teams into an accumulator just because it will bump up my maximum payout. This is almost always a dramatiques idea ! The deuxième thing I have done is bet more money on a team than I initially was going to. You should have a plan for how much you are going to bet and stick to it.

You are not going to win every bet, if you want to become successful at betting on football you need to be patient and pick the right bets for you. Never bet more than you can afford to loseBefore I place a bet I always think about the money I am going to be placing on it and think, if I were to lose this money right now would I be OK with that. If the answer is no I won’t place the bet.

They are too unpredictable, you don’t know how much effort the respective teams are putting in and reserve players may get an outing that you weren’t counting on. If the friendlies are before the start of a new season ( they often are ) players will be very aware to not pick up any injuries so might not play as hard as they normally do.

What I mean by this is that two teams can look a certain way on paper, but if one of those teams has already won the league and the other is fighting to stay in the league there is a very good chance that the team good on paper will be on auto pilot whilst the team playing to stay out of relegation is going to be fighting for their life !

If ever there was a post to comment on with your questions this would be it ! The only stupid question is the one not asked. We’re also really keen on hearing where we can improve this article, so if you still have questions or something wasn’t clear, it was because we’ve done a bad job and we would love you to tell us how to do better. If you’re hungry for more, I can highly recommend our free courier course.

Unfortunately a lot of money is wasted because people place bets without really knowing too much about what they are doing. If you know someone like that please feel free to share this with them. The social media share links are below if you’d like to share on Facebook etc.

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