Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota Are Having Better Rookie Seasons Than You Think
Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota will always be connected to each other. That's just what happens when you're a first-round quarterback in today's NFL -- the media will consistently compare you to other first-round passers from your draft class.
So, with that being said, how have Winston and Mariota compared thus far in their rookie campaigns? How about versus other rookie passers over the past decade?
Based on our Net Expected Points (NEP) metrics, both quarterbacks are having close to ideal rookie campaigns. Within context, of course.
Over the past 10 seasons, 24 rookie quarterbacks have taken at least 300 drop backs. Winston and Mariota rank tied for fourth and sixth, respectively, in per drop back efficiency. Their 0.10 and 0.08 values in these categories bode well for the two quarterbacks -- Robert Griffin III is the only quarterback ahead of them who hasn't sustained success in his career, which can be partially -- partially - attributed to injury.
|Year||Team||Name||Passing NEP per Drop Back|
|2012||WAS||Robert Griffin III||0.17|
Both having efficiency at Cam Newton levels is only a good sign.
Next, we can look at their Passing Success Rates, which represent the percentage of positively plays (via NEP) made by the quarterbacks. Mariota is fourth and Winston is eighth among the subset. Again, Griffin III is the only quarterback ahead of them to not sustain success.
|Year||Team||Name||Pass Successes||Pass Success Rate|
|2012||WAS||Robert Griffin III||206||48.24%|
Having a strong combination of both Passing NEP per drop back and Success Rate should help them progress going forward -- with neither of these values being low, we know that both quarterbacks are not relying on occasional deep balls to help them have unstable averages. In other words, both quarterbacks shouldn't be at risk for regression.
Given how they've played, Mariota's and Winston are both trending towards surpassing Cam Newton's Passing NEP total during his rookie season. And they've both already surpassed Andrew Luck's rookie season Passing NEP total of 36.68.
In the end, the future is bright for these two quarterbacks and -- if history tells us anything -- we should be enjoying them lead their teams for years to come.