News & Analysis

PFF's signature stat leaders through Week 2 of the 2019 college football season

At Pro Football Focus, we collect a ton of data and our player grades get most of the attention.  However, we have also used that vast database to identify relevant statistics that give an even greater idea of just how productive players are, either in given situations (e.g., QB play when under pressure) or on a per-snap basis (e.g., pass-rush productivity).  

This week — and periodically throughout the season — we will examine the leaders in college football for our signature statistics.  To read even more about the statistics themselves, click here.

Adjusted Completion %

1. Justin Fields, Ohio State – 90.9%

2. Joe Burrow, LSU – 87.9%

Needless to say, it appears Justin Fields skill set, and the Ryan Day offense has clicked thus far in Columbus.  What makes Fields accuracy to this point even more impressive is his average depth of target (aDot) of 11.8 yards is 23rd in the country, and he’s yet to have a turnover-worthy play.

Clean-Pocket Passer Rating

1. Justin Fields, Ohio State – 154.8 

2. Anthony Gordon, Washington State – 149.9 

While Gardner Minshew is now the starting quarterback for the Jacksonville Jaguars, Mike Leach’s newest passer is predictably excelling from a clean pocket through two games. The nation will get to see Gordon on display tonight as they travel to Houston.

Under-Pressure Passer Rating

1. Sean Clifford, Penn State – 152.1 

2. Brady White, Memphis – 151.0 

Albeit against Idaho and Buffalo, Clifford has shown himself quite capable through two games. The Nittany Lions face Pittsburgh this week and then get into their conference games. Thus far, when pressured, Clifford is 7-10, 190 yards and two touchdowns for a nation-leading 152.1 passer rating.  

Deep Passing Passer Rating

1. Steven Montez, Colorado – 149.3 

2. Sam Howell, North Carolina – 147.3 

While Montez came into the season with 1,064 career snaps and known ability, Howell is a true freshman who’s led the Tar Heels to a surprising 2-0 start.  On 20-plus yard passes, the two have combined to go 17-26, 587 yards and six touchdowns (three each).

Yards Per Route Run (wide receivers)

1. Jerry Jeudy, Alabama – 4.62

2. Darrell Stewart Jr., Michigan State – 4.23 

One name not shockingly on a list of leaders is Jerry Jeudy.  After finishing ninth in yards per route run a year ago (3.32), the Crimson Tide receiver is off to a scorching start, with 18 receptions for 240 yards and four scores. Tua has targeted him early and often, with 25 targets on just 52 routes run (48%). The three other returning receivers (Jaylen Waddle, Henry Ruggs III and DeVonta Smith) have 28 targets in the first two games.

Yards Per Route Run (tight ends)

1. Josh Pederson, Louisiana Monroe – 3.93

2. Hunter Bryant, Washington – 3.67

Pederson has been targeted on 44% of his routes, while Bryant has been targeted 33% of his. The two have combined to catch 19-of-23 targets for 227 yards. Pederson caught six of his nine targets for 85 yards in the Warhawks' 1-point overtime loss to Florida State this past weekend.

Elusive Rating

1. Jordan Mason, Georgia Tech – 230.4

2. Travis Etienne, Clemson – 213.6

This measure shows just how much the running back is doing independent of his blocking – and the higher the number, the better.  Mason has avoided 18 tackles (second-most, nationally) and averages 4.74 yards after contact per attempt, while Etienne has forced 12 missed tackles and averaged 5.04 yards after contact per rush.

Breakaway Percentage

1. Benny LeMay, Charlotte – 75.1%

2. Jaylen Warren, Utah State – 74.8% 

Chunk or big plays. Breakaway percentage shows up the backs who get the biggest percentage of their yardage from 15-plus-yard runs.  Both LeMay and Warren have right around 75% of their 233 and 246 yards, respectively, from big plays.

Offensive Line Pass-Blocking Efficiency

1. Kentucky – 96.5 

2. Oklahoma State – 96.1 

Given so many linemen through two games have yet to give up a pressure or sack (and thus have 100.0 pass-blocking efficiencies), we examine the team offensive lines who’ve been the most efficient in pass blocking.  At the top thus far is the Kentucky Wildcats' offensive line, who’ve given up only four total pressures, including just one sack, through two games. Currently, six of their seven highest-graded offensive players are linemen. This week is a whole different test for the Wildcats, though, as Florida and their two top-five edge rushers, Jabari Zuniga and Jonathan Greenard, are ready to give tackles Landon Young (81.6 grade) and Darian Kinnard (79.6 grade) fits.

Run-Stop Percentage (interior defensive linemen)

1. Myles Adams, Rice – 16.1%

2. McTelvin Agim, Arkansas – 15.0%

It’s been a struggle for the Razorbacks thus far, but Agim has been at least one bright spot. In addition to his six stops on 40 run-defense snaps, Agim has 10 total pressures, including three sacks, through two games.

Run-Stop Percentage (edge defenders)

1. Kendall Futrell, East Carolina – 18.9%

2. Dayo Odeyingbo, Vanderbilt – 18.2%

The senior Futrell has started off well for the Pirates. He has a 78.3 overall grade and 10 stops on 53 run-defense snaps in addition to eight total pressures.  He has also yet to miss a tackle.  

Run-Stop Percentage (linebackers)

1. Jordyn Brooks, Texas Tech – 24.0%

2. John Lako, Akron – 21.5%

Coming off a 2018 season that earned a 90.9 grade, John Lako is picking up where he left off, leading all linebackers with 14 stops on 65 run-defense snaps. Last week against UAB, Lako recorded 11 of those 14 stops without missing a tackle. 

Pass-Rush Productivity (interior defenders)

1. Theo Majette, Kent State – 14.0

2. McTelvin Agim, Arkansas – 12.7

Measuring a player’s pass-rushing production on a per snap basis, Majette and Agim are leading the pack early. Majette has 11 total pressures, including three sacks, three QB hits and five hurries. 

Pass-Rush Productivity (edge defenders)

1. Oluwole Betiku Jr, Illinois – 16.3

2. Jabari Zuniga, Florida – 14.2

While Zuniga is currently our highest-graded edge defender (93.3 overall grade), Betiku Jr has been slightly more productive on a per-snap basis.  Through two games, Betiku Jr has 12 total pressures on 52 pass-rush snaps, including being tied for the nation’s leader in sacks (5).

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