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Most accurate NFL QBs by pass depth in 2017

Jan 21, 2018; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) gives a thumbs-up before the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC Championship Game at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

This offseason, we introduced PFF’s new advanced quarterback charting data, featuring an entirely new way of evaluating the game’s most important position. While the QB Annual and PFF Draft Guide are the best place to start for a broad overview of each NFL quarterback’s advanced accuracy, I’ll be taking you through an in-depth breakdown of our data points throughout the spring and summer.

First, be sure to read the overview of our process, and it’s always nice to have this image handy when going through the data.

Today’s focus is overall accuracy at various pass depths, including “accuracy plus” which is our way of identifying “perfect” throws.

For this study, we will lump all throws labeled as “accurate,” “frame,” and “away from coverage” into the “accurate” bucket. The “away from coverage” designation is our way of crediting the quarterback with placing the ball away from the leverage of the defender, so passes that may look like they’re high, low, back or front in the diagram may actually be considered accurate for the purposes of our charting and they get the “away from coverage” label.

Passes in the “accurate” and “away from coverage” buckets get lumped in to the “accurate plus” designation which is the highest level of accuracy. I’ll break down the top-five in both overall accurate passes and “accurate plus” passes, sorted by pass depth.

Remember: this is all about actual ball location of the pass, not just throwing a “catchable” pass. We’ve proven the importance of ball location with regard to yards after the catch and expected points added, so putting the ball in the right spot is crucial in order to optimize success.

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