Data Points: Passer rating on the rise

The one statistic -– albeit far from perfect –- that’s often used to gauge quarterbacks is passer rating, seemingly a deranged mathematician’s concoction of completion percentage, touchdowns, interceptions, yards per throw, and a shot of pre-calc thrown in. Flawless or not, seeing where today’s quarterbacks stack up with passers of yesteryear based on their efficiency rating brings up some eye-popping results.

Clearly, quarterback play has gotten better. Or, at the very least, the environment in which modern-day signalcallers play has improved: offensive linemen can use their hands much more liberally in pass protection than in the ‘70s and ‘80s. Defensive backs aren’t allowed to so much as breathe on wide receivers, while quarterbacks really aren’t allowed to get touched. Those reasons, along with better development of young quarterbacks from high school up, play into the above numbers.

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