This post compares career touchdown distributions of quarterbacks to running backs.
Consider two datasets – career touchdowns for the top two
running backs chosen in the NFL draft and career touchdowns for the top two
quarterbacks chosen in the NFL draft.
How do the shapes of the distributions for career TDs for
toptwo running backs and career TDs for toptwo quarterbacks differ?
Data: The data for this post can be found at
The datasets cover the top two running backs picked and the
top two quarterbacks picked for every draft from 1970 to 2002.
Analysis:
Below I present estimates for the mean, median, standard
deviation, skew, kurtosis, and percent of observations less than 10% of the
average for our sample of running backs and quarterbacks.
Running
Backs

Quarterbacks


Mean

41.00

103.53

Median

27.00

82.50

Standard Deviation

36.98

101.54

Skew

1.17

1.26

Kurtosis

1.07

2.15

Percent < 10% of
average

7.81%

21.88%

Minimum

0

0

Maximum

164

491

Average TDs is 41 for our sample of running backs versus 103
for our sample of quarterbacks.
The median TDs for our samples are lower than the mean
TDs. Skew is higher for quarterbacks
than running backs.
The reason for the larger skew for quarterbacks is that a
larger number of quarterbacks have relatively few TDS. (Many toppick quarterbacks don’t get any
playing time.)
I believe the higher kurtosis of the quarterback career TD
total statistics largely stems from the fatter left tail of the quarterback career
total statistics but perhaps there are other differences in the data sets
driving the difference in kurtosis statistics.
What are the
potential implications of this comparison towards the decision to use a top
draft pick to obtain either a quarterback or a running back?
The risk of coming up empty is a lot higher when drafting
quarterbacks than when drafting running backs.
#NFL DRAFT
#KURTOSIS
#SKEW
#SKEWNESS
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