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My statistical case against keeping a long snapper

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by jeffbiologist, Aug 21, 2008.

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  1. jeffbiologist

    jeffbiologist Rookie

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    Over the past 7 years we have played 16x7+17=129 games. How many games have been won or lost by less than 3 points...only 3! or 3/129=2.3%. Now change that to less than 4 points and the number jumps to 25/129=19%!! Call it a round 20%....

    Now what percentage of SNAPS does Paxton get right? And what percentage does Hochstien/working backup get right?

    Since 2002 there have been 453 attempts or an avg of 75/yr for the pats. If you figure a non-specialist makes say 4 bad snaps a year....or 5%.

    The odds that ONE of those bad snaps would happen in a close game--You get 1%!! That means you would lose a game on a bad snap based on having a non specialist save a roster spot once every 6 years. Now how many times have we run out of decent players at a position and it costs us a game?? More than 1%?? YOU BETTER BELIEVE IT!! Nothing personal Lonnie, hope you have secret pics of BB in a safe place.
  2. Deus Irae

    Deus Irae PatsFans.com Retired Jersey Club PatsFans.com Supporter

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    This year.... preseason, game 2.....

    End of story.

    P.S. My point is about a 'non-specialist' and the result of a bad snap, not the specific people involved in the specific play.
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2008
  3. pats1

    pats1 Moderator PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Last edited: Aug 21, 2008
  4. dhamz

    dhamz Rookie

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    When doing your analysis, did you forget that we occasionally run this obscure play known as the punt that also requires a long snapper?
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2008
  5. OhExaulted1

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    #15 Jersey

    That was Dan Connolly, not Lonie Paxton.
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  6. Deus Irae

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    .... exactly
  7. pats1

    pats1 Moderator PatsFans.com Supporter

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    For the record, I have never seen one of Paxton's "backups" actually long-snap in a game. Hochstein or Stupar, who were Paxton's "backups" in camp this year, have never long snapped in a game, IIRC.
  8. OhExaulted1

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    Gotcha, misunderstood.
  9. TheGodInAGreyHoodie

    TheGodInAGreyHoodie Rookie

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    I vaguely remember hearing of those... Pats didn't use that play too many times last year....but doesn't a PAT kick also require the long snapper... we had bunch of those plays.
  10. italia44

    italia44 Rookie

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    There's lies....damn lies...and STATISTICS!

    BB will never,ever,ever.....like,ya know,
    NEVER.go without a designated Long-snapper.

    .......don't even go there
  11. Rob0729

    Rob0729 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I don't get the logic here. Say we don't have a specialist and the non-specialist long snaps a snap that sails over the the place holder's or punter's head and the opposing team recovers it and returns it for a TD and the opposing team wins by 10 points, how does that fit in these stats. I am using an extreme to show one bad snap can mean more than 3 points. We keep a long snapper.
  12. unoriginal

    unoriginal Rookie

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    The problem going without a designated long snapper like Lonie Paxton isn't just the expertise and ability, though that is real nice to have.

    It's the fact that the designated long snapper - simply because he doesn't do anything else during the course of the football game - is less likely then any of the backups/position players to get himself injured or dinged up in such a way performance becomes an issue.

    Say David Thomas, Russ Hochstein, Stupar, and Dan Koppen were our committee of long snappers. For some random game, Stupar is a healthy scratch, and they go into a game with 3. But then Neal goes out in the first quarter, so Hochstein has to play right guard. Then David Thomas gets his bell rung in the 3rd and has to leave the game. Now you're down to Dan Koppen, and its :23 left to go in the 4th, he's been blocking, say, John Henderson all game and he's woozy and his arms are tired.

    The other two specialists on your field goal team - the kicker and the punter - probably haven't even broken a sweat by this point in the game. Meanwhile, Koppen's in the huddle saying "Guys, my snapping arm is dead numb... hey Logan, can you do this one?"
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2008
  13. emoney_33

    emoney_33 Rookie

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    Nice attempt but there are a lot of things missing in your analysis, as others have already pointed out, including but not limited to:

    *The long snapper is used in more than just FG attempts.
    *You took the "bad" snaps a year number out of the air.
    *The impact of a bad snap is not confined to simply missing 3 points.
  14. tombonneau

    tombonneau Rookie

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    Too bad. Using our old friend Mike Bartrum as 3rd TE/LS didn't seemed to have hurt the Eagles. Sure would have liked to have had him and an extra roster spot all these years ...
  15. jeffbiologist

    jeffbiologist Rookie

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    First, thanks for the responses, I didnt know there were so many teams with such dedication. But as a scientist I revert back to numbers(no, not a baseball guy,lol). I understand the bad snap on punts, but that is a statistic not so easy to find. And I understand the idea of keeping him "special", "precious" and "clean"......but my point is with ALL these OL guys walking in and out the door why cant we find one backup that can do it on the side?? Arent there college players, position players, drafted at their positions that long snap?? Arent those guys now worth a couple extra rounds higher in the draft if they can save a roster spot? I am not looking for Danny White or Tom Tupa, but this team is supposed to be versitile....and I would think if someone on the bubble could also be a long snapper they might make the team alot easier. Right?
  16. RayClay

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    Football is a game of situations, which is why aggregate statistics rarely mean diddly.

    Many people argued that a lot of lesser paid kickers kicked almost exact percentage or better than Vinatieri and made less. they were right, yet it didn't tell the whole story.

    Big situations mean big pressure. Substitute 2-3 bad snaps for vinatieri's clutch FGs. in pressure situations and you see why.

    2-3 bad snaps over years is statistically insignificant. In major clutch situations, it costs Super Bowls.
  17. RayClay

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    Might is not what you want in a big game. What spot are you saving? The 4th string safety?
  18. Deus Irae

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    Teams carry all sorts of specialists. In fact, anything else is a rarity. It's a game that's become more and more specialized as time has gone by. Linebackers are now subbed out for the pass. Running backs come in just for 3rd downs. Guys like Hester are kept whether or not they can play any other position. Versatility is great, and I'm sure BB would love to have a 350 pound player who could line up at DL, DB, QB, P, K and KR, but overall team excellence is the primary concern.
  19. pats1

    pats1 Moderator PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Your stats are great, but the fact of the matter is this question has been raised before and quite simply teams are trending more and more towards exclusive long snappers, not vice versa.
  20. Lamanai

    Lamanai Rookie

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    Jeff, thanks for starting a thread that has actually prompted some decent discussion.

    With that being said, I don't agree with you. As others have pointed out, some of your estimates include "plug" numbers. In the absence of accurate, on point, hard data you had to use what is available, I guess. Can't fault you for that too much. However, one thing that is missing is the computation as to the incremental benefit of efffectively adding your 46th player to game day roster. I suggest it is pretty near impossible to calculate. Most likely, he is going to be exclusively a STer too, out there for most of the same plays as a LS. However, in my opinion the value of that 46th player who contributes on ST is far less that the loss of a reliable long snapper who you know is not gonna turn the game around with a snap over the punter's head or botched FG.

    Just another way to think about it...
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