Jared Wayne and Carter Warren, and Updated Grades

Jared Wayne
Carter Warren

As for the updated Syracuse Grades, Pat Narduzzi had a little fun with a grading qeustion during his presser on Monday, throwing out some fake grades when someone asked him how the guys graded out. He also went so far as to point out that everyone has their own grading system. Ostensibly with the goal of downplaying the grades of an outfit such as Pro Football Focus who likely relies on contract workers who may or may not be well-versed in the art of grading a football tape. Certainly the legion of well-trained grad assistants at any Power 5 Program would likely be more accurate graders. They also know exactly what a coach is looking for, but just for kicks and giggles, here is PFF’s own description of how they grade tape.

I’ll admit, it’s a little complicated.

Source: https://www.pff.com/grades


Each player is given a grade of -2 to +2 in 0.5 increments on a given play with 0 generally being the average or “expected” grade. There are a few exceptions as each position group has different rules, but those are the basics. The zero grade is important as most plays feature many players doing their job at a reasonable, or expected, level, so not every player on every play needs to earn a positive or a negative.  

At one end of the scale you have a catastrophic game-ending interception or pick-six from a quarterback, and at the other a perfect deep bomb into a tight window in a critical game situation.

pff player grades

Each position has its own grading rubric so our analysts know how to put a grade on the various expectations for a quarterback on a 10-yard pass beyond the sticks or what the range of grades might look like for a frontside offensive tackle down blocking on a “power” play. 

There is then an adjustment made to the “raw” grades to adjust for what the player is “expected” to earn given his situation on the field. For instance, a player’s grade may be adjusted down slightly if he plays in a situation that is historically more favorable while a player in more unfavorable circumstances may get an adjustment the other way. We collect over 200 fields of data on each play, and that data helps to determine what the baseline, or expectation, is for each player on every play.


PFF employs over 600 full or part-time analysts, but less than 10% of analysts are trained to the level that they can grade plays. Only the top two to three percent of analysts are on the team of “senior analysts” in charge of finalizing each grade after review. Our graders have been training for months, and sometimes years, in order to learn, understand and show mastery of our process that includes our 300-page training manual and video playbook. We have analysts from all walks of life, including former players, coaches and scouts. We don’t care if you played.

Each grade is reviewed at least once, and usually multiple times, using every camera angle available, including All-22 coaches’ tape.


The plus-minus grades are then converted to a 0-100 scale at the game and season level. This makes it easier to compare players across positions relative to their peers, though it doesn’t account for positional value, i.e. which positions are most valuable when trying to predict wins. 

Season-level grades aren’t simply an average of every game-grade a player compiles over a season, as the season grade credits the entire body of work. An 80.0 game grade is not close to one of the best games of all-time, but 16 games of 80.0 grades will equal an outstanding season of consistency and likely one of the better seasons in a given year. A simpler example is a three-touchdown game from a quarterback. We’ve seen many three-touchdown games but doing so in all 16 games would be one of the best seasons of all-time.

There is more, of course, but I don’t want to bore you any more than you already have been bored. Lets see how my uneducatd eye compares to the experts.

PFF Key – I’ve adjusted this slightly based on how I see things stack up vs actual performance on the field.

90 – 100: A

80 – 90: B

70 – 80: C

60 – 70: D

0 – 60: F

Now, most of you guys are probably going to argue with this scale, and that is fine. On to the ratings vs Syracuse

QB – I gave Pickett a B. PFF rated him 65.7 overall, which is equates to a D. His passing was rated at 64.5.

Kenny PickettPitt253669.42156.05.821132.4

RB – I gave the Running Backs a D+. PFF grades:

Carter (2 snaps): 71.1 – C

AJ Davis (12 snaps): 58.5 – F+ (does that even exist?)

Sibley (4 snaps): 66.0 – D

Receivers. I gave them a C. PFF said:

Addison: 68.6 – D+

Wayne: 65.5 – D

Shocky: 63.4 – D

DJ Turner: 60.4 – D-

OL – I gave them a C-. PFF rated just one guy at “C” level – Carter Warren. Great pass blocking grade though so Kudos to Warren on that. As a matter of fact, both starting tackles graded out surprisingly well for pass blocking. Lets hope they keep it up (and also hope that Houy stays healthy).

Tight Ends. I gave them an F. No disagreement from PFF…

As for the defense…

DL was solid. I gave them an A+. PFF was a bit more stringent. Note the two youngsters graded out best. Low snap count’s though.

Linebackers… Again, PFF grading much tougher than I did. I gave them an A. Look at Sirvocea Dennis. Going to be tough to keep him off the field if he keeps playing well. Cam Bright could be on pace for an all-ACC season. Wendell Davis is a pleasant surprise.

Defensive Backs: No surprise that Ford is at the top of the list. What is a surprise is that Marquis Williams is #3. Pinnock I think got penalized for giving up that long TD.

Special teams: Not even going to waste my time posting it.

Hail to Pitt

Michaelangelo Monteleone

70 thoughts on “Jared Wayne and Carter Warren, and Updated Grades

  1. Mike, what I do not quite understand is how Rashad Weaver could grade out from PFF as a C with 2 sacks, 3 TLF’s and 7 tackles and be named the Walter Camp Defensive Player of the Week. Were all the other defensive lineman in the country that much worse?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. So here is the thing. 77.4 is actually quite good when you look at the total population of performances. Also they grave every play. So yea he had a lot of really good ones but maybe he got blocked on 1/3 of his plays…

      Out of all ACC DE’s that played 50% or more snaps sever had the third highest grade. The first was dukes victor dimukeje at 79.2

      In all of Fbs Weaver was ranked 7th. Highest grade was 82.9 (liberty treshaun Clark).


  2. Also, according to Harry Psaros on PSN, PFF graded Kancey a 91.7. Is there a reason for the difference in your PFF numbers and Psaros for Kancey?


    1. According to the stats i see on the screen right now for Kancey

      91.5 overall vs Austin Peay – 20 snaps
      81.9 overall vs Syracuse – 14 snaps
      91.6 overall for season – 34 snaps.

      Don’t ask me why his season grade isn’t an average of the two. That’s where PFF gets weird. Snap count matters though. Kancey clearly making the most of his limited playing time. For reference Keyshon Camp played 38 snaps against syracuse alone.


  3. Big test for the Oline this week – hope they are studying so they all get good grades…🤔

    I’m guessing that Pitt has to score in the thirties to win this game – and likely the high thirties…

    I was skeptical, but I’m glad to see Carter Warren playing better (and glad to see he lost some weight to help him move better…).

    Go Pitt.


  4. So I couldn’t sleep again so I come down stairs to read the POV to try and relax to this article. My mind is blown. KaBoom!

    That’s some tough sledding with a tired mind. What does make sense though is how Mike arrived at his grading as convoluted as it is. My grading is based on following the bouncing ball and a lousy memory. Good job Mike.


  5. It would be interesting to see what grades they gave Louisville in their game against Miami.For that matter it would be interesting how all the other ACC teams graded out last week.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Team Grades last week:

      Maimi overall 66.1, off 67.9, Def 54.1
      L’ville overall 69.9, off 73.9, Def 55.1

      So there are lies, statistics and damn lies. By this measure You’d think Louisville was the winning team. And maybe they were more consistent overall, but clearly the plays where they lost, they lost bigtime.

      For ref: Pitt graded at 73.6 overall, 63.8 offense, 79.3 defense.

      But hey i’m not here to defend PFF. Just to add the grades to the mix of things we as keyboard warriors get to discuss 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I know for a fact that PFF has grades for every NFL player in less than 24 hours after the game is played. How is that possible? Same for college!

    How do they really know what defense is called? What blocking assignments were called?

    This entire country depends on analyses by others, and then accepts it or rejects it depending on whether it fits their mindset

    Liked by 4 people

    1. But often ones mindset is formed via experiences and evidence that is consistent over time. Easier to change mindset on someone young or more receptive and open to listening.

      Analysis should come with proper context. How you use the data and draw conclusions is very important. Improper usage could result in flawed take aways.

      I like the data and analysis because it helps connect the dots and create a better picture. Yes subject to interpretation but valuable nonetheless.


  7. Dion – As far as the soccer rankings. Temper your enthusiasm. There are a few conferences not playing so that also has to do with the ranking. It is great for those that care about soccer. Herman hired men’s coach and Luke hired the women’s. I’m not a fan of the sport.


    1. But its the “true” football. Can you image back when they were deciding to name our sport in the US, one guy probably said “Well, Let’s see, the center hands the ball back to the quarterback who either hands the ball to another back or throws the ball using his hands to a receiver who catches the ball in his hands. We’ll call it handball! But wait, that name is already taken.” Then some other guy pipes up and says, “On some few occasions during the game a player who seldom does anything else comes in and kicks the ball with his foot. Let’s call it football!” 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    1. But Gordon, if you don’t care about the uni’s, I sure hope you at least care a lot about the color of the AD’s blouse. Now that is important! 🙂


      1. She looks like a 🍌 dressed in yellow.

        She needs to dress in blue

        Maybe I’ll create a go fund me for a new wardrobe.


          1. Maybe, Tex, you’d be more interested in a blog that my wife’s hairdresser, Valentino, has with some of his guy friends (not that there’s anything wrong with that). They critique the fashions of public figures, their makeup and hairdo (not that there’s anything wrong with that). They give it two snaps up and say fab-bul-ous when they like something. On weekends they get together and drink wine coolers and bake bread. Sometimes they swap fabric swatches, look at curtains or drapes (I never know which one is which) or go antiquing. I think you’ll have a gay old time with their site (not that there’s anything wrong with that).


  8. BTW, DB Erick Hallett seems to be getting on the field a lot. He was a 3-star 5.6 from Cypress, Texas. Not exactly a hotbed for Pitt recruiting.

    His best offers, besides Pitt, were from Army, Washington State, Tulane, and Houston…

    Go Pitt.


    1. Yes. Not playing badly either. I think our safeties will be solid and even above average after ford and Hamlin move on. Player evaluation wins again!

      Liked by 2 people

  9. Re: Hallett. Every so often Pitt grabs a kid from Cy Fair H S. I think Wanny got a QB from there that had a career as a C&W singer in later life.


    1. Unfortunately, Wanny had a better eye for CW singers than for QBs — but he sure knew his running backs…

      I could be mis-remembering, but seems to me that Coach Bates had some connections in Texas and was part of the reason for Hallett coming to Pitt.

      Go Pitt.


  10. Statistics are fine, but the most important statistic is wins and losses. This season, we are not sure whether or not we will even get the games in let alone reach such lofty goals as 9 or 10 wins. If we are fortunate enough to get to play ND, and if they come back weakened and with no depth, Pitt could get a win, but would it mean the same as if Pitt played them to start the season?

    Apparently, there is no rule that dictates how many players must test positive for COVID before cancelling a game (maybe one if it is the QB). If a team fails to protect its players, or if a lack of team discipline produces many positives, should a game be postponed or should it be forfeited? This year really validates the old coaches line that a team should take its opponents and season one game at a time.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think it is by position group. Each conference can decide on a minimum number of position players be available to have a “SAFE” game. For ex., ACC could decide 8 is “Safe” for OL. If a team usually has 15 OL then 7 could be positive or in contact tracing.


  11. As far as unis, I must admit that the cheerleader unis are far more important. I don’t really care about the football unis unless they are so ugly as to spoil my lunch..


  12. Cheerleader uniforms are far more important but these alternatives will get talked about. And Pitt needs all the good press possible. I don’t believe the press comprised by people my age and above will say nice things. Just a reflection of how pitt makes poor decisions and try’s then to spin it back in your face. And fans will vote with their pocketbooks. I doubt they will be bought in numbers. Players don’t play better because they think their uniforms are cool.

    And it’s good that soccer at Pitt is doing well. I told y’all nearly three years ago to watch out for the men’s team. Both men and women play in the toughest conference for soccer.

    So how did the men go from a team ranked outside the top 100 to one in the top 5.

    They hired the right coach
    That coach pulled in top recruiting classes


    Hence football has no prayer until those things happen


    1. And he doesn’t use excuses on why pitt can’t compete, get ranked and win.

      Coach Jays recruiting classes over the past three years have all been top 15. As high as number 6, I believe one year.

      Pitt does play on campus but the facility is average although they have made some nice upgrades recently.

      There is little soccer talent in the Pittsburgh area

      Pitt has no soccer tradition

      Pitt doesn’t have a solid record of sending players to the pros

      Yet Coach reels in top recruits that fit his system. And yes he has a system and the team has an identity. Coach knows how to win.

      Tell me why then pitt football struggles to recruit

      Pitts volleyball coach is in a very similar situation. He wins. He’s now getting good classes.

      So you have my answer.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Getting Coach Jay Vidovich to come to Pitt for soccer would be similar to having Urban Meyer come to Pitt for football. I remember when Coach V. was hired looking at his resume and wondering how long he’d be at Pitt until a big-time soccer school needed a coach…

        While at WF, this guy was ACC Coach of the year several times and won a National Championship.

        He seemed to fall into Pitt’s lap after he left Wake to coach a pro team and for whatever reason only stayed in that job for one year.

        So okay, there are a couple of football coaches who have the name to bring in a bunch of big recruits at Pitt…

        Go Pitt.


  13. The main consideration with football uniforms is do they support the brand and tradition, and do they put forth an image that is beneficial for recruiting. Most POVers love the recent uniform upgrades (present version under discussion excluded). But remember, most of us are old farts that have no real flair for design and color. So are we even in a position to judge?


    1. Pitt overthought the design. You want to get noticed on TV in a good way

      They would have been better to go with the black and gold of the Steelers. A color rush for Pitt.

      But no Pitt out thinked themselves and got cute. The details on that uniform go over most peoples heads. If you have to take time to explain, you’ve already lost.


  14. That’s why there is a video explaining every last detail on the uni’s, you know the ones? The ones PITT had NO input in designing. People lose their credibility when they complain about every little last thing.


    1. You shouldn’t need a video. Who is going to watch that thing. Not the casual fan. Only die hard blow farts maybe. Pitt fails at basic marketing 101. Nobody is going to buy something hideous and complicated. So they also fail at business 101.


      1. They sold out of the sweatshirts in two days on several sites, Dicks included. Only odd sizes left. I often agree with you on things Tex, but you are off the mark here. They are likely trying to appeal to Pittsburghers who ARE the casual or even non fans. They can relate better to Pittsburgh centric things like US Steel than they can to our sweet blue and yellow uniforms. The players and RECRUITS love this kind of stuff. And like them or not, they are generating lots of conversation, which by itself is great marketing. And none of this has anything to do with the Yellow Blouse.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. This is what I would have done Ike and Pitt would have made millions

      Do a black and gold color rush like the Stillers. Place script Pitt on only one side of the helmet. You can use the new pantherhead as a decal on the jersey. I’d also place H2P on the jersey sleeve. I’d also eliminate the Cathedral numbering and go with traditional block.

      I’d also release when they had fans in the stands. Maybe homecoming game. Or the Domer game

      No video

      That’s how correct marketing is done.

      Liked by 1 person

    3. Pitt had every input regarding vetting, validation and approval. They skipped over the first two and approved instead of denying.

      Ike – pitt gives me so much material to criticize. You don’t see me criticizing men’s soccer do you. Or pointing out obvious flaws with any other school besides the culture and coverup at certain schools. Most schools are far better run than Pitt.

      Pitt just happens to step in their own crap nearly every day. And part of that is culture. And the other is leadership.

      As an alum, the little things do count. Like competent leaders, transparency, not sending me a letter requesting I donate a minimum of $100. Engaging me a bit more for my athletic gifting

      If Pitt fails on these little things, how can they get any big thing right?


    4. The video makes the whole thing dumber. I am to believe a guy get a video of the Cathedral and connects it to the steel heritage?
      Ugly uniforms with a fake back story.


      1. No one is suggesting you can’t find the uniforms ugly K-Man. Myself? I’m indifferent about them right now. The “back story” I think explains a lot. To each their own.

        I would like to have a poll here at the POV on who spoke up against the fuss aimed at PITT fans wanting to go back to the PITT script, saying uniforms don’t matter? All of a sudden now, uniforms are a big deal? Like a live fish thrown on the dock. Flip flopping around all confused.


  15. So there are lies, statistics and damn lies as Mike points out. I will add that there a lies, statistics, damn lies and koolaid. We all like to pull for the troops emotionally. The grading takes the emotional koolaid out of the recipe.

    Stated differently, there has been much conversation about drops, yet when Pickett tossed a very high ball over the middle and Addison short armed it just a skoach, it wasn’t a drop. It was a poor pass given the time and location. True, he may have gotten his fingertip on the ball, but not one that I thought was catchable, at all. Had he caught it, it would have been a terrific catch however. The fact that Bostik opined that it should have been caught was him protecting the qb rep. Same with him saying pickett made an nfl toss on the touchdown. I didnt see him thread the ball in between a tightly covered receiver. I saw a wide open receiver who caught a ball that was thrown in the right spot. Many qb’s in high school and college can and do make that throw. Just my 3 cents(inflation).

    I like the emotionless grading. Grading is a good barometer and you can move a couple of points either way depending on your koolaid flavoring for defense or offense. That said, it shouldn’t be a 10 point swing.


    1. Not kook-aid Huff, just someones opinion that doesn’t have a jaded opinion before the ball was even thrown. That pass was put right where it needed to be. imo.

      As far as these unis go, again, if someone doesn’t like them so be it, they are entitled. But why take it so much further and blame people for your opinion? Especially when the opinion is in the minority with the players who will wear them.

      I think by now we have established who likes who and what about PITT football. Labeling people isn’t fair, I’ve never referred to myself as a kool-aid drinker but some of you have labeled yourselves as a “realist” which is really funny to me. A “realist” should be able to see the ball to Addison was very catch-able. 🙂


      1. My observation (not yours or anyone elses) was that it was not cut and dry, easily catchable, in real speed. My opinion isn’t jaded at all, especially before a throw is even attempted as you suggest. At the snap, I dont type that was a crappy throw, so I am not sure where you get off saying such things and strict proof otherwise is demanded.

        Same with uni’s. I don’t like. I don’t think they represent the brand. I don”t think people will buy large quantities to help the bottom line. I never said the players don’t like them. They like everything given to them as free. I don’t understand why you say my opinion is in the minority with the players who will wear them? Did you ask every player? Have you ever heard of a player that was given something new who said, these suck? That’s the reality. Did the dinocat wearers say the unis sucked? NO!! Any other player’s say it, NO! Good grief man! The only person I blame for my opinion is me, when it is off. 35 years of mediocrity……

        I haven’t labeled anyone here. Me, I’m having a grape koolaid as I type. The only point that I was making is that raw stats and metrics often tell a different story from what we saw or heard from our local broadcasters, coaches, fans. It’s a way to reign in false enthusiasm ala Dairy College. There’s not a player I dislike at all on the team. In fact, I don’t think that any player goes out there and tries to miss a block, or a throw or anything, sio I remain confused with your accusations.


  16. I see the one-time unis had taken precedent over the grading of FB players. Interesting! Does PFF have any opinion of the unis?

    I am turned by al of the (what in my opinion) is over-analysis. From wikipedia ….(pay close attention to the last 3 paragraphs)

    Raw QBR is calculated as the following:

    {\displaystyle RawQBR=g({\frac {AdjustedEPA}{ActionPlays}})}{\displaystyle RawQBR=g({\frac {AdjustedEPA}{ActionPlays}})},

    where g() is a function that scales from 0-100, where 50 is average. Total QBR is the raw QBR adjusted for the strength of the opponent.

    EPA is calculated based on the down, distance, and the yard line at snap, with each combination having its own point value. The point values are the average net point advantage the team on offense can expect given the particular down, distance, and field position. For example, a 1st and goal chance on the opponent’s’ 1 yard line heavily favors the offense, yielding a positive point value. On the other hand, a 3rd and 9 on the team’s own 3 yard line is heavily negative because it drastically favors the opponent.

    The value of each play’s outcome is measured by the snap-to-snap change in expected points. This is called Expected Points Added. The Expected Points Added (or lost) in each play are divided among the contributing players on the field based on the role of each player and the type of play. Deeper throws give a higher share of credit to the QB, while screen passes give relatively less credit to the QB and more to the receiver.

    Plays that occur in “trash time” are discounted by as much as 30%. Trash time is measured based on the leverage of each play which is primarily a function of score, time, and field position. Important, critical plays that are likely to change the outcome have high leverage, while plays that occur after the game has largely been already decided have low leverage. QBR discounts low leverage plays, but does not boost credit for “clutch” plays.

    After each play’s Expected Points Added is adjusted for difficulty, division of credit, and trash time, it is averaged on a per play basis. This average is further adjusted to account for the strength of opponent. Performance against a stronger defense that tends to allow low adjusted EPA per play is adjusted upwards while performance against a weaker defense is adjusted downwards. The degree of adjustment is in direct proportion to the strength of the opponent.

    Lastly, the resulting adjusted EPA per play is transformed to a 0 to 100 scale, where 50 is average. The result can be thought of as a percentile. For example, a QBR of 80 means that the QB’s performance is better than 80% of the game performances by QB’s since 2006. A game QBR of 80 would also mean that, given that QB’s performance, his team would be expected to win that game on average 80% of the time.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Ohio State reported a loss so far in 2021 of over $100 million. Very similar to what Whisky projected two months ago.

    Massive cuts and eliminations are planned but no varsity programs will be cut…yet. And all scholies will be honored.

    Why does Pitt not report these things as well. Pitts loss is probably closer to $20-$30 million. What actions do they plan to take? How will that impact sports at Pitt.


    1. Should have dropped Nike or had them go back to the drawing board. If I wanted to look at coal, I’d get the piece out of my stocking from last Christmas.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. With 13 in quarantine, they have a positive rate well above the 5 percent threshold.

    Pitt is under 1 percent. But all that can change if you drop your guard or get infected by another team that doesn’t take health protocols seriously or just improperly executes them.

    I find it funny they are called student athletes in the article.


    1. Well Tex, they could be called what they actually are which is athlete students, or, on-line athlete students. Just my 3 cents, but I have yet to see an athlete that has indicated they attend actual class. Not just from Pitt but from other universities as well.

      So many ethical dilemma’s in the online world. They have a system called proctorio which I used for some of my classes for testing, but the students have figured a way around it. Sad….but when the door is left open for cupcakes, batter up! That was kind of a bad baking joke.

      The ohio state qb was at a georgia training camp while school was in session in columbus, so who knows how those classes went. I found it odd, and a slap in the face to the NCAA and football administrators that the kid went back to a place and worked out with the team he left due to sensitized “racial slurs” and not feeling comfortable, and received an immediate waiver to play in ohio.Everybody is manipulating everybody in college sports.


  19. I don’t care for the gray uniforms and acknowledge that its possible I am not in touch with what the kkkkids and recruits like. Im 60 and getting more curmudgeonly by the day.

    That said, I love the “new” regular uniforms and know that I am not alone. The media loves them and many of the kids do as well based on what they say and tweet. They pop and are distinctive. They don’t need to be messed with for quite a while. Even the faculty and administration agreed and have changed the offical school colors… much to the chagrin of others.

    I get why these things are done, but I don’t like it. Let Maryland and Oregon mess with their brand.


    1. They do it to sell jerseys. But they have recent new colors now so why so soon to release an alternate. Then they release it with no fans in the stands. Plain stupid. So it’s not the look that is infuriating, it’s the process and rollout. What is Pitt thinking.

      Just because players like it, doesn’t mean it should be done. Are the players running the asylum.


  20. Interesting… I don’t like the alternate uniforms. I didn’t care for the new Panther head logo back when it was released. But, I have to admit, I really like the way the new Panther head logo looks in grey and black. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised by that. I like ketchup, tomato sauce and tomato soup, but I don’t like tomato on my sandwiches or in my salads.


    1. James… try a German Johnson heirloom pink tomato- that will change your mind….. is Steve-o calling the shots on the United- zoots at PITT


  21. Getting back to the game this weekend below are links to Louisville’s Blog Cardinal Chronical where they breakdown Pitt’s Offense and Defense. I don’t agree with a couple of their thoughts but all in all its a pretty fair analysis. What’s your thoughts?

    First Pitt’s Offense:



  22. My God, alternative uniforms are to be fun for the fans and players as well as make money. That’s it. It is a cool tribute to Pittsburgh. Enjoy it.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. I would rather they not use them but don’t get the big fuss about them. In my world it’s not my way or the highway when it comes to non issues like this. Constantly complaining on the other hand? So the Addison ball was uncatchable. So be it.


Comments are closed.