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Marcus Mariota was the seventh most accurate deep passer of 2018

Like the season before, Mariota’s downfield accuracy was fantastic.

NFL: Tennessee Titans at New York Giants Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

You may recall that I did an article on Marcus Mariota’s deep accuracy earlier this year. This detailed that Mariota’s deep accuracy looked solid, but without the completion of the rest of my charting the findings were cryptic.

Well, with the 2018-19 Deep Ball Project out, the puzzle is complete. Mariota was the seventh most accurate downfield passer on the year, with a deep accuracy percentage of 53.57%. For more on that, let’s take a look at the chart below to see how he compares in accuracy percentage with the other 34 passers that were charted.

Only Andrew Luck, Russell Wilson, Matt Ryan, Baker Mayfield, Patrick Mahomes and Philip Rivers finished with higher deep accuracy percentages than Mariota. Not a bad deal considering all of them took almost or more than twice as many deep shots. Fellow 2015 draft classmate Jameis Winston finished in dead last in deep accuracy with a percentage of 29.41%.

Next, let’s go to Mariota’s individual chart to look at his percentages in each individual category:

Mariota finished in the top five in accuracy percentage in five categories: Throws of 31-35 yards, throws of 41+ yards, throws to the middle, throws inside a clean pocket, and throws into a tight window.

Now, you’re probably wondering how those numbers compare to the previous season. The distances measured were modified so the number comparisons would be meaningless, but what we can look at is how Mariota compared throwing in a clean pocket, under pressure, and into open/tight windows. And consider that throws of 16-20 air yards are not in the equation for the 2018-19 edition, whereas they were in the 2017-18 edition.

Clean Pocket: In 2017, Mariota’s deep accuracy throwing into clean pockets was 60.8%, which ranked sixth. While his accuracy for this year’s edition was slightly lower (60.5%), he finished one spot higher, ranking fifth.

Pressure: This is where Mariota was a disappointment in comparison to the previous season. His deep accuracy against pressure was the second highest in 2017 (71.4%), whereas he had a 37.5% accuracy percentage in 2018, finishing 20th out of 35 QBs.

Open Window: This is another area where it’s clear the nerve issues Mariota had in his throwing hand affected his accuracy. His open window accuracy (where the receiver has ample separation) was third in 2017 (92.3%), whereas it was shockingly 28th in 2018 (58.33%). It’s not good to say the least.

Tight Window: Mariota’s accuracy into tight windows remained excellent in 2018. In 2017 it was fifth (50.7%), while it was tied for second in 2018 (50.0%).

For the remainder of the article we will take a look at the splits in accuracy percentage, but you can check out more on the rest of the individual statistics (such as Accurate Incompletions) here. Now, let’s take a look at Mariota’s rankings on the accuracy splits.

Throws of 21-25 Yards:

Not top five.

Throws of 26-30 Yards:

Not top five.

Throws of 31-35 Yards:

Ayeeeeeeeeee top five!

Throws of 36-40 Yards:

Not top five, but just barely avoided the bottom five!

Throws of 41+ Yards:

Back in the top five!

Throws to the Left of the Field:

Guess what, not top five.

Throws to the Middle of the Field:

Top five, second place!

Throws to the Right of the Field:


Accuracy Throwing into Clean Pockets:

Tied for top five.

Accuracy Under Pressure:

No top five for you!

Accuracy Throwing into Open Windows:

Evif pot ton.

You claimed Mariota did NOT finish in the top five in accuracy to tight windows. The lie detector determined that was a lie.

So in spite of pretty pedestrian statistics, Mariota’s deep accuracy was again excellent in 2018. That is an impressive feat considering the setbacks he had to deal with the entire season, and there’s little doubt in my mind that he can be even better with a healthy hand.

For any further questions, tweet to me @Brickwallblitz or place your thoughts in the comment section below!