So far Ben McAdoo’s first season as an NFL head coach is going pretty well. The New York Giants improved to 5-3 with a third straight win and moved up to the top of the list of the NFC wild card contenders.
So McAdoo has reason to feel pretty confident in his methods and he’s making it clear that those methods do not include statistics or analytics. He revealed this team philosophy a couple days before a Week 9 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles.
“We say it all the time: Stats are for losers,” McAdoo said when asked about the Giants’ low sack total, via Newsday. “We need to make the quarterback uncomfortable. We need to make him move, make him chatter his feet, make him early or late with the throws. Numbers are numbers.”
He doubled down on this line of thought Monday with a veiled shot at analytics websites like Pro Football Focus and Football Outsiders:
McAdoo said they don't use websites to evaluate young players. Said they rely on their eyes.— Patricia Traina (@Patricia_Traina) November 7, 2016
Got it. So:
- Stats are for losers.
- Websites are for losers.
But let’s not ignore the fact that McAdoo also uses stats plenty. As pointed out by Daily Norseman’s Arif Hasan, the Giants coach cites metrics all the time to find what the team is doing well and where it can improve.
“Third down was improved. We were 28 percent there,” McAdoo told reporters after a Week 6 win against the Baltimore Ravens. “Offensively, what we did well, we overcame a slow start. We were 3-for-3 on fourth down, which was huge in the ballgame.”
That might sound like loser talk, but the Giants’ resurgence on defense and suddenly drama-free rhythm on offense means McAdoo has some reason to believe in his methods.