Eifert vs Ertz
Second Round Stats
Analyzing the NFL Draft Through Statistics and Film Study
Tyler Eifert vs. Zach Ertz: A Metrics Breakdown
Posted on February 12, 2013
Everyone wants the next Rob Gronkowski or Jimmy Graham, itís en vogue in the NFL right now. To that point, Iíve come across two distinct groups while perusing the message boards, those who think Tyler Eifert is the best TE and those who believe itís Zach Ertz. Each group tends to believe their choice is the next best TE. So instead of lumping Eifert and Ertz in with a bunch of other tight ends for comparisons, Iíve decided to do a head to head comparison. Each has their own pros and cons, you get to decide who you believe is the better choice.
For this study, I only dealt with receptions and passes, no blocking. As was true with the wide receivers, I charted a variety of factors including yards after the catch and where they were lined up. For this study, I have added yards after first contact to get a feel for the strength of these TEs. Letís compare!
Where Did They Catch the Ball?
This is only where they caught the ball, excluding YAC. Last year I worked up some of Coby Fleenerís stats, so Iíll be comparing them.
- Despite Ertz and Fleener playing in the same offense, we actually see different distributions of completions. Ertzís are weighted more heavily towards shorter passes, with 68% of his passes coming within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage.
- Eifertís distribution resembles Fleenerís much more closely. They both have a large amount of receptions within the 1-5 yard range then a large amount of receptions within the 11-20 range. I believe this shows an aptitude for catch both dump off passes and big gaining intermediate receptions.
- Neither is the deep threat that Fleener was. Almost 17% of Fleenerís receptions were past 20 yards. Eifert had nearly half of that and Ertz only reached 12%.
Where Did Their Yardage Come From?
(For this I charted yards after contact, which means as soon as a defender contacted the TEs, I noted it)
- Eifert in general caught the ball slightly further down the field, 10.4 yards to 9.64 yards for Ertz.
- Both Ertz and Eifert had similar total yards after the catch (before contact + after first contact) at 3.94 yards and 3.6 respectively. They came in different manners though.
- The majority of Ertzí yards after the catch came before contact, with only 1.24 yards after first contact on average. Eifertís was much more divided with 1.96 yards coming after contact.
- Now this doesnít seem like a big difference, but I believe this is a larger indicator for projection into the NFL. We see Eifert with more effort and strength after the catch compared to Ertz. The players wonít get smaller in the NFL, so the stronger the better.
How Do They Compare in Other Aspects?
- We have to examine drops. This is probably the most glaring difference. Ertz had almost double the drops of Eifert at a drop rate of 10.68% to only 5.26% for Eifert. That drop rate would give him the second best hands out of this wide receiver class behind only Keenan Allen. Impressive for a TE.
- Both of their catches came from very similar pre-snap alignments. Neither one has more experience or an advantage in a particular alignment. Anyone who tells you one has more experience from the outside or slot is misinformed.
Both of them converted a similar amount of third downs. From my sample, 64% of both of their passes were caught for 1st downs. I also calculated whether they picked up their first downs through the air or after the catch and the numbers were nearly identical. No distinguishing.
Both tight ends have their own positives and negatives. Eifert has better hands and more power after the catch. Ertz has better overall yards after the catch and is a bigger deep threat than Eifert. There are things to like and dislike about each prospect. When making your evaluation based on these stats, you have to first figure out whatís more important to you in a TE. Do you want a guy who is more of a potential game breaker, a guy who is solid after the catch with good hands. Do you value power or speed more? These are the things that will define your evaluation.
Many scouting sites will tell you there is a right and a wrong answer. There probably is. However, I donít know it and no one will for a year or two. Hopefully though, will these statistics, you can be that much closer to figuring out the right answer for yourself.
Before the charts, if youíve liked this, you can follow me at . I do work pretty much every day breaking down prospects and Iíll be tweeting out interesting stats that I come across , future articles/breakdowns (CBs are most likely next), or let you know when I post new things (Tavon Austin individual breakdown) . Thanks a lot!
Iím going to put up two more charts just to give you a feel for their yardage by down and quarter.
Not gonna lie, I'm drunk and just saw this, so i didn't read it. I hope this is some good stuff, lol
Screw drafting a TE first. The last time this happened I threw a fit because I wanted us to move up to grab Joe Staley and we ended up with Greg Olsen, I'll be even more livid this time if we make that mistake this time. Having said that, Ertz all the way.
I think Emery will go TE shopping in FA and even if he's unsuccessful I'd be shocked if he used his first on a TE with outstanding needs on the OL and at LB and with as many good prospects as there are at those spots.