Geno shares one great trait with another Seahawks QB
Now, EPA/play isn’t a complete measure of a QB’s value, either. EPA/play doesn’t account for the game clock as a dynamic factor, nor does it account for any sort of context relating to assignment or teammate error. It devalues the run game as a result because it can’t account for the effect running the clock down has on a game.
Of course, reducing a complex idea like a QB’s relative performance in a football game down to a single number is a fool’s errand — even proprietary measures like ESPN’s Total QBR and Pro Football Focus’s player grading system are often mocked by fans and players alike.
After all, different people see different things when they watch film, and it’s all too easy for people to see the same 7-yard slant as a smorgasbord of different praises and indictments, all lobbed toward different players who may or may not have had anything to do with the play itself.
So, what can we say definitively about Geno Smith from a film perspective? Well, between the stats and the film, I think it’s pretty reasonable to say that he’s an accurate QB with a good sense of tempo. He uses the middle of the field better than any Seahawks QB since Matt Hasselbeck, and he operates well on the move.
All of these things are exactly what you want from a modern QB in a system derived from the Mike Shanahan coaching tree, which the Seahawks’ system is (Waldron → McVay → K. Shanahan → M. Shanahan). They’re not necessarily superstar QB traits, though, and one thing we have yet to see from Geno is a consistent ability to hit the home run ball downfield.
If I had to compare Smith to another QB from years past, the first name that comes to mind is Jeff Garcia; he’s a good field general, plays within his offense as well as anyone in football, and doesn’t make the kinds of mistakes that kill offensive momentum very often.