Late in May, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Alex Smith caused a stir with the following comments in response to Cam Newton’s stellar rookie year:
“This is the honest truth: I could absolutely care less on yards per game,” Smith said Wednesday, via the San Francisco Chronicle. “I think that’s a totally overblown stat. Because if you’re losing games in the second half, guess what? You’re like the Carolina Panthers and you’re going no-huddle the entire second half and, yeah, Cam Newton threw for a lot of 300-yard games, that’s great. You’re not winning, though.”
Smith chose to walk back those statements earlier this week. From NFL.com:
“Obviously I got carried away there” Smith told Cam Inman of the San Jose Mercury News.
“I was going after more of the passing-yards statistic and I don’t really believe there’s a great correlation to winning in the NFL,” Smith said. “I don’t. I don’t buy it. If you’re looking for a statistic that has a better correlation to winning, it’s probably yards-per-attempt.”
The stat Smith continues to worry most about is in the win-loss column.
“For me it’s about winning games,” Smith said. “I’m trying to score more points than the other team. I don’t really care how we do it. … That’s our philosophy: We’ve got a lot of ways to get it done. I don’t really care how many yards I throw for, as long as we score more points than the guys we’re playing.”
Regardless of whether or not you agree with Alex Smith’s views on passing statistics, he is right about one thing – Wins&Losses is what matter most at the end of the day.