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Thread: Russ Brandon and Analytics

  1. #1
    What this generation tolerates, the next generation will embrace X-Era's Avatar
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    Russ Brandon and Analytics

    Many of us wanted Russ fired.

    But if you think about it he has done a great job.

    He's a business man. And this is a business. It is not philanthropy.

    To be a great business man you minimize expense while maximizing profits.

    When we say "The Bills will do just enough to give us hope so that we buy tickets next year" you are basically telling Russ he's doing an awesome job...

    Think about it. Through minimal new investment he has kept or even gained ticket sales. He minimized expense while maximizing profit.

    That sounds bad to fans. And on the surface it is. If, and only if, the investments he makes don't add up to winning.

    Which is where I like it when Russ says he wants to evaluate the evaluators.

    Theoretically, that means being able to quanitfy the investment the team has made into players and the profit it made the team. It's puts a number on how well Nix's gut feel works.

    Mario Williams seems like a waste of money. It seems like 100 mill spent on a guy who doesn't earn it on the field. That seems very true. But the total profit of the team is money earned. To a business man profit is the measure of success.

    Do the Bills make money even when they don't win? Yes. It's a critical point. Signing Mario Williams may make more fans buy tickets just because they want to see him play. Does the extra profit from more ticket sales cover the under performance on the field? Maybe. Analytics may show that even though he's expensive for his level of play, the additional profits make it a smart move. Like Coastal points out he makes $863,492 per sack. But what if he has made the team $900,000 per sack in additional profit in ticket sales, moving a game to Thursday night, etc...?

    We make a splash and sign Mario Williams and the media starts talking about us. And then people are interested in watching the Bills play... and then we get a Thursday night game because of it. Does that give us extra profit? Yes.

    The point is that there is a tangible profit to making big moves and it can make seemingly bad moves on the field good moves overall.

    If spending 100 mill over 6 years on Mario Williams brings in 102 mill over that 6 years in new profit was it a success? But again, minimizing expense creeps in. What Russ really wants is to bring in 102 of new profit by investing 50 mill... or as little as possible.

    That's where he hopes to use analytics. He wants to evaluate the evaluators. If Nix gets productive starter play out of all 7 draft picks he gets starter level value out of rookie contract pay. That's maximizing profit while minimizing expense. If Nix blows it and they get no starters out of a draft class they wasted rookie level salary... Or did they? The amount of money "lost" by not getting a starter out of the rookie level salary is actually low. Where you really mess up is if you pay huge money to a guy that ends up being benched or plays like a backup... Fitz.

    My take is this. Russ will use analytics to find the most inexpensive players to get wins. We all wonder if that will make us stink. If it does, he must them use the analytics again to change the evaluators or to change the level of investment to get wins. But, this does not mean we won't pay for big name players. And to me the reason is that signing big namer's also makes us money through becoming relevant and garnering attention.

    Profit is the name of the game. Wins will drive profit. Making big splashes will drive profit. Using analytics will tell you if you are getting the most profit from your investments. And it will also tell you when your evaluators aren't doing there jobs. It's data to drive the team to business success which may or may not also drive the team to winning on the field.
    Last edited by X-Era; 01-05-2013 at 10:29 AM.

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  3. #2
    Legendary Zoner coastal's Avatar
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    Re: Russ Brandon and Analytics


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