NFL Teams Are Analyzing Everything From The Salary Cap To Fan Loyalty

Carl Bialik: Did you know the history of analytics in the NFL before you joined the league?Paraag Marathe: I definitely did. When I came into the league in 2001, analytics was certainly more prevalent in baseball. It was just starting to become prevalent in basketball. The NFL was sort of the latest adopter. You see it a lot more now. Unlike baseball, where it’s all around player evaluation, the NFL is more complicated. It’s much more of a team sport, with much more covariance between positions. Is a running back’s success due to his ability to break away, or his line’s ability to run-block, or his quarterback’s ability to pass, which makes the run easier?But the NFL also has two other areas where analytics plays a big role. The first is game management: How you manage the clock, when to go on fourth down, the run/pass play selection, those sorts of things. The second is the salary cap. With the advent of the salary cap in 1994, and where I made my mark with the 49ers and the NFL, is managing the salary cap much more analytically, similar to how a portfolio manager would manage a stock portfolio, managing risk.CB: I’ve read that you’ve applied analytics to fans. How does that work and what have you learned about what they want?PM: Oh yeah, yeah, absolutely. And it’s not just what they want, as in, what are their desires when they come to stadium, in terms of what they want to consume — content, beverages, coming closer to the game — but also the lifetime value of a fan. When you capture a fan’s loyalty, someone who becomes a fan at an early age, they will stay there. There’s a lot of loyalty. For professional teams 20 years ago, maybe as recently as 15 years ago, the vice president of marketing was all around what’s the cheerleader uniform and what’s the rallying cry for team. Now it’s all around what’s the content for the website, what’s the lifetime value of a fan, and so on. It’s much, much more analytical.CB: How did you first connect with Bill Walsh?PM: I was working at a consulting company, Bain and Co., on a bunch of sports-related projects. Bill Walsh and Terry Donahue were looking at drafts — not the players themselves, but draft slots. Is there a better algorithm, a better way to do the draft chart? It was a three-month project. I was the junior guy on the team. We sort of hit it off, and they asked me to come on board full-time.CB: How often, while you’ve been on the job, have people asked you if you’ve played football? How did you answer?PM: They either asked me, or they just assumed I didn’t. If they did ask me, I didn’t play college football, and I barely played high school football. I played baseball growing up, mostly. If you’re asking, did I feel like an outsider from the beginning when I started, I certainly did, but times have changed, and you earn respect with the work you do.CB: What was the status of analytics at the 49ers when you arrived?PM: It was a one-man show. To be fair, I never really did that much. It wasn’t so much on evaluating player talent on the field. It was a lot on the salary cap and how to be more efficient on managing the cap.CB: How about now?PM: We’ve got four or five folks, whether helping scouts better evaluate players, helping coaches, as well as the salary cap.CB: Has the whole organization bought into analytics?PM: Yeah, I’d like to think so. It’s definitely more accepted around the league. The Ravens just hired a head of their analytics department in 2012. You see it all across the board now. Clubs are trying to look for any competitive advantage they can. It’s not just, spend $1 more than the next team, it’s, what’s every competitive advantage you can squeeze out of this product?CB: Is it tough to find good people, with so many teams hiring?PM: No, I wouldn’t say that. There are so many good analysts across traditional industries, and sports is still such a sexy field, that there is no shortage of good talent. There are a lot of people who want to work in sports. Just go to the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference every year.CB: How important is it to be able to communicate the findings to people who aren’t technical?PM: At the end of the day, it boils down to this. The information is only as good as it is to the person receiving it. I’ll take a C+ piece of analysis communicated perfectly over an A+ piece of analysis that’s not communicated well. Only a small portion of the work is the analytics itself. The rest is putting it in a practical format so the salary-cap person and the coach can appreciate it and use it. Instead of trying to go overboard with analytics, focus on the practical: Focus on the things that have the highest impact on your organization.CB: Because of the importance of retaining a competitive advantage, do you generally not disclose specifically what you’re looking at, and what you’re finding?PM: Generally speaking, we don’t really talk about a lot of those things. But it’s not just analytics. In nutrition, sleep studies, and psychological aspects, people are looking for advantages every place they can.CB: Can you detect the spread of analytics in the league from how hard it is to get certain players in the draft, or from tactics of opponents?PM: It’s mostly through conversations. I’ve been in the league now 14 years, and just having conversations with people in every level, I’m starting to see changes. Not starting to see — there’s been a lot of changes.CB: Is analytics work being done within teams better than the work done outside it?PM: Yes and no. That’s a tough question to answer. There are only 32 teams and there are seven billion people. There’s a lot of stuff that’s not even published that’s probably really good. The difference between what’s happening with teams and what’s happening in the ether, is what’s out there is pretty theoretical, whereas what teams do has to be pretty actionable. The most actionable things are being done in clubs, but I’m sure there are some excellent things being done out there.CB: Which analytics publications do you read?PM: Football Outsiders, Pro Football Focus, different blogs, even you guys do some awesome stuff. All the stuff that’s done is really good.CB: You said in 2005 that even at 45 or 50, you’ll never be a football guy. Do you still feel that way?PM: That was almost 10 years ago. What I meant is, not having played or coached the game, it’s just different. I don’t understand the nuances of the Xs and Os, nor do I try to, in terms of schemes and things like that. There’s no point in me trying really hard to be average at something. It’s important to focus on the things I know I can do well, like manage the salary cap. I won’t be a coach or GM, nor do I aspire to be.CB: Does the NFL support analytics sufficiently? For instance, you’ve criticized the rule barring computers from the coaches’ booth.PM: They’re still getting better. There’s the rule against laptops, even calculators. It’s difficult for an offensive coordinator to even capture simple things like average yards per play on a drive, or how successful a certain play has been, in terms of even crunching it in Excel. They have to do it on a notepad. Things like that are frustrating. I wish they would react a little faster to technology changes. They’re getting there. Now they’re allowing tablets on the sidelines, so you don’t have to have the binder full of photos of plays. The FiveThirtyEight film “The Cowboys and the Indian,” which debuted last week, tells the story of A. Salam Qureishi, who brought computerized player analytics to the Dallas Cowboys in the 1960s. At the time, few other pro sports front offices used advanced statistics to make decisions about player acquisition and game management.By 2001, that wasn’t the case in baseball, but the NFL hadn’t progressed much since Qureishi’s days. That year, Paraag Marathe joined the San Francisco 49ers as a one-man team with goals similar to Qureishi’s: improve player acquisition.Marathe, like Qureishi, is of Indian descent. Unlike Qureishi, he knew a lot about football before working in the NFL. Marathe grew up in the Bay Area town of Saratoga, California, as a big fan of the 49ers and other Bay Area teams. He worked for the 49ers first as a consultant, on a three-month stint from the consulting firm Bain and Co. Then San Francisco executive Bill Walsh offered him a full-time job. “It was a no-brainer for me,” Marathe said in a telephone interview last week.Today, Marathe, 37, is one of the elder statesmen of NFL analytics. He oversees it for the 49ers as team president. He sees more of his competitors using similar tools, looking for every competitive advantage they can find. (We spoke last week amid a late-season slump that has eliminated the 49ers from the playoffs after three straight conference-championship-game appearances.) In the following transcript of our interview — lightly edited for brevity and clarity — Marathe explains why it remains easy to hire talented analysts, why communication is more important than statistical rigor and why plenty of good work is still being done outside the league. San Francisco 49ers President Paraag Marathe speaks at the annual Bay Area college football media day at Levi’s Stadium on July 30 in Santa Clara, Calif. Alex Washburn / AP read more

CWC 2018 Real Madrid and Al Ain are set to make

first_imgBoth teams are playing for important objectives: Real Madrid wants its third consecutive world title, while Al Ain wants to be the first non-European/South American championTomorrow, football fans have a date with history as the Grand Final of the 2018 FIFA Club World Cup is set to play.Spanish La Liga giants Real Madrid will take on local Emirati surprise club Al Ain FC, to decide who is the best team in the planet.And both sides are playing for important objectives.Madrid is participating in its fourth FIFA Club World Cup Final, and third consecutive, and want to become the biggest champion in the tournament.They are currently tied with three tiles with fellow Spanish team Barcelona.Meanwhile, Al Ain FC has surprised the world, not only by beating New Zealand’s Team Wellington in the Playoff match, but also defeating Espérance Sportif de Tunis in the Quarterfinals.Sergio Ramos, Real MadridZidane reveals Sergio Ramos injury concern for Real Madrid Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Zinedine Zidane has put Sergio Ramos’ availability for Real Madrid’s trip to Sevilla next weekend in doubt after withdrawing him against Levante.The Boss then defeated Copa Libertadores king River Plate, in a surprising match that had to be decided in penalty kicks.This means, that they have the chance to become the first non-European/South American champion in the tournament’s history.Before this match, Argentina’s River Plate will take on Japanese and Asian champions Kashima Antlers to settle the Third Place of the CWC.Who do you think will win the tournament this Saturday?#CWC18: You can follow all our coverage of the FIFA Club World Cup in our different social media. @ClubWorldCups pic.twitter.com/0BmSDpo0kQ— Ronaldo.com (@ronaldocomint) December 15, 2018last_img read more

Captain Marvel first reactions are in and its pure 90s fun for

first_img #CaptainMarvel has a great ‘90s sci-fi vibe w/ a tone unlike any other Marvel movie, really. It’s retro & trippy, mysterious & dorky. It’s funny in surprising places & badass in all the right places. It remains entertaining because it’s always changing. It’s got the right stuff pic.twitter.com/o7AvqYY63x— Erik Davis (@ErikDavis) February 20, 2019 Captain Marvel is a blast! Has some cool surprises that I definitely didn’t see coming, and the mystery/origin it weaves is engaging and fun. Brie Larson is awesome, and makes a fantastic first step into the MCU #CaptainMarvel pic.twitter.com/oqrRtgDQrp— Eric Eisenberg (@eeisenberg) February 20, 2019 Share your voice #CaptainMarvel⁠ ⁠ is very fun. And I am thrilled to announce Brie Larson wears my EXACT SAME NINE INCH NAILS tee for more than half the film. Seriously. I’ve never seen anyone else with this shirt.— Anna Klassen (@AnnaJKlassen) February 20, 2019 Tags The future of the MCU gets even brighter adding #CaptainMarvel to the mix. Really fell for @brielarson’s sass, strength & energy in the role. Same with @LashanaLynch too! Ben Mendelsohn is A+ casting as Talos. And yes, Goose is a scene stealer. 2nd viewing can’t come soon enough.— Perri Nemiroff (@PNemiroff) February 20, 2019 Lots of fun Easter eggs in #CaptainMarvel that link it to the history and other films in the MCU. Watch closely.— Anna Klassen (@AnnaJKlassen) February 20, 2019 Captain Marvel is everything that I hoped it would be. It feels completely unlike any other Marvel film. A unique and fresh take on an origin story that feels new. Brie Larson is fantastic as Carol Danvers. This is one of my favorite Marvel movies of all time. #CaptainMarvel pic.twitter.com/0ou7HU93MY— Scott Menzel (@TheOtherScottM) February 20, 2019 More on Captain Marvel 77 Photos First published Feb. 19, 9:39 p.m. PT. Update, Feb. 20 at 10:10 a.m. PT: Adds more reactions.  There were also a few unexpected standouts, beyond the usual action and explosions we’ve come to expect from Marvel.  Fans of #CaptainMarvel comics are going to love the movie. Plain and simple.— Brandon Davis (@BrandonDavisBD) February 20, 2019 Captain Marvel: Release, plot, rumors and more Who is Captain Marvel? Your explainer on Brie Larson’s new MCU hero Captain Marvel Super Bowl trailer shows the boys how it’s donecenter_img Comments #CaptainMarvel opens with a very touching Stan Lee tribute that Marvel fans will love. pic.twitter.com/yXDScRwiwW— Anna Klassen (@AnnaJKlassen) February 20, 2019 Really loved #CaptainMarvel. It’s a little wobbly at times but only because it’s so ambitious. It’s beautifully constructed, hilarious and offers tons of surprises. @brielarson obviously rules but Ben Mendelsohn is the surprise MVP. pic.twitter.com/yQLQGl2Yt0— Drew Taylor (@DrewTailored) February 20, 2019 And the best part for loyal fans of the MCU? Captain Marvel opens with a tribute to the late, great Stan Lee.  4 Beyond the awesome turn by Brie Larson as the lead character, fans were loving the ’90s vibe of the film, something Captain Marvel leaned into with its early marketing.  #CaptainMarvel is (takes deep 90s breath) TOTALLY AWESOME. Never related to a Marvel character quite like Carol. She’s the stubborn witty 90s kid I like to think I am. pic.twitter.com/H6Q9s90KHA— Ash Crossan (@AshCrossan) February 20, 2019 Captain Marvel is bringing it.  Marvel Studios It feels like we’ve been waiting an age for Captain Marvel to hit our screens. The newest addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe has promised a lot — a butt-kicking Brie Larson as airforce pilot Carol Danvers (also known as Captain Marvel), Samuel L. Jackson as a pre-eyepatch Nick Fury and a weird alien race known as the Skrulls. But after all that patient waiting (remember, this is Marvel we’re talking about), Captain Marvel has finally landed. Marvel held screenings for a select group of reviewers on Tuesday night and they were ready to share their thoughts as soon as the social media embargo lifted. The film won’t hit theatres until March 8 in the US and UK and March 7 in Australia. You can read up on everything you need to know about the film here in the mean time) But based on the early response, the verdict is in: Captain Marvel has well and truly earned her place in the MCU. “Captain Marvel is everything that I hoped it would be,” one viewer tweeted. “It feels completely unlike any other Marvel film.”    2019 movies to geek out over #CaptainMarvel is pure joy. I cannot wait for the generation of little girls who will grow up with Carol Danvers as a hero.— Devan Coggan (@devancoggan) February 20, 2019 TV and Movies Women of Marvel Captain Marvel Marvellast_img read more

YouTube comments hidden by default in companys new test

first_imgWill YouTube say no comments? Sergei Konkov/Getty Images YouTube’s comments section can be a mix between no man’s land in a war zone and the Wild West. Translation: The place can be dangerous. So instead of making you read what the New Statesman called “the worst of the internet,” YouTube is working on a new feature that would hide comments by default.YouTube didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment but it confirmed the test in a statement to TechCrunch on Friday. “This is one of many small experiments we run all the time on YouTube, and we’ll consider rolling features out more broadly based on feedback on these experiments,” the Google-owned site told the publication. XDA developers had spotted the test in India on Wednesday. You have to scroll past engagement buttons and recommended videos to find the comments section on Android and iOS now, but the new test reportedly hides the comments section entirely. Comments would instead be accessible by clicking a new icon, beneath the video and to the right of the thumbs-down icon. Comments could also be found by scrolling past the recommended videos, like before, but you’d have to tap to see them. It remains to be seen whether a user’s engagement with a video would drop if comments were hidden.  Comment YouTube banning supremacist and hoax videos, Amazon unveils… CNET Apps Today Share your voice Tags Now playing: Watch this: 1:12 1 Mobile Software Mobile Apps YouTubelast_img read more

Queen Elizabeth and the royal treasury will be taxed extra because of

first_imgThe Duchess Of Sussex Undertakes Her First Official Engagement With Queen Elizabeth IIPhil Noble – WPA Pool/Getty ImagesYes, she is a member of the royal family in Britain and that should make her a citizen of UK but since the Duchess of Sussex has not renounced her citizenship of her home country, it might cause monetary headache to the royal family.Since she is still a citizen of the United States of America, the US law still recognizes Meghan Markle as a tax paying citizen of the nation. In an interview to CNN, American Tax Return Ltd. founder David Treitel revealed that the way taxation works in the US could force Markle, who is still a US citizen and holds onto an American passport, to pay taxes on income she, as well as her baby, make as members of the royal family.Ultimately, the tax system in the United States—the law says all income everywhere is taxed unless it’s exempt,” he said, explaining that compensation for personal injury is exempt. Otherwise, “most income everywhere is taxed so if the baby has income, Meghan has an income, they are taxed.” Meghan MarkleGetty ImagesWhat poses a bigger problem is that the taxes can also be collected on account of royal family heirlooms and jewellery that Meghan Markle borrows. This will become a big headache for the Queen for she has occasionally allowed Meghan to borrow jewellery that belongs to the royal family.”The Queen has to sit there and her advisors have to sit there thinking ‘what if I lend Meghan a tiara? If I have the baby use a beautiful silver rattle that was used by Queen Victoria?’ How much is that worth? What’s the value of it? How much should be reported to the state? It’s a tough question, not easy,” David added.Already Meghan Markle has used taxable items like her wedding ring from Princess Diana’s collection. Even the residence in Frogmore Cottage can be reported to the US for tax purpose. This is not the first time that the Duchess of Sussex is being reported for tax purposes. When she got married to Prince Harry, it was reported that Meghan’s income will be doubly taxed due to her status as a US citizen, living in the UK.last_img read more