Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completeness

Re: Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completene

Postby rhickok1109 » Sat Nov 20, 2021 9:20 am

Johnny Blood told me that every time the Packers played the Giants, Red Dunn outperformed Friedman.
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Re: Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completene

Postby TanksAndSpartans » Sat Nov 20, 2021 12:15 pm

Here's something pretty cool courtesy of @RichardBak:

http://www.profootballresearchers.com/CC_Index.pdf

Scroll down to G and find:

Gill, Bob. “Before Baugh.” 31:2 (2009). Long before “Slingin’ Sammy” Baugh and Benny Friedman revolutionized the forward pass, the aerial game was alive and well.

Also found this, no idea if its right and I think there must be a more standard source, but just for fun:

https://scoutlife.org/features/151034/how-the-football-has-changed-since-1869/

I thought the part listed under 1935 was interesting.
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Re: Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completene

Postby JameisLoseston » Sat Nov 20, 2021 4:47 pm

rhickok1109 wrote:Johnny Blood told me that every time the Packers played the Giants, Red Dunn outperformed Friedman.


You actually talked to him, like, personally, before he died? That's awesome!

It is true that Dunn's Packers won all three of those rings from 1929-31...
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Re: Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completene

Postby TanksAndSpartans » Sat Nov 20, 2021 5:28 pm

Another one for your reading list. Compare the author name and user name :)

https://www.amazon.com/Vagabond-Halfback-Johnny-Blood-McNally/dp/1434830306
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Re: Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completene

Postby JameisLoseston » Sat Nov 20, 2021 7:52 pm

I think I may have been selling Red Dunn too short. He and his teams almost singlehandedly denied Friedman a championship at the height of his powers. There has to be a lot said for such an impressive game of keep-away, especially since Dunn seemed to be capable of matching Friedman almost blow for blow when required. Of course, Benny didn't have a receiver on Johnny Blood's level, but that's not comparable to having Don Hutson for half your career, either, which undoubtedly inflated the stats of Herber and Isbell; hence, it could be said that Dunn was as good as them, at least. I already considered him a HOVG candidate, but things I've learned in this thread make me ask "why tf hasn't he been in for 10 years?!"
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Re: Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completene

Postby JameisLoseston » Tue Nov 23, 2021 3:02 am

I would like to continue this project. Can someone drop me a link to the source where David Neft originally published his 1920s NFL stats? I will need access to the precise data on complete and incomplete games found in that primary source.
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Re: Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completene

Postby Bob Gill » Tue Nov 23, 2021 9:04 am

JameisLoseston wrote:I would like to continue this project. Can someone drop me a link to the source where David Neft originally published his 1920s NFL stats? I will need access to the precise data on complete and incomplete games found in that primary source.


The first publication was called "The Sports Encyclopedia: Pro Football: The Early Years." (It cuts off at 1959, and was followed by another volume that went on from there.) That came out around 1982. But about a decade later the two books were combined into one volume that covered the entire span from 1920 on. That one was just called "The Football Encyclopedia," and there were at least two editions of that.

The later ones are slightly better, because Neft must have found a handful of additional play-by-plays in the interim, so it's slightly more complete. (I don't think Friedman's numbers changed, though.) And the later ones are hardback, while the first one was paperback, so they're a little more sturdy.

P.S. I just checked on ebay, and found at least one copy of the 1982 "early years" book for $12 or so, plus two copies of one of the 1990s editions (with a green cover) for $6 or $7.
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Re: Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completene

Postby TanksAndSpartans » Tue Nov 23, 2021 5:49 pm

Thanks Bob. I just realized last night that my version doesn't have interceptions.

@JL, I think my very first year making HOVG nominations, Andy gave me an extra and I chose Red Dunn. I don't recall whether he made it past the committee, but I'd vote for him - may need someone else to nominate him though. I don't think he gets a nom often.
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Re: Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completene

Postby Bryan » Tue Nov 23, 2021 5:52 pm

Bob Gill wrote:The first publication was called "The Sports Encyclopedia: Pro Football: The Early Years." (It cuts off at 1959, and was followed by another volume that went on from there.) That came out around 1982. But about a decade later the two books were combined into one volume that covered the entire span from 1920 on. That one was just called "The Football Encyclopedia," and there were at least two editions of that.

The later ones are slightly better, because Neft must have found a handful of additional play-by-plays in the interim, so it's slightly more complete. (I don't think Friedman's numbers changed, though.) And the later ones are hardback, while the first one was paperback, so they're a little more sturdy.

P.S. I just checked on ebay, and found at least one copy of the 1982 "early years" book for $12 or so, plus two copies of one of the 1990s editions (with a green cover) for $6 or $7.


I still use my 1991 hardback edition on a regular basis. I like the layout of the statistical tables, and they give a yearly subjective review of each team's season. I use PFR for looking up individual player data, but I use the Neft/Cohen book for pretty much everything else. It's a truly remarkable piece of research, like the PFRA version of the Book of Kells.
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Re: Benny Friedman NPR, and a word on statistical completene

Postby JameisLoseston » Tue Nov 23, 2021 7:31 pm

Bryan wrote:
Bob Gill wrote:The first publication was called "The Sports Encyclopedia: Pro Football: The Early Years." (It cuts off at 1959, and was followed by another volume that went on from there.) That came out around 1982. But about a decade later the two books were combined into one volume that covered the entire span from 1920 on. That one was just called "The Football Encyclopedia," and there were at least two editions of that.

The later ones are slightly better, because Neft must have found a handful of additional play-by-plays in the interim, so it's slightly more complete. (I don't think Friedman's numbers changed, though.) And the later ones are hardback, while the first one was paperback, so they're a little more sturdy.

P.S. I just checked on ebay, and found at least one copy of the 1982 "early years" book for $12 or so, plus two copies of one of the 1990s editions (with a green cover) for $6 or $7.


I still use my 1991 hardback edition on a regular basis. I like the layout of the statistical tables, and they give a yearly subjective review of each team's season. I use PFR for looking up individual player data, but I use the Neft/Cohen book for pretty much everything else. It's a truly remarkable piece of research, like the PFRA version of the Book of Kells.


Great! I'll pick it up for sure.

@tanks, I really need to compile a list of guys I want to nominate annually for HOVG. I've certainly talked about enough options.

However, I think I may have unearthed what is holding Dunn back: he shared passing downs almost evenly with Verne Lewellen, so it's harder to credit him unambiguously as the QB of those championship teams. Verne was a great player, obviously, but I cannot comprehend why they kept giving him so many chances to throw. He was a halfback and hence a non-native passer of the ball, who offered absolutely no value in that capacity. Give Dunn all of his attempts, and he likely approaches Friedman's level of production.
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