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Cynthia Frelund | NFL Network Analyst

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The Truth Network Radio
August 31, 2022 6:04 am

Cynthia Frelund | NFL Network Analyst

Amy Lawrence Show / Amy Lawrence

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August 31, 2022 6:04 am

NFL Data Science expert for The NFL Network Cynthia Frelund joins the show to talk about a new way to class players; as well as clear the air on her controvery surrounding Baker Mayfield.

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Cynthia Freeland of NFL Network had an interesting day. Actually it's been an interesting pre-season for Cynthia and we're thrilled as always that she's agreed to join us here on the show.

Now she's in Los Angeles but she spent a bunch of time with the Buffalo Bills over the course of the last several weeks and Cynthia we're always pleased to have you and your bright mathematical mind. Let's start with something wide open in general. What are a few things that you will take away from the pre-season as it was? Basically that you know the this year it's really interesting to see how many of the like 53-man rosters are like comprised of people who could be on other teams like the guys who got cut today they could be on other people's 53-man rosters and certain teams and the Bills especially were so deep that's a really good team the guys who didn't make it like they they could be starters on other teams very easily or at least maybe not even starters but someone who contributes on other teams so you know it's I did learn a lot you know from a lot of different like perhaps maybe some of the like you know now that we're having normal we're back and nowhere at COVID like pre-preseason protocol you know there's a different sort of strategy when it comes to evaluating players and how you keep people and not you saw different teams play their starters during different preseason games so I would imagine that means there's a lot of different strategies that people are enacting in order to kind of understand how to build their rosters and I also was pretty impressed with some of the people this week just league-wide who got rid of people who weren't fitting the bill is despite their high draft pick because that's very hard to do typically people don't do it and you know it's it's it's a really interesting strong way to build your team though. When you look around the NFL there are certainly teams like the Bills that are deep and that have talent so many different positions what other teams maybe stand out everywhere you look they have really talented people. Hard not to talk about the Rams when you talk about that because I mean they spent a lot of time you know they obviously build through free agency and building that way is really like it's very like it's impressive that they can fit it all in and make sure that they have the right blend of top end players and then they fill it out with the guys who aren't first round picks because they clearly haven't had first round picks in a while that one's pretty that's a pretty good team and then you know it's funny because you know two really good quarterbacks this season have extremely changed wide receiving cores obviously both Patrick Mahomes and Aaron Rodgers lost their number one wideout so it will be interesting to see but I think I think people are underestimating the fact that both of them have the ability to make their receivers better obviously Patrick still has Travis Kelsey so that's extremely helpful and you know when you look to see about Aaron Rodgers and what he can do really well he can actually change the speed of the ball on the same route like so expertly that it adjusts to what is right for his receiver so it's actually it's actually pretty cool to see both of those two so you know I think maybe people are underestimating and by the way the Packers defense is gnarly like that's a really really good defense get this Cynthia I have been to Lambeau Field for a preseason game and it was amazing but week number two I'm headed back to Wisconsin to honor my Grammy Helen and while I'm there I'm going to attend the Bears Packers Sunday night game at Lambeau which should be just a show fall in the Midwest is the absolute best so not only are you getting an awesome game but you're also getting like the perfect time to be there all the leaves will be changing it'll be beautiful it will honor your grandmother so beautifully yes in Wisconsin whether or not you love football you all have to follow the Packers everybody knows that we're spending a few minutes with Cynthia Freeland of NFL Network always excited to have her we know we're getting serious about football when she's on the show it's after hours here on CBS Sports Radio every single time we have you on the show I check out your Twitter and there's some type of analytic or formula or new concept and this one fascinates me because we see this a lot in baseball it's a category called war win above replacement and so I just saw on your Twitter that you have got this model these formulas that kind of pinpoint which NFL players will make the greatest contributions to their team success I don't know how you did it but would you care to explain Cynthia yeah so I framed everything in probability of earning a first down or touchdown so keeping the ball in your possession and then ultimately led that to how historically that's mapped to wins or not wins right the losses right so when you look to see how each you know team then side of the ball then position group then individual player how it sort of breaks down so they're contributing to the bottom line the win or the loss you can actually sort of pinpoint how each player relative to each other is their same position is doing so you know we I do it in terms of the wind shares it it ends up being a metric of games but it's not a perfect science because if you say like Aaron Rodgers worth six wins or whatever and then you say like you know Patrick Holmes over 6.1 wins it's it's not like you know obviously games can't be fractional if you don't have Aaron you don't get six there's always some different there's always some difference between it so it's just look at you know the the value of Aaron versus the value of Patrick this year and look at the difference between the sixth one and the sixth there who are a few non-quarterbacks that were near the top of of this list or near the top when you worked out all the science this is the first year so usually you get like a pass catching running back will almost almost always have one of the highest wind chairs mostly because they're on the field for so much volume so you that's historically how it works but for the first time ever top five I have a tight end so Travis Kelsey he broke into the top five in terms of wind chair which is super fun and you know look at his red area of production over the past few years not just his but the the wind chair also takes into account how a player impacts the game when they're not the subjects of a target so when Travis Kelsey's on the field it makes it a better opportunity for the running backs to have space or for the wide receivers to have more you know more separation so things like that and Travis Kelsey his impact in the red area the past five seasons is just unmatched so it's it was actually pretty cool that he busted into the top five because usually it's you know passing running back and then a wide receiver and then but this year he snuck in it's pretty fun who are the top wide receivers because we've had so much wide receiver movement this off season yeah Justin Jefferson is way up there obviously Cooper Cuff is way up the kind of the same guys you see in fantasy it's pretty interesting to see once you get down like a little bit a little bit not further down but like the guys who are you know have more off-ball contributions that you know last year for example like a Julio Jones you know he's hurt this year potentially I don't know where he falls this year but last year he was up there even though we didn't exactly you know he didn't always get the subject of the touchdowns when he was a falcon but you know those it follows much of fantasy football but in some ways you know you have to look and see like I'm trying to think of who was like kind of a surprise on the list um you know I think it was interesting to see like you know actually Allen Robinson bit into some of Cooper Cuff's um wind share which is it's good for the Rams but it's for Cooper Cuff's individual wind share it maybe brought it down just a bit but for Cooper Cuff it and for Allen Robinson it drove it up a little bit higher so you can use it for fantasy as well. Cynthia Freeland is with us right now from LA but had spent some time with the Buffalo Bills you mentioned their deep roster but what impresses you about what they're doing as they approach another season where the expectations are so sky high? This team is dialed in um Von Miller like DJ's in the locker room and the guys like love it but you know they were like dial like every snap of the preseason it didn't matter who was playing you know obviously in the third game of the preseason the Bills put out a lot of their you know the guys who they were trying to make the roster and all of the starters were glued and they were locked in and they just like could not have like they couldn't stop helping they loved it you know there's some continuity here obviously a few positions are changed but there's some continuity that means a lot and then their their o-line seems to be improved at least from every observation I've been able to make. They have a lot of special things going in their draft class is exceptionally deep I mean James Cook gives them some versatility on the outside zone rushing game their corners are wonderful at the sixth round corner Christian Benford out of Villanova that looks incredible with Kyier Elam their first round pick out of Florida so you know they've addressed some positions of need we talked to Davis White isn't completely healthy so you know they they really they really got that nice defensive back depth. So I have two nieces neither one of them thinks that I'm very cool mostly because they're not into sports well they love me but they don't think that my job is all that exciting which is fine with me I'm okay with that I'm not even sure they know what I do for a living but but you got to share some football with your niece I love the pictures I can imagine she thinks you are the coolest auntie on the planet. I mean we had a lot of fun we went to Niagara Falls when we were in Buffalo it wasn't that far and we went on the Maid of the Mist which was super fun we got soaked which was also fun a little surprising we didn't really know you'd get that wet but we we did so we had a really good time she was I'm not going to tell her this because I got to keep like the you know keep keep her like thinking that she still needs to listen to me but she was like so well behaved without me even like asking and so she like it was really nice to like have her you know stay in the moment and enjoy it with me so it was really special so I think she had a good time you know she she had a pretty huge little we say she's a bit sport spoiled like all of you know our family's a little sport spoiled so yes it's all good. All right Cynthia here's your chance what happened with Baker? I mean it's really not that big of a deal but I was at the at the end of the game um the you know the Bills played the Panthers I walked up to Baker I offered him good luck I I truly want to see Baker go out and light it up I mean the first overall pick he's got a lot of firepower he's a good quarterback we've seen very good production from him it's not like you know something crazy and I enjoy I have covered him since before he came out into the league so you know I remember like doing a lot of analytics on him because remember back then he was quote unquote very short meanwhile we have much shorter quarterbacks now right when oh he can't be an overall first overall these ridiculous stuff right so now you know I want him to prove everyone wrong like I I spoke to him after the game and just the same as I would tell any of my girlfriends who are you know going to a wedding and having to see their ex I basically was like give them the revenge body you know come with a cuter date show them what they're missing out on so at the end of the day like I just was we were having a conversation about that and I was supporting Baker and you know he agreed with me because let's be honest what's he supposed to say in that situation he's supposed to be like you know what I don't really want to beat anyone this year let alone the bro you know like it just and then it you know but it took on a bit of a life of its own and it's okay because look I I don't I know my intention and you know there was we were on a field it was not a uh you know it was not a text message exchange there was no whatever in that regard we were on it we were on a field after a game and I was offering support and then I was I think there's a lot of people who take the time to say mean things about Baker I was taking the time to say supportive things about Baker and you know I I I shared it and kind of got a little got a little get a little out of context but you know whatever it's it's kind of like if people stop and stand back for a second and they're like oh a former player wants to beat the team that didn't give them a long-term contract right is there any surprise like it does it's just it's a little silly it is silly and I think most people would say that they agree with you they want to see Baker do well in week number one against this former team because of the way it played out and because of who they replaced him with I think if people are being honest uh so yes a little bit silly just out of curiosity did you hear anything from him after all this uproar I heard I heard a lot of stuff not from Baker directly um you know I I think that at the end of the day this the people with the best egos meaning the ones who are going to actually win I didn't hear anything from them and they didn't even know what's going on because the good people are focused on uh on football that's true good point Cynthia Freeland with us here after hours on CBS Sports Radio okay the other thing that I have to ask about and this goes back to the end of July the start of training camp where you somehow put together a video that really does simulate the way that Aaron Rogers showed up to training camp I have got to ask how this came about because not only was the timing of your video so perfectly choreographed with him you guys were wearing the same outfit seriously how did that happen okay the funny part is I hadn't seen the video and I went to work not the belt but I was wearing pretty much that same outfit we just like switched it a little bit so that's the first thing that the second thing is we did that in my I had a really smart social media producer and he was like we should parody that you're because you're wearing the same outfit as him and I was like all right whatever so two takes and the only reason we didn't use the first take was because there was like a construction thing behind me and I we wanted that out of the shot so it was the second take and honestly sometimes I watch them like I do kind of like look like Aaron Rogers no no he looks like you not you look like him he looks like you that's right because I'm older I was here first so yeah who wore it better oh Cynthia you definitely wore it better it was just wild though like the timing I didn't I didn't count it or anything I just walked around my car and like tried to remember what he did but I got a little lucky with that it was pretty funny because I mean I don't know like we did my producer was really smart he's like exaggerate the bag drop so I was like great idea so I just was a little more dramatic with the bag drop oh it was so fantastic if you have no idea what I'm talking about it is pinned to the top of Cynthia's Twitter and I mean it's been seen so many hundreds of thousands of times it's amazing but yeah doesn't get old to me no it does not I've watched that video I can't even tell you probably 24 times 25 times the choreography is so perfect that was good luck good luck like that was hilarious it was so funny because it was just very funny because I looked at them like I mean I'm gonna be honest with you I kind of come to work looking a little like like a little rough right like I didn't have any makeup on I hadn't brushed my hair that day okay well I just again want to reiterate that he looks well scruffy like Nicolas Cage but you look great no I think he looks great like I think he nailed it yeah like he was trying he went for it and it was perfect he looked like Nicolas maybe me and him both look like Nicolas Cage you do not look like Nicolas Cage however it's um it's amazing it's so good oh well I was gonna say it was an upgrade because the year before I showed up at a conference and I actually was wearing the same outfit as Bill Polian so I think I'm moving up in the world if I'm going from Bill Polian to Aaron Rogers two-time MVP quarterback and you're wearing the same outfit that's amazing I didn't realize that I actually thought you got dressed to look like him but you're telling me I added the belt I added the belt and I had it tied around me a lot more because it's a man's belt so I borrowed it it was great yeah that's awesome you've got to look at Cynthia's twitter it's at c freeland f-r-e-l-u-n-d okay before you let you go are we playing fantasy football or what what's happening we are I've just been I was a little I was meant to do it today it was on my list but uh I've been a little I've been a little I've just I've been a little in my head today so I gotta oh yeah I can understand that peace girl peace you know what's really funny Lindsay Rhodes was on the show about three weeks ago and we didn't realize we were actually both in your league we had no idea I know I think Lindsay told me that yeah that's funny yeah she's giving me all these tips on how to draft and what not to do early on essentially don't draft quarterbacks early on and then we realize we're in the same league and she's like okay everything I just said to you do the opposite Lindsay's the best she's great yeah so much fun all right so find Cynthia on twitter she is the queen of data science for NFL network and she's got some other places you can find her too but best sense of humor ever girl thank you so much for a couple of minutes you got it thanks for having me you
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-31 00:41:30 / 2023-01-31 00:48:54 / 7

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