26 Feb 2011
J.J. Cooper, a blogger for NFL Fanhouse, watched every sack of the NFL season with a stopwatch and counted whether the sack came within three seconds of the snap. While it's a little simplistic to say that all three-plus-second sacks are the quarterback's fault, and that all sacks shorter than that can be blamed on the line, the results make intuitive sense -- the Manning Brothers took just one "long" sack each all year, while Ben Roethlisberger and Michael Vick combined for 39. The king, though, was Joe Flacco, with 25 "long" sacks and only 15 "short" ones.
A few other observations:
* On average, about 35 percent of sacks are "long," so the Flaccos and Roethlisbergers and Vicks of the world, with the vast majority of their sacks lasting longer than three seconds, really are outliers.
* Jimmy Clausen: Five "long" sacks, 29 "short" sacks. It's not all his fault.
* Didn't Aaron Rodgers have a rep for holding the ball too long as a young player? He seems to have gotten over it somewhat -- 10 "long" sacks, 21 "short" sacks.
38 comments, Last at 18 May 2011, 7:11pm by jerry guy
Possibly the closest Super Bowl matchup in history also poses the question: how much does it mean when certain aspects of an NFL team improve dramatically in the second half of the season?