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» Seventh Day Adventure: Week 13

The biggest game this week is the Iron Bowl, where the playoff hopes of Alabama, Auburn, and Georgia hang in the balance.

17 Oct 2017

Week 6 Quick Reads

by Vincent Verhei

After handily beating the Tennessee Titans and New York Jets to open the year, the Oakland Raiders have now lost four games in a row, most recently a 17-16 cliffhanger to the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday on a Nick Novak field goal at the gun. Had Novak missed that kick, we might be talking about how Michael Crabtree was keeping the Raiders offense afloat, leading the team in catches and receiving yards and scoring their only touchdown. Meanwhile, Amari Cooper suffered the latest in a long string of disappointing days.

This is nothing new for the Raiders. Cooper, who made the Pro Bowl in each of his first two seasons, was expected to develop even further in his third year. Instead, he has been nearly invisible. Crabtree, signed in free agency three years ago to be Cooper's veteran sidekick, has been the more productive player by far. Virtually every week of the season, Crabtree's numbers have dwarfed Cooper's no matter who was throwing passes for the Raiders or who the opposing defense was.

  • Week 1: In a win over Tennessee, Cooper sees 13 targets, but catches only five for 62 yards. He does score a touchdown -- his first and only score of the year thus far. Meanwhile, Crabtree has more catches (six) and yards (83) than Cooper, on barely half as many targets (seven).
  • Week 2: Crabtree goes off in a win over the Jets, catching six-of-six targets for 80 yards and three (!) touchdowns. Cooper has a quiet day with a 5-4-33-0 statline, but with the Oakland offense so effective, nobody really notices.
  • Week 3: The Raiders score only 10 points in a loss to Washington. Both Oakland wideouts have terrible days, but Crabtree's numbers (3-1-7-0) are still better than Cooper's (5-1-6-0).
  • Week 4: Again, the Raiders are held to just 10 points as Derek Carr is knocked out of the game and EJ Manuel takes his place. Crabtree missed this game with a chest injury suffered against Washington. In theory, this should have meant more opportunities for Cooper. He did see eight targets, the most since the opener against Tennessee. But he only caught two of those targets, for a total of 9 yards.
  • Week 5: Crabtree returns against Baltimore and catches 6-of-8 targets for 82 yards and a touchdown. Cooper, meanwhile, sees only two targets, catching one of them for 8 yards.
  • Week 6: With Carr returning to the lineup, Cooper catches five of six targets, but gains only 28 yards and fails to score. That's 84 total yards for Cooper in his last five games, a terrible number for an alleged No. 1 wide receiver. Carr instead focuses on Crabtree, throwing him ten passes and completing six for 52 yards and a touchdown.

The basic stats paint a clear picture of who has been better in 2017. Only two players this year have caught more touchdowns than Crabtree, even though the veteran has missed one-sixth of the season. His current catch rate of 73.5 percent would shatter his prior career-high of 66.9 percent set in 2012, but he's not doing it via useless checkdowns -- he's averaging 12.2 yards per catch, higher than his career average of 12.0.

Meanwhile, Cooper is only fourth on the team in receiving yards, behind not only Crabtree but also Seth Roberts and tight end Jared Cook. Cooper's catch rate (46.2 percent), catches per game (3.0), yards per game (24.3), and yards per catch (8.1) would all be the worst marks of his career.

The advanced numbers make the difference between the two even more clear. After Week 5, Crabtree led all 74 qualifying wide receivers in both DYAR and DVOA, while Cooper was dead-last in DYAR and 71st in DVOA. That won't be true this week -- about a half-dozen receivers had big games to pass Crabtree at the top of the table, and Cooper will be next to last -- but the general point will still be the same: Crabtree has been one of the NFL's best wide receivers this season, while Cooper has been one of its worst. Going into Monday Night Football, Crabtree has 125 DYAR, while Cooper has -90. Extrapolate those numbers over a full season (and account for Crabtree's missed game) and you get a gap of 638 DYAR, which would be the biggest difference between any two qualifying wide receivers on the same team on record.

Biggest Gaps Between Teammates in DYAR, Qualifying WRs, 1989-2016
Year Team Best WR DYAR Worst WR DYAR Difference Quarterback W-L Playoffs
2005 CAR Steve Smith 506 Keary Colbert -26 532 Jake Delhomme 11-5 Lost NFC Champ
2002 IND Marvin Harrison 493 Qadry Ismail -25 518 Peyton Manning 10-6 Lost Wild Card
2001 IND Marvin Harrison 534 Terrence Wilkins 26 508 Peyton Manning 6-10 --
2013 CLE Josh Gordon 336 Greg Little -171 507 Jason Campbell 4-12 --
1998 BUF Eric Moulds 459 Kevin Williams -46 505 Doug Flutie 10-6 Lost Wild Card
2003 MIN Randy Moss 515 Nate Burleson 11 504 Daunte Culpepper 9-7 --
2011 DET Calvin Johnson 565 Nate Burleson 63 503 Matthew Stafford 10-6 Lost Wild Card
2005 WAS Santana Moss 407 David Patten -79 486 Mark Brunell 10-6 Lost Divisional
2003 STL Torry Holt 513 Dane Looker 28 485 Marc Bulger 12-4 Lost Divisional
1999 JAC Jimmy Smith 470 Keenan McCardell -6 476 Mark Brunell 14-2 Lost AFC Champ
1995 DAL Michael Irvin 591 Kevin Williams 117 473 Troy Aikman 12-4 Won Super Bowl
2006 MIA Marty Booker 179 Chris Chambers -294 473 Joey Harrington 6-10 --
2014 PIT Antonio Brown 554 Markus Wheaton 84 470 Ben Roethlisberger 11-5 Lost Wild Card
2014 GB Jordy Nelson 482 Davante Adams 19 463 Jordy Nelson 12-4 Lost NFC Champ
1991 DAL Michael Irvin 441 Alvin Harper -16 457 Troy Aikman 11-5 Lost Divisional
1995 SF Jerry Rice 514 John Taylor 58 456 Steve Young 11-5 Lost Divisional
2010 DEN Brandon Lloyd 421 Eddie Royal -33 454 Kyle Orton 4-12 --
1992 DAL Michael Irvin 473 Alvin Harper 28 446 Troy Aikman 13-3 Won Super Bowl
2015 PIT Antonio Brown 517 Martavis Bryant 75 442 Ben Roethlisberger 10-6 Lost Divisional
Minimum 50 targets each.

In most of these cases, the statistical gulf was mostly due to one player having a great year, not his teammate having a terrible one. Michael Irvin's 1995 season was the best for any wide receiver in our database. Calvin Johnson's 2011, Antonio Brown's 2014 and 2015, Randy Moss' 2003, Jerry Rice's 1995, Torry Holt's 2003, Steve Smith's 2005, Marvin Harrison's 2001 and 2002, Jordy Nelson's 2014, Jimmy Smith's 1999, and Eric Moulds' 1998 all make the top 30. As we can see in the win-loss records and playoff results, you can do quite well for yourself with one dominant receiver at the peak of his game, even if one of his teammates isn't doing nearly as well.

(It's also interesting to see some of the names that repeat, but on different teams. Nate Burleson was around for some of Randy Moss' and Calvin Johnson's best years. Maybe there's something to be said for the value of a quality secondary wideout. Kevin Williams was primarily a kick returner who struggled to find a fit on offense in either Dallas or Buffalo. And Mark Brunell was the quarterback for big years for Jimmy Smith and Santana Moss, even if Keenan McCardell and David Patten struggled. Does that tell us something about Brunell's reliance on a dominant wideout? That is an essay for another day.)

But this isn't what's happening in Oakland. Michael Crabtree hasn't even been the best wide receiver this year, and clearly is not having an all-time great season. The 2017 Raiders look more like the 2010 Broncos or 2013 Browns than all those great Dallas or Pittsburgh offenses. The detriment of Amari Cooper's lousy season is having about as strong an effect as the benefit of Crabtree's big year. That said, they're still a far sight better than the 2006 Dolphins. Chris Chambers that year had the worst wide receiver season on record. (Tavon Austin last year was second-worst at -219 DYAR.) This is also the only team in the table where the "worst" wide receiver was actually the top wideout on the team -- Chambers had 153 targets that season, while Marty Booker had only 90.

The closer we look at this, though, the more we realize that what the Raiders are doing this season is unique. Cooper, at his current pace, would finish with -239 DYAR in 16 games, worse than anyone save Chambers in 2006. Crabtree, meanwhile, is on pace for exactly 400 DYAR in 15 games, a very fine year -- there were only 68 400-DYAR seasons by wide receivers from 1989 to 2016. It should come as no shock that there has never been a 400-DYAR wideout and a -200-DYAR wideout on the same team, but nobody has ever really come close. The 2013 Browns are the only team on record with one wide receiver over 300 DYAR and another below -100. Only four other teams even hit 200 and -100: The 1989 Lions (Richard Johnson: 241 DYAR; Walter Stanley: -161 DYAR), 2007 Chiefs (Dwayne Bowe: 207; Jeff Webb: -115), 2015 Packers (James Jones: 206; Davante Adams: -109), and 2016 Seahawks (Doug Baldwin: 263; Jermaine Kearse: -114). Including the Josh Gordon Browns, those five teams had a combined record of 35-44-1, with two playoff wins. So no, this does not seem like a blueprint for historical success. We must repeat, though, that none of these teams had a wide receiver as good as Crabtree has been this year, nor one as bad as Cooper. We are still only one-third through the season, and plenty can change over the next 11 weeks. But what Oakland is doing in 2017 is unprecedented in the last 28 years of football.

Quarterbacks
Rk
Player
Team
CP/AT
Yds
TD
INT
Sacks
Total
DYAR
Pass
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Opp
1.
Kirk Cousins WAS
25/37
330
2
1
1
172
147
25
SF
Well, that statline doesn't look very good for the best quarterback of the week, does it? The biggest factor here is that Cousins' interception didn't hurt his DYAR very much at all. It came on third-and-12, so the odds of success were very low anyway. And it was thrown very deep, resulting in a net switch of 48 yards of field position and giving the 49ers the ball at their own 20. In fact, there were more than 60 completed passes in the NFL this week that were worse, by DYAR, than Cousins' interception. Joe Flacco and Philip Rivers each had six of them. As for what Cousins did right, he made most of his big plays in the second quarter, going 8-of-12 for 120 yards with one touchdown, one sack, and yes, one pesky interception. He picked up two third-down conversions in the quarter, and also picked up a first down on second-and-22. Cousins also got a lot of help from his receivers -- his average completion produced 9.4 yards after the catch, nearly a full yard higher than anyone else.
2.
Carson Palmer ARI
18/22
283
3
1
2
146
163
-17
TB
Palmer actually had negative DYAR in the second half, but his first half was just ridiculous: 13-of-13 passing for 211 yards (that's a 16.2-yard average) with a pair of touchdowns, plus a 9-yard DPI and one sack. Eleven of those completions resulted in first downs; the others were a 6-yard gain on second-and-11 and a 9-yard gain on first-and-10.
3.
Tom Brady NE
20/38
257
2
1
0
103
103
0
NYJ
Third-down passing: 7-of-12 for 121 yards and a touchdown. Those weren't meaningless dumpoffs either -- every one of those completions produced a first down, including conversions with 11 and 13 yards to go.
4.
Ryan Fitzpatrick TB
22/32
290
3
2
1
75
78
-3
ARI
All of Fitzpatrick's passes came with Tampa Bay down by at least 12 points. His magic passing range came on throws that traveled 9 to 15 yards past the line of scrimmage: 6-of-6 for 100 yards. All six of those completions resulted in first downs, including a touchdown and four third-down conversions.
5.
C.J. Beathard SF
19/36
245
1
1
2
75
67
7
WAS
Beathard came off the bench and moved San Francisco up and down the field, but couldn't get the team into the end zone. In the red zone, he went 2-of-6 for 14 yards with a sack. Those two completions were an 8-yard gain on third-and-10 and a 6-yard gain on third-and-7.
6.
Case Keenum MIN
24/38
239
1
1
0
72
63
9
GB
Keenum led the league this week in DYAR on passes to the offense's left, going 10-of-13 for 125 yards. Eight of those completions resulted in first downs. And a 14th throw resulted in 42 yards and another first down on a DPI.
7.
Marcus Mariota TEN
23/32
306
1
1
1
65
64
1
IND
Mariota's last incomplete pass came with about five minutes left in the third quarter. He completed his last 11 passes of the game. Yes, there was a sack in there, and some failed completions. But his last five throws -- all with Tennessee trailing or tied in the fourth quarter -- all went for first downs, and a total of 104 yards.
8.
Philip Rivers LACH
25/36
268
1
0
1
64
64
0
OAK
When I heard that the Chargers had won this game on a final-gun field goal, I figured Rivers must have been throwing the ball after the two-minute warning in desperate need of just one score, as usual. But that actually wasn't the case. Rivers' last pass was a 23-yard gain to Hunter Henry with 2:45 to go. From there, Melvin Gordon carried the ball on five straight plays, then Rivers took a couple of kneeldowns to set up Nick Novak for the winning kick. Most of Rivers' damage was done on throws that traveled 14 to 22 yards past the line of scrimmage: 5-of-5 for 116 yards, with every completion going for a first down.
9.
Ben Roethlisberger PIT
17/25
252
1
1
1
54
54
0
KC
Not a good day on third downs: 3-of-8 for 75 yards with only two conversions, one interception, and one sack. Of course, one of those conversions was a 51-yard touchdown to Antonio Brown that gave Pittsburgh some badly needed insurance points.
10.
Matt Ryan ATL
24/34
248
1
1
2
54
54
0
MIA
Ryan struggled all day trying to make plays once crossing midfield. On Miami's side of the 50, he went 7-of-11 for 70 yards with one touchdown, one interception, and one sack. That may not sound too bad, but only three of those completions resulted in first downs, including a 40-yard touchdown. That one play was more than offset by the interception. The 5-yard gain on third-and-24 didn't help Atlanta's cause much either.
11.
Carson Wentz PHI
16/30
222
3
0
3
52
42
10
CAR
Technically, "deep" passes are those that travel more than 15 yards past the line of scrimmage, but if we extend that to throws that traveled more than 13 yards past the line of scrimmage, we get these numbers for Wentz this week: 7-of-9 for 146 yards.
12.
Alex Smith KC
19/34
246
1
0
3
51
54
-3
PIT
Smith made some big plays in the second half to make a game of things, but he only had the chance to to do that because Kansas City's defense limited the early damage as Smith bumbled his way through one of the most inept first halves you'll see all year. Before halftime, Smith went 5-of-8 for 23 yards with two sacks. None of those completions resulted in first downs. Only two were successful. Three were failed third-down plays.
Rk
Player
Team
CP/AT
Yds
TD
INT
Sacks
Total
DYAR
Pass
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Opp
13.
Jared Goff LARM
11/21
124
1
0
3
42
42
0
JAC
Throws that traveled 6 to 18 yards past the line of scrimmage: 7-of-7 for 113 yards, with every completion producing enough yardage for a first down. All other throws: 4-of-14 for 11 yards and only one first down, a 4-yard touchdown to Gerald Everett.
14.
Jacoby Brissett IND
22/37
212
1
0
0
36
44
-9
TEN
Somebody remind me to study QB streakiness again some time this year. At one point in the second quarter, Brissett had nine successful plays in a row. He immediately followed that with nine unsuccessful plays in a row. One of those would have been successful if Brissett's receiver hadn't fumbled the ball away, but it still shows how hot the Colts offense was early, and how it got ice-cold in a hurry.
15.
Deshaun Watson HOU
17/29
225
3
1
1
29
29
-1
CLE
The middle of Cleveland's defense, it is no good. On throws up the middle, Watson went 6-of-9 for 45 yards. That yardage total is skewed by one 6-yard loss -- the other five completions combined for 50 yards and five first downs, including two touchdowns.
16.
Eli Manning NYG
11/19
128
1
0
3
15
28
-13
DEN
Some day, we will have WR-adjusted DVOA for quarterbacks. And when we do, this game will likely be the standard-bearer. Manning's wide receivers for this game -- Roger Lewis, Tavarres King, Travis Rudolph, and Ed Eagen -- entered the weekend with a combined career total of 19 catches. And so Manning only threw to them when absolutely necessary, with five of their six targets against Denver coming on third downs, the other on second-and-10. Manning went 2-of-6 for 22 yards on throws that group. Instead, he relied on his tight ends (especially Evan Engram), going 6-of-9 for 88 yards on throws to those players. Manning's negative rushing DYAR came on one play, a fumble recovered by New York that resulted in a 3-yard loss.
17.
Jay Cutler MIA
19/33
151
2
1
0
9
9
0
ATL
Cutler was one of the worst quarterbacks in the league when throwing on first down this week: 4-of-10 for 33 yards and only one first down.
18.
Jameis Winston TB
5/10
61
0
0
0
4
4
0
ARI
19.
Trevor Siemian DEN
29/50
376
1
2
4
-10
-12
2
NYG
Siemian frequently led the Broncos into scoring range, but had trouble finishing drives. Inside the Giants 40, he went 6-of-17 for 39 yards with an interception and two sacks. Only two of those dropbacks resulted in first downs, including just one touchdown.
20.
Mitchell Trubisky CHI
8/16
113
1
0
4
-18
-19
1
BAL
Trubisky's 27-yard touchdown to Dion Sims put the Bears up 17-3 midway through the third quarter. From that point to the end of the game, Trubisky went 4-of-6 for 39 yards with only one first down, three sacks, and one fumble.
21.
Drew Brees NO
21/31
186
2
2
0
-19
-19
0
DET
How to nearly blow a huge lead, by Drew Brees: After throwing a 2-yard touchdown pass to put your team ahead 38-10 with about nine minutes left in the third quarter, stop throwing first downs. Seriously, Brees didn't pick up a single first down in the final 24 minutes of the game. In that stretch, he went 7-of-14 for 25 yards with a pick-six.
22.
Josh McCown NYJ
31/46
354
2
2
4
-33
-42
9
NE
GABBERT WATCH UPDATE: McCown now has -152 passing DYAR this year and -1,483 in his career, still far short of Blaine Gabbert's career mark of -1,928. He keeps inching closer every week, but the season is only so long. If he had played the whole game against New England as well as he did on the first three drives, I probably would have given up on this feature. On those three drives, McCown went 11-of-15 for 149 yards and two touchdowns.
Rk
Player
Team
CP/AT
Yds
TD
INT
Sacks
Total
DYAR
Pass
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Opp
23.
Blake Bortles JAC
23/35
241
1
1
5
-34
-35
1
LARM
In addition to his interception, Bortles had two fumbles -- and all three of those plays came inside the Rams' 31. Fortunately for Bortles, the Jaguars fell on both of those balls. On third and fourth downs, he went 7-of-13 for 62 yards with two sacks, one fumble, one interception, and only four conversions.
24.
Brian Hoyer SF
4/11
34
0
0
1
-44
-44
0
WAS
Only one of Hoyer's 12 dropbacks resulted in a first down -- which is why he only had 12 dropbacks.
25.
Cam Newton CAR
28/52
239
1
3
2
-54
-89
34
PHI
Third-/fourth-down passing: 7-of-16 for 59 yards, three conversions, three interceptions.
26.
Derek Carr OAK
21/30
171
1
2
1
-61
-61
0
LACH
Midway through the third quarter, the Raiders were up 10-7 and had a second-and-7 at the Chargers' 15. A field goal would have extended Oakland's lead. A touchdown would have made life very difficult for the Chargers. Instead, Carr's pass was intercepted by Hayes Pullard to end the drive. No worries though, Carr still had 20-plus minutes to atone for that mistake -- but he failed to pick up a single first down for the rest of the game. Including that interception, Carr closed out this game by going 6-of-9 for 36 yards, including four failed completions.
27.
Joe Flacco BAL
24/41
180
0
2
3
-127
-123
-3
CHI
Red zone passing: 1-of-6 for -1 yard (not a typo), plus one sack. On deep passes, Flacco went 0-for-6 with two interceptions. All six deep passes went to the right side of the field. He only threw five passes to his left, going 4-of-5 for 14 yards.
28.
Matthew Stafford DET
25/52
312
3
3
5
-149
-149
0
NO
By DYAR, only Tom Brady had a better performance than Stafford on third downs this week. Unfortunately for the Lions, Stafford was the worst passer in the league on first down, and also the worst passer in the league on second down. Putting his first- and second-down numbers together, you get 16-of-38 for 147 yards with three sacks, three interceptions (two of them resulting in defensive scores), one fumble, and DPIs for gains of 10 and 34 yards. Inside his own 20, he went 0-for-5 with two sacks, one fumble, and one interception -- both turnovers resulted in New Orleans touchdowns. Cam Newton is the only other quarterback who has turned the ball over twice inside his own 20 all season (not counting fumbles recovered by the offense). Stafford's turnovers led to three defensive touchdowns on Sunday, bringing his season total to four. Nobody else has more than two.
29.
Kevin Hogan CLE
21/37
140
1
3
4
-158
-171
14
HOU
It has come crashing down, and it hurts inside. Believe it or not, Hogan had positive DYAR in the first quarter, which largely balanced out his bad-but-not-that-bad performance in the second half. He's mostly in this spot because he had the second quarter from Hell: 6-of-14 for 35 yards with one DPI for 6 more yards, two sacks, and three interceptions, one of which was returned for a touchdown. And then there's third downs, where Hogan had ten dropbacks, no conversions, no completions, two interceptions, two sacks, one fumble, and an intentional grounding penalty for a safety. It is nearly impossible to find a game where a quarterback played worse on third downs...
30.
Brett Hundley GB
18/33
157
1
3
4
-165
-166
0
MIN
... but that didn't stop Hundley from trying. He did have four third-down conversions, including a game-tying touchdown, but even with that he went 5-of-12 for 57 yards with two sacks and three interceptions. He also had three fourth-down dropbacks, converting two on completions of 4 and 5 yards, but taking another sack on the third. However, Hundley had a much shorter distance to go on third/fourth downs (5.8 yards, on average) than Hogan did (8.5), and so the DYAR numbers there are much closer than the raw numbers would suggest. The bigger issue for Hundley, though were his directional splits. He was good when throwing up the middle (3-of-5 for 37 yards) but much worse throwing to his right (8-of-14 for 71 yards, 26 of those yards coming on one play) and a complete disaster when throwing to his left (7-of-14 for 49 yards and all three interceptions).


Five Best Running Backs by DYAR (Total)
Rk
Player
Team
Runs
Rush
Yds
Rush
TD
Rec
Rec
Yds
Rec
TD
Total
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Rec
DYAR
Opp
1.
Orleans Darkwa NYG
21
117
0
1/1
13
0
48
40
8
DEN
Darkwa was hit for no gain or a loss six times. Only four of his carries gained more than 5 yards, and only four went for first downs. However, those four first downs came on gains of 14, 15, 19, and 47 yards.
2.
Adrian Peterson ARI
26
134
2
0/0
0
0
39
39
0
TB
You might have heard this week that Peterson needs a lot of carries to be productive, but I'd like to point out that he had 76 yards on seven carries in the first quarter, 58 yards on 19 carries after that. He finished with four gains of 11 yards or more, while getting hit for no gain or a loss six times and fumbling once.
3.
DeMarco Murray TEN
12
40
1
4/4
47
0
38
17
21
IND
Not much value as a runner, with a long run of only 7 yards and only three first downs. But he had catches of 11, 13, and 18 yards, two of those going for third-down conversions. By the way, Derrick Henry was sixth among running backs this week, so it was a big game for Tennessee running backs.
4.
Chris Thompson WAS
16
35
0
4/5
105
0
35
-14
49
SF
A long run of just 11 yards and only two first downs, with one fumble and six runs for no gain or a loss. (How do you lose 9 yards on first-and-10?) But he had catches of 13, 20, 23, and 49 yards. And he did most of that work on his own, with 111 percent of his receiving yardage coming after the catch. That's not a typo -- he had -12 yards through the air, 117 after the catch.
5.
Carlos Hyde SF
13
28
2
5/6
47
0
33
12
21
WAS
Hyde had two 1-yard touchdown runs. Those were his only first downs on the ground all day. His longest run was a 7-yard gain on first-and-15, and he was hit for no gain or a loss four times. All his catches gained at least 6 yards, and two gained 12 yards and a first down, including a third-down conversion.


Five Best Running Backs by DYAR (Rushing)
Rk
Player
Team
Runs
Rush
Yds
Rush
TD
Rec
Rec
Yds
Rec
TD
Total
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Rec
DYAR
Opp
1.
Orleans Darkwa NYG
21
117
0
1/1
13
0
48
40
8
DEN
2.
Adrian Peterson ARI
26
134
2
0/0
0
0
39
39
0
TB
3.
Alvin Kamara NO
10
75
0
4/4
12
0
26
36
-10
DET
Only one of Kamara's carries lost yardage, while five picked up first downs and four gained 10 yards or more, including a 21-yarder. His receiving DYAR is bad because only one of his catches was a successful play, and that was a 6-yard gain on second-and-9.
4.
Devonta Freeman ATL
9
68
0
2/4
11
0
19
28
-8
MIA
Almost all of Freeman's rushing DYAR came on his 44-yard burst in the second quarter. He had only one other first down on the day, while getting hit for no gain or a loss four times.
5.
Duke Johnson CLE
5
40
0
2/6
-1
0
6
27
-21
HOU
His five carries, in order: 6-yard gain on first-and-10; 3-yard gain on second-and-4; 2-yard gain on third-and-1; 15-yard gain on first-and-10; 14-yard gain on third-and-1. That's a 100 percent success rate, which is impressive even on only five runs. Orleans Darkwa, the most valuable runner of the week, only had four successful runs in 21 carries.


Worst Running Back by DYAR (Total)
Rk
Player
Team
Runs
Rush
Yds
Rush
TD
Rec
Rec
Yds
Rec
TD
Total
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Rec
DYAR
Opp
1.
Jonathan Stewart CAR
8
-4
0
0/2
0
0
-37
-31
-6
PHI
Note that the headline for this table says worst running back by total DYAR. And by total DYAR, the worst back of the week was Jonathan Stewart. But since we'll talk about him in a minute, let me say that the worst rushing and receiving DYAR this week belonged to Chicago's Tarik Cohen. Cohen had 14 carries for 34 yards, with only two first downs, no run longer than 9 yards, and five stuffs for no gain or a loss. There were only 11 carries around the league this week that lost 6 or more yards, and Cohen had two of them. He also fumbled on one carry. He was thrown three passes, and his only catch was a 14-yard gain on third-and-23. That's -29 DYAR rushing and -9 DYAR receiving, for a total of -38. However, Cohen also 27 DYAR passing for his one throw, a 21-yard touchdown to Zach Miller. So Cohen finishes with -11 total DYAR, which gives Stewart the worst total DYAR among running backs.


Worst Running Back by DYAR (Rushing)
Rk
Player
Team
Runs
Rush
Yds
Rush
TD
Rec
Rec
Yds
Rec
TD
Total
DYAR
Rush
DYAR
Rec
DYAR
Opp
1.
Jonathan Stewart CAR
8
-4
0
0/2
0
0
-37
-31
-6
PHI
None of Stewart's carries were successful. His longest runs were a 3-yard gain on second-and-12 and a 2-yard gain on second-and-10. He was hit for no gain or a loss five times. His median gain was zero yards.


Five Best Wide Receivers and Tight Ends by DYAR
Rk
Player
Team
Rec
Att
Yds
Avg
TD
Total
DYAR
Opp
1.
Larry Fitzgerald ARI
10
11
138
13.8
1
61
TB
Fitzgerald fumbled a ball away for a Tampa Bay touchdown and still was the most valuable receiver of the week. That's because eight of his catches went for first downs, and another was a 9-yard gain on first-and-10. He also gained a ninth first down on a 9-yard DPI. At one point he picked up first downs on seven straight targets.
2.
Demaryius Thomas DEN
10
14
133
13.3
0
61
NYG
Thomas had a fumble too, but he also had six first downs on the day, incuding DPIs of 15 and 37 yards.
3.
Antonio Brown PIT
8
10
155
19.4
1
59
KC
Five first downs, including gains of 26 and 30 yards, plus a 51-yard touchdown.
4.
Ted Ginn NO
4
4
66
16.5
1
50
DET
Ginn's totals include 48 DYAR receiving, 1 DYAR rushing for his one carry, a 3-yard gain. (It's actually 48.2 and 1.4, which adds up to 49.6, which rounds up to 50.) Three of his catches produced first downs; the fourth was a 9-yard gain on first-and-10.
5.
Kenny Stills MIA
4
4
49
12.2
1
40
ATL
Three of his catches produced first downs; the fourth was a 9-yard gain on first-and-10. Yes, I copy-and-pasted this from Ginn's comment, but it's accurate for Stills as well.


Worst Wide Receiver or Tight End by DYAR
Rk
Player
Team
Rec
Att
Yds
Avg
TD
Total
DYAR
Opp
1.
Delanie Walker TEN
4
8
17
4.2
0
-53
IND
Walker's totals include -37 DYAR receiving, -16 DYAR rushing for his one carry, a 3-yard loss on second-and-goal from the 2. He only had one first down as a receiver, with failures to convert on second-and-4, third-and-5 (twice), and third-and-7.

Posted by: Vincent Verhei on 17 Oct 2017

70 comments, Last at 23 Oct 2017, 5:23pm by Vincent Verhei

Comments

1
by Raiderfan :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 7:43am

Couldn't you find anything more interesting to write about in the initial narrative?

On another note, the comments about Stafford were very interesting. Is there an easy way for you to calculate the 1st/2nd/3rd down splits and include them in the comments?

2
by Will Allen :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 8:47am

Joe Flacco will have earned 135 million by the end of this year, and the Ravens can't really sever ties with him until after next year, at the earliest, by which time he'll have earned 147 million. He's had one year when he's been top 10 by DYAR or by DVOA, and is on track this year to finish below 25 for the 4th time, in 10 seasons. 3 good playoff games in a row will really do a lot for a qb.

18
by MilkmanDanimal :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:57am

I don't think that's a fair assessment of Joe Flacco's career, Will.

It was FOUR good playoff games in a row.

19
by Will Allen :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:58am

D'OHHH!

37
by theslothook :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:57pm

I dont think he was that great in the first round against the colts. That was an overall close game until a few backbreaking runs by the typically soft colts defense led to a deficit and then the corresponding Luck turnover and sack.

23
by lokiwi :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 11:26am

I remember arguing the year after his Super Bowl that Flacco and Dalton were basically interchangeable, Flacco just had better luck with the timing of his hot streak. At this point, It looks like I may have been overselling Flacco. That’s got to be one of the worst contracts ever.

26
by Will Allen :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 11:59am

At the same time, it is completely understandable that Newsome offered a market rate contract for a top end qb. Flacco had yet to be demonstrably awful yet, albeit on good teams, and, well, 4 good playoff performances resulting in a championship, simply alters the market, no matter how clear eyed and coldly rational a gm aspires to be. Just kind of crappy luck, following the remarkable good luck in that championship season. Sometimes things even out quickly.

31
by Bright Blue Shorts :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:36pm

It's worth also noting that Newsome encountered a similar situation twelve years before when the Ravens won XXXV and Dilfer was out of contract. They chose to cut him rather than pay him. So it's not like Newsome isn't willing to make the tough decision.

38
by MilkmanDanimal :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 1:07pm

Dilfer had also spent years wavering between demonstrably crappy and marginal, and wasn't thought to be a good QB even when the Ravens won the big game. Nobody thought Flacco was actually worth the contract he got, but they thought there was at least a decent possibility he MIGHT be worth the contract he got.

32
by BJR :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:36pm

They did, however, extend Flacco again after the 2015 season (when he tore his ACL). Less forgivable.

33
by Will Allen :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:50pm

Yes, that is less forgiveable, although his one top notch year was 2014.

42
by BJR :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 1:23pm

Yeah. That was the year Gary Kubiak was OC in Baltimore. When you look as well at the good seasons he coaxed out of Matt Schaub - he's probably underrated as a coach.

Edit: Brock Osweiler has also got Kubiak to thank for convincing somebody to make him a very rich man.

40
by theslothook :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 1:12pm

The issue was - Flacco had been in the league a while and those 4 games were a clear anomaly to his usual play. I suspect Ozzie knew this, but was backed into a corner. Losing Flacco would have meant an effective restart for the team(they were in the process of a youth movement anyways).

As for him being extended - remember, Ozzie structured Flacco's contract to escalate down the road so as to smooth over the cap hit. By the time the last years of the contract where there, Flacco had a guarantee of 25 million each of the last two seasons - gruesome cap hits that would have forced him to gut the roster. I think it was Ozzie's plan all along to extend him so as to avoid that ugly cap figure and again smooth it over many years. Its just backfired because Flacco has been a disaster since.

At this point, Ozzie is faced with a pretty extreme choice. Cut Flacco, force a painful year or two rebuild and start again or keep it going and hope the defense improves enough to carry Flacco or Flacco himself improves out of this malaise. I have no faith in the latter happening.

Its also fair to wonder how much longer Flacco will remain the starter.

35
by Raiderjoe :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:53pm

"Flacco and Dalton were basically interchangeable"

this remakr makes think of Bert from Sesam e Street switching spots twih 1950s star Howdy Doody. Howdy Doody would probably like living with Ernie

45
by Mike B. In Va :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 3:10pm

This is one of the finest replies in the history of this site. lol

3
by ChrisLong :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 8:51am

And FO twists the knife in the heart of Packers fans everywhere.

Seriously though, I'd be interested in seeing how non-rookie backups perform in their first appearance (i.e., when they come in because of injury) versus their remaining starts. Is there hope for Packers fans, or does a last-place finish in DYAR in Hundley's first appearance signal the end of days?

5
by rj1 :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 8:54am

"I'd be interested in seeing how non-rookie backups perform in their first appearance (i.e., when they come in because of injury) versus their remaining starts."

Like Brett Favre?

6
by Will Allen :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 9:01am

In that game, Favre was 22 for 39, 289 yards, 2 tds, including the game winner in the final moments, and zero ints.

Hundley has a ways to go.

8
by ChrisLong :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 9:10am

Yes, I think we can cross out "Hall of Famer" as a potential result here.

9
by Will Allen :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 9:41am

Well, I'm not writing the young guy off, either, at this point, but it was remarkable how quickly, growing pains and all, Ol' Stubbleface demonstrated how special he was.

14
by big10freak :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:25am

Mike Holmgren was not a timid coach. He called real plays versus constantly putting his qb in the worst possible situation: 3rd and long on the road against a fierce pass rush with a banged up offensive line

15
by ChrisLong :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:36am

1. Cincinnati that year was 24th (out of 28) in DVOA so let's not say Favre had equal competition to a good Vikings D.

2. GB came into this game with the top run blocking line by ALY, and it wasn't close. He *should* lean on the running game with a new QB.

3. You're suggesting that, without a functional OL and a backup QB who obviously is limited, the Packers would do well to be more aggressive? I think that's nuts. McCarthy catches flak every week for being too aggressive (empty backfields, TOs to get another possession before half, etc.) and now when he is actually playing conservative trying to save his QBs skin because he obviously can't read a blitz at all, you criticize him for not being aggressive enough? Hindsight sure is 20/20.

16
by big10freak :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:43am

I don't recall MM criticizing for being too aggressive. My comments regarding the head coach are that he is great between games but his in game tactics where real time decision making is required are at best uneven.

Doing the conga routine of run, run, throw was helping the Vikes pass rush in a big way.

A first down play action every so often would have helped take some of the edge off the rush. GB has two FA tight ends imported for these very situations. JOrdy Nelson is Mr POssession receiver.

I think on the road in that situation with, per Mike's own words, 3 years invested in a qb you either call the playbook or you don't. Mike didn't. I think that didn't help his guy.

Look, you want to make me out to be the typical kneejerk fan who doesn't understand, has a limited mindset, and overall is just a radio call show dumb*ss that's fine. I just disagree with McCarthy's tactical approach. For which he has history of struggling.

20
by ChrisLong :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 11:19am

I wasn't suggesting that you are a typical fan, just that what you are suggesting is what typical fans have been saying and I think it's simply hindsight and confirmation bias, as many fan reactions tend to be (including mine). I don't follow anyone's comments on here closely enough to characterize anyone as anything more than the comment I'm replying to. I too was decrying McCarthy's strategy, but here's the thing: it wasn't doing horribly all things considered. I just went back through the play-by-play for fun and here's the Packers yards to go on 3rd down after Hundley came in: 2, 5, 6, 7, 6, 7, 1, 2, 8 (goal to go), 4, 4, 10, 5 and then I didn't count the final drive because at that point they had to throw every play. So average distance on 3rd down was 5.15 yards, and the vast majority of those came after two runs. Certainly not a horrible idea to keep running, Hundley just couldn't convert anything. Also for what's it's worth, Hundley's first two INTs came on 3rd and 2.

22
by big10freak :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 11:24am

To be clear I was voicing concern in real time not after the fact

And come third down the Vikes routinely had as many as 10 guys near the LOS. On that first interception you could see it coming as the Vikes were daring the Packers to do anything beyond the immediate LOS. Two players could have intercepted that pass. Blame Hundley for poor recognition but given the situation you can somewhat understand him sticking with the call from the sideline. The second INT I credit as a great play by Harrison. Many of my Packer brethren insist it was a terrible pass.

25
by Will Allen :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 11:46am

I think Harrison indeed made a great play, but Hundley needed to have a lot more arc on the throw, but that is a very typical mistake for a guy seeing action for the 1st time. Keese Cane'im's high ranking this week masks the fact that he also had some terrible throws that a healthy/good secondary may have intercepted. It really easily could have been a very close game.

7
by ChrisLong :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 9:04am

Obviously there are a good many examples of QBs who were good in their careers being good in their first appearance. I was more interested in the prospects of QBs who are bad in their first appearance; what's the range of potential outcomes? Best comparisons for Hundley, who gets dropped into a very good situation presuming the OL returns to health after the bye?

17
by big10freak :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:55am

Rodgers was 8-15 for 65 yards and an interception in relief of Favre end of 2005 season in a blowout loss to Baltimore. He looked terrible and folks then were writing him off. FWIW

That Packer team was awful as Ted had dumped multiple veterans as part of the rebuilding including both starting guards.

30
by Hoodie_Sleeves :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:22pm

Brady was 5/10 for 46 yards in the game Bledsoe got hurt.

13/23 for 168 yards in his first start. (Patriots won that game 44-13 against the Colts on a whole bunch of Manning interceptions, and ~200 yds rushing)

12/24 for 86 yards with 4 sacks in his second start. (lost)

And then in his 3rd start, he went 33/54 for 364 yards and 2 TD. (won in OT against SD)

His 4th start they played the Colts again, and he went 14/20 for 200 yards and 3 TDs (although 91 yards were on 1 play)

I get that Brady isn't really typical as far as anything goes - but yeah, there's some history of good QBs starting with a couple of bad games. Sometimes I think they need that game (like Brady in the OT game in SD) where the coaches are forced to open the offense up.

34
by Raiderjoe :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:50pm

eli manning was el stinko in forst few appearannces as srtarter

51
by Mike B. In Va :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 5:15pm

To the point that people were calling for Coughlin's head for sitting Warner, if I remember. That worked out OK for all involved in the long run, but Eli was *bad* in his first couple of games.

54
by theslothook :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 5:26pm

Eli's first season was an epic disaster and one of the few data points that suggest being patient with rookie qbs.

On the other hand, Gabbert and Bortles are data points in the opposite direction.

24
by Aaron Schatz :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 11:40am

I know at some point we did research showing that, on average, backup QBs were better with a week of preparation than when coming into the middle of a game. But I can't remember when we did it or where the article ran. Sorry.

39
by dryheat :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 1:10pm

That question needed to be researched? Whether a quarterback who practiced like he would be starting would, on average, play better than a quarterback with minimum practice reps (and possibly not paying strict attention during practices/meetings) being thrust into action mid-game? I would think the quarterback who practiced would be batting 1.000 in that scenario.

4
by rj1 :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 8:53am

Surprised Siemian was as close to zero as he was. Thought he had an awful game Sunday night.

65
by Bowl Game Anomaly :: Wed, 10/18/2017 - 2:36pm

Well zero isn't average, it's replacement level, so still pretty bad.

11
by Will Allen :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:18am

Now I really want to go watch the Cards against the Bucs, to see if Peterson gashing them on the 1st series caused the Bucs to go back to the way defenses have normally hyperfocused on him during his career, resulting in Palmer having an easy time of it. As strange as it may sound, I think Peterson's career performance may be a bit underrated, despite his obvious deficiencies in the pass game, blocking in particular. With the Vikings, he had qb play which was not below average for one season, good o-line play for 3, and good receivers for 1. He had a good defense for maybe 3 years. When he played, the team was 68-62.

10
by James-London :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:07am

Ah, the immortal Chris Chambers. That era of Miami football was so much fun...

Phil Simms is a Cretin.

12
by big10freak :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:21am

Surprised Sterling Sharpe was not on the list above. By inspection it was Sharpe and............not much on those Packer teams

13
by drobviousso :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 10:23am

Wow. Bell puts up 179 yards on 32 rushes with a long of only 27 yards, and he doesn't crack the top 5, against the... (looks up KC's rush def), oh -0.8, ranked 24th in the league. I guess that explains it.

21
by lokiwi :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 11:23am

Small edit: The Packers never led; Hundley threw a game-tying touchdown, not a go-ahead.

27
by PatsFan :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 11:59am

So how much was McCown dinged for having to play against the NE pass "defense"?

29
by nat :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:05pm

Why do you write "defense" like that? What are you trying to imply?

Didn't you mean

NE pass """"defense""""?

41
by dryheat :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 1:12pm

I had no issues with the Patriots pass defense this week, given that they were starting Malcolm Butler and two special teamers at cornerback.

49
by Anon Ymous :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 4:53pm

Given all the special teamers in NY's receiving corps, I'd still grade them out as subpar. Finally the run defense looked passable, though. Baby steps. :)

28
by Hoodie_Sleeves :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:04pm

I'd love to see what the coverages Crabtree and Cooper are facing - my intuition says that teams are spending more resources trying to cover Cooper than in the past, and its left Crabtree with more opportunities against lighter cover, while Cooper gets less opportunities, and the ones he get are typically forced.

That being said, I haven't watched any Raiders games, so I could just wrong.

53
by Mike B. In Va :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 5:18pm

I haven't noticed that in the two games I've watched. He just isn't getting open.

36
by ddoubleday :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:55pm

Somehow I knew Bell wouldn't be on the running backs list. DYAR always seems to undervalue strong games by workhorse backs, because they inevitably get stopped here and there, and that gets counted against them more than it should, because the defense focusing so much on them. Certainly Duke Johnson's 5 carries shouldn't be valued above Bell's effort.

43
by D :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 1:31pm

Just out of curiosity what was Tarik Cohen's DYAR for his single pass attempt?

44
by ssereb :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 2:03pm

From the worst running back comment:

"However, Cohen also 27 DYAR passing for his one throw, a 21-yard touchdown to Zach Miller."

59
by D :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 6:01pm

Missed the Stewart entry. Thank you.

46
by bravehoptoad :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 4:30pm

I'm shocked C. J. Beathard had 75 DYAR with a 53% completion rate. I mean...he looked okay in spasms...but 5th for the week? Sheesh.

48
by Vincent Verhei :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 4:53pm

Opponent adjustments, and score gap adjustments. He came into the game trailing 14-0, soon fell behind 17-0, but rallied to tie the game at 17 and would have taken the lead if his kicker hadn't missed a field goal. All against the defense that came into the week 4th in DVOA. Quarterbacks who overcome big deficits against good defenses usually end up with high DYAR.

66
by bravehoptoad :: Wed, 10/18/2017 - 2:54pm

Sure, but 7 of those 49er points were a gift from a Washington fumble returned to the 1-yard line, and 7 more of them came on a 46-yard touchdown pass--a great play, to be sure, but not one you want to count on the guy making every week.

Still...I believe in DYAR. It's giving me way more optimism than anything I actually noticed during the game.

47
by Vincent Verhei :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 4:47pm

Couldn't you find anything more interesting to write about in the initial narrative?

Such as?

On another note, the comments about Stafford were very interesting. Is there an easy way for you to calculate the 1st/2nd/3rd down splits and include them in the comments?

For everyone? In every comment? No. This isn't just going to be a massive data dump every Monday night. Our passing worksheet already has more than 400,000 cells of data. That's almost 67,000 cells per week. We can't put everything out there. We'll try to point out the most extreme splits.

If you are interested in season-long team-level DVOA data splits, I recommend a premium subscription. See this page for more info:

https://www.footballoutsiders.com/store/premium-access

Surprised Sterling Sharpe was not on the list above. By inspection it was Sharpe and............not much on those Packer teams

He came close a couple of times. He had 391 more DYAR than Perry Kemp in 1989. In 1992, he had 395 DYAR while Sanjay Beach had -111. That's a difference of 506 DYAR. However, Beach only had 35 targets, and so didn't qualify for our tables, which kept Sharpe out of the discussion for this essay. Beach wasn't a big part of that Green Bay offense, just a very terrible small part (caught less than half his targets and averaged just 7.2 yards per reception).

Small edit: The Packers never led; Hundley threw a game-tying touchdown, not a go-ahead.

Indeed. Fixed.

Somehow I knew Bell wouldn't be on the running backs list. DYAR always seems to undervalue strong games by workhorse backs, because they inevitably get stopped here and there, and that gets counted against them more than it should, because the defense focusing so much on them. Certainly Duke Johnson's 5 carries shouldn't be valued above Bell's effort.

1) Bell had a strong *rushing* day. He had -12 DYAR receiving (3-of-6, 12 yards, no first downs, one successful catch).

2) Really, though, he was just screwed by opponent adjustments, because Kansas City's defense has been terrible against the run this year (24th against the run coming into the week, and sure to drop even lower after this). Bell was seventh in with 25 rushing DYAR this week, but he was first by a mile with 68 YAR -- Jay Ajayi was second with 36. Nobody else had even half Bell's total.

63
by Raiderfan :: Wed, 10/18/2017 - 7:15am

"Couldn't you find anything more interesting to write about in the initial narrative?
Such as?"

Anything that did not make me feel even worse than I already do about the way the Raiders season is going.

64
by bravehoptoad :: Wed, 10/18/2017 - 12:04pm

Couldn't you find anything more interesting to write about in the initial narrative?

Such as?

Politics in the NFL?

Deflategate reprised?

Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy?

50
by t.d. :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 5:08pm

I will say again, it kills me that the Jags haven't at least called (Kaep/rg3/Josh freeman/the pats about Jimmy). Especially the running quarterbacks, who would open things up for Fournette. Like Denver, they're spinning their wheels while a championship caliber defense goes wasted (the two special teams touchdowns given up this week didn't help this week, either). Marrone's cut the kicker today for missing two 54-yarders, another move that doesn't inspire confidence (if he's to blame for kicking to Pharoah Cooper, I'm ok with it, but it seems like a move designed to get the locker room's attention, and I don't love coaching through Kabuki). This is a 12-4 type defense; it'd be a shame to waste it on Bortles

52
by Mike B. In Va :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 5:17pm

Marrone loves locker room kabuki. GM kabuki, too.

They have a really good defense, for sure. A really good Bills defense got him to 7-9 and 8-8, so we'll see if he learned anything.

56
by t.d. :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 5:41pm

It appears that Coughlin's calling the shots on personnel, at least. Jags defense, like Denver's, has scored a lot so far- 4 TDS, plus they probably lost one this week to an inadvertent whistle- I actually think this is an upgrade on those Bills defenses (though they were good). The skill position talent is really good, too, except for Bortles. The line is adequate, after years of struggles. They've got one game against a team with a winning record left, and they're going to waste this great opportunity

55
by theslothook :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 5:27pm

That defense already looks to have an all time pass defense. I'll be curious to see where they finish at the end of the year, but man - its showing what dominant cb play can do for a defense.

57
by t.d. :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 5:52pm

The line's great, too, and both safeties are outstanding. Depending on how you feel about Paul Posluzny, they don't really have any weak spots. It's funny, they hired Gus Bradley to build a defense like Seattle's and only after they fired him did they get there. Dude just had bad luck

58
by theslothook :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 6:00pm

Whenever a team begins in the depths of despair - the incumbent coach is usually the sacrificial lamb. See Dennis Allen with the Raiders and soon to be Hue Jackson and the Browns.

Are the safeties good? Barry Church was an unheralded signing from Dallas.

I knew Campbell was doing well, but I had no idea about Fowler or Jackson. Interestingly, none of them are prototypical edge rushers.

60
by t.d. :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 6:16pm

Definitely an upgrade over jonathan cyprien, who always freelanced and got penalties at the worst possible times. Fowler and Ngakoue were drafted to rush the passer, but Jackson and, especially, Campbell have really helped those guys. Campbell really ought to be front-runner for dpoy so far

61
by theslothook :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 6:19pm

Hmm, over Jalen Ramsay?

62
by t.d. :: Tue, 10/17/2017 - 7:30pm

Ramsey's been great, and the secondary is probably the strength of the team, but Campbell has made more of the splashy type plays that get dpoy attention (sacks, forced fumbles). Ramsey and Bouye have both been excellent at blanketing opposing receivers, but he isn't going to end up with any stats (teams won't throw at him, and if he has a weakness, it's catching the ball)

67
by drillz :: Thu, 10/19/2017 - 6:11pm

Year Team Best WR DYAR Worst WR DYAR Difference Quarterback W-L Playoffs

2014 GB Jordy Nelson 482 Davante Adams 19 463 Jordy Nelson 12-4 Lost NFC Champ

68
by Vincent Verhei :: Fri, 10/20/2017 - 6:54pm

You never knew he was so talented, did you?

69
by Bobman :: Sun, 10/22/2017 - 2:35am

How is it possible that Delanie Walker had a worse night than Jack Doyle? I'm not arguing... just trying to figure it out. Doyle had, what, 2-3 drops and a fumble? (I think one of the drops was initially ruled a fumble. I was poised to throw something through my TV set. NOt often you cheer for your TE to have a drop!) Surely the two worst TEs in Week 6 were in the same game. I wonder how often that kind of thing happens....

70
by Vincent Verhei :: Mon, 10/23/2017 - 5:23pm

Very late reply since I just saw this, but: Doyle had -20 DYAR. Not in the bottom 10 WRs/TEs for the week. Finished with 7 catches in 11 targets for 50 yards. He did have a fumble, but that was basically offset by his touchdown, and he had three other first downs. Drops count the same as any other incomplete pass in DYAR/DVOA.