Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

08 Nov 2007

ESPN Numbers Crunching: Week 10

Here's our latest look at Sunday's matchups through the eyes of the FO stats. Learn about the disappearance of Alge Crumpler and why the Vikings-Packers contest ain't over 'til it's over. Unfortunately, they cut my joke that "Chicago is last in the league defending slot receivers, while Oakland is last in the league in slot receivers anybody has heard of." Thanks to Ryan Wilson for doing a large part of this week's article while I was busy running around Philadelphia and South Jersey (details of that to come in tomorrow's TDZ).

Posted by: Aaron Schatz on 08 Nov 2007

14 comments, Last at 09 Nov 2007, 2:35pm by mshray


by Cosmos (not verified) :: Thu, 11/08/2007 - 7:36pm

If Dallas wins they could win 13 or more games this year. They just seem to being winning easy. I feel like I'm watching the Eagles at their peak. Just executing.

by zip (not verified) :: Thu, 11/08/2007 - 7:50pm

I don't get the joke :(

by Spoilt Victorian Child (not verified) :: Thu, 11/08/2007 - 7:53pm

Miami should do whatever it can to keep its defense off the field, which means rushing the ball, preferably inside.
That's a good idea, but the refs probably have replacement balls.

by B (not verified) :: Thu, 11/08/2007 - 8:08pm

The 49ers are really good at punting. Well, at least they can do something right, and they've had plenty of practice at it.

by dmb (not verified) :: Thu, 11/08/2007 - 8:39pm

4: Not only that, but their entire team is built to emphasize their strengths!!!

Er, strength.

by podpeople (not verified) :: Thu, 11/08/2007 - 9:16pm

what happened to the madden simulations? I loved those things.

by Staubach12 (not verified) :: Thu, 11/08/2007 - 9:50pm

#3: Good one.
Aaron, I think they were right to cut out your joke. It is a rare strike-out for you.

by Temo (not verified) :: Fri, 11/09/2007 - 2:44am

The Romo thing is more or less explained by the fact that he's at his best rolling to his right (he's a righty, so obviously) and in the beginning of the season teams thought he'd run and he'd throw deep passes down the field.
Ever since the buffalo game though he doesn't get outside the pocket as much unless it's a designed boot (of which they are doing more of) and all those boots are to his right. Opponents are definitely trying to keep him pinned in the pocket so he can't pressure the DBs into committing to either the pass or the run as much as they have in the past.

by emcee fleshy (atl/sd) (not verified) :: Fri, 11/09/2007 - 2:47am

Alge's disappearance might be due to . . . his actual disappearance.

Injuries and DNP's aren't good for the statsheet.

by register_allocation (not verified) :: Fri, 11/09/2007 - 3:51am

#1 -- The Cowboys have played 6 teams this year that (right now) are under 0.500 (including the winless Rams and Dolphins).

Their upcoming schedule includes the Giants, Packers, Redskins (twice), and Lions. I'm not saying they won't get to 13 wins, but their second half is a bit harder than the first...

by Israel (not verified) :: Fri, 11/09/2007 - 7:19am

Browns' offense is fourth in the NFL in late-and-close situations (second half, score within eight points), while the Steelers' defense is 25th in similar situations.

The Steelers have had only two such games - the Cardinals game and a bit of the Denver game. So doing poorly in a situation they rarely find themselves in, is not much of an indictment.

by sam (not verified) :: Fri, 11/09/2007 - 11:21am

The "intel report" for Jax/TEN is a little interesting. They picked TEN as having the advantage in QB and ST as well as receivers. I think the JAX receivers are at least average as a group. Vince Young is a terrible passer and we have no idea if their receivers are any good it seems to me.

JAX: 9th DPAR/2nd DVOA if Garrard plays, 39th in DPAR if Gray plays... TEN: 41st

Special Teams
JAX: 6 (even w/ a backup kicker and having played a game without a PK); TEN: 26

Seems to me the advantage is Jax in those two categories.

by MRH (not verified) :: Fri, 11/09/2007 - 2:12pm

Last year, the Falcons threw the ball to their TE 29% of the time. When Petrino was last seen in the NFL as an OC w/JAX in 2001, he threw it to the TE 14%. The decline in the usage of Crumpler was predictable from the change in the offensive system in ATL as well as from his own aging and nagging injuries.

Thru the 1st six games, Crumpler had 3-6 targets every game. But he and the ATL TE's as a group were only seeing 17% of the pass targets in that period, before Crumpler had two games lost to injury. (My target %s ignore throwaways and the odd pass to an OL).

by mshray (not verified) :: Fri, 11/09/2007 - 2:35pm

I think the joke works if Aaron adds a word - “Chicago is last in the league defending slot receivers, while Oakland is last in the league in having slot receivers anybody has heard of.�