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Analysis: Edge Rusher and Sacks are Irrelevant to Going to Super Bowl


johnnysd
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3 minutes ago, FidelioJet said:

Yup...

We failed because we can't score points.  The Jets should be focusing virtually every resource to offense.  

The teams that consistently get into the playoffs do it with offense - then you just have to get hot when you're there.  

We hope we have the long-awaited FQB - now just go and build an offense around him. 

I have to be honest, I don't understand this obsession with edge rushers our fan base has - we have been so bad, for so long - with a singular focus on defense.  Let's try something new.  

Failing to acquire a pass rusher is not a legitimate reason to stop trying to find one.

And in any case, you're wrong.  We haven't taken that many shots at a pass rusher.  We've taken defensive players at non-premium positions that have little to do with getting to the QB.  Box safeties, injury-prone corners, interior linemen....those were bad picks. 

It's as if the Gholston mistake scared us off for over a decade.  The closest thing we've done to even try to get one since then was the Quinton Coples pick. 

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2 minutes ago, FidelioJet said:

Yup...

We failed because we can't score points.  The Jets should be focusing virtually every resource to offense.  

The teams that consistently get into the playoffs do it with offense - then you just have to get hot when you're there.  

We hope we have the long-awaited FQB - now just go and build an offense around him. 

I have to be honest, I don't understand this obsession with edge rushers our fan base has - we have been so bad, for so long - with a singular focus on defense.  Let's try something new. 

Okay. Who? Yeah, I know, trade down. Brilliant. Who?

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2 minutes ago, nyjunc said:

And a week later we couldn't touch Gannon

Fair.  Pass rushers don't always get to the QB.  But you still need them if you want a shot at a title. 

Saying pass rushers aren't needed because they fail in the playoffs sometimes is like saying you don't need a franchise QB because guys like Rodgers, Manning, and Brees have lost a lot of playoff games. 

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2 hours ago, NYs Stepchild said:

Their were a lot of edge rushers worth top 3 but how many actually went top 3 and were worth it? 

Clowney went #1 and MAck 5. 

Oh ok. Misunderstood. Actually no I didn’t, he said worth not picked at. I would trade our third for Mack right now. 

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3 hours ago, kdels62 said:

You should probably check overall pressures, and then also scoring defense, and then if you check passing defense you’ll find out that CBs are probably the second most important position on the field. 

I think the better metric for correlation is points given up per game re pressure, sacks, YAC, etc. And it would also be interesting to see if edge vs. interior pressure/sacks matters. I would think it depends on the QB's style. Mobile QB vs. pocket QB requires different attack scheme.

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Having a guy who could get off his blocks would have been huge for those 2009 and ‘10 seasons.

As it stood, when we didn’t blitz or the blitz failed, QBs had all day to throw. We had to go to the garbage bin and bring in that Bills bust (can’t remember his name) because we needed a situational pass rusher so badly.
The wonderful Aaron Maybin ...

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obviously the Jets want to trade down and draft 11 pro bowlers. 
 
the question is what happens when the offers stink and you have to take a player at 3? 
cause most likely they are going to make that pick, despite wanting to trade down 
using this logic they need "offense"  who exactly is that pick at 3? 
If it had to be offense, and had to be at 3 (no trade down), you're probably looking at Jawaan Taylor for O line if you are dead set on a tackle, Jonah Williams if you want OL and aren't too bothered about tackle vs. interior. Skill positions it's the likes of Metcalf, Hockenson.

Not exactly a compelling set of options.

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16 minutes ago, Miss Lonelyhearts said:

I dunno why otherwise reasonable people are having such a hard time with this. The problem isn't drafting defense. It's drafting bad. If you miss on the pick why does it make a goddamned difference which side of the ball it was on?

Further, the thought that taking 1 player on offense in the draft changes everything the Jets have done for the past 20 years is so bizarre.  And then they all want to point to these juggernaut offensive teams and virtually none of them draft offense in the 1st round and if they have, it's like 1 or 2 picks over the past 10+ years. 

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Honestly I don’t give a chit about the defense anymore.  Rex, Bowles, Kyle Wilson, I’m done.  Give me an offense heavy draft.  We have an elite DC, he should be able to make due.  We have a 21 year old kid taking snaps, he needs the help more.

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I recall Bruce Smith being invisible in their SB runs until I believe their last run.

This happens for whatever reason, be it game plan surprises etc. That being said, it doesn’t mean you don’t draft pass rushers high.

That’s like some people said Revis wasn’t worth the money(before injury) because CB isn’t a premium position...




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1 hour ago, Jetsfan80 said:

I'd say its one of the top 3 reasons we've failed as a franchise. 

Remember when we pounded Peyton Manning into submission in the 2002 playoffs?  I was at that game, and Manning was on the ground so often, his jersey had spots of paint from the midfield NFL logo that had rubbed off al over him.  We had multiple guys who could get after the QB that year. 

It's crucial,  The 3rd most important aspect of a successful team after QB and protecting your QB.  Yet somehow Jets fans have a blindspot on just HOW important it is.

look at the Qbs we've trotted out there and tell me we failed cos of EDGE...    ROFLMAO

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9 hours ago, johnnysd said:

All I have been hearing lately is how important "Edge Rushers" are and how vital sacks are to winning, so I did some research to see if that is true. I looked at 5 years and stats show that having a Top Edge Rusher or having a team with a lot of stats is almost completely unrelated to getting to the SB outside of a one outlier season.

Sacks are flashy. They are like a mini turnover and are exciting. But they really have little relation to success in the NFL.

From a team perspective, there is only about a 14 sack difference between #1 and middle of the pack. Less than 1 a game: 2018:13 2017:18 2016:14 2015:14 2014:15

So lets look at total sack rankings for the last 5 Super Bowls:

TOTAL SACKS, TEAM

2018: NE 30th, Rams 15th 

2017: NE T7th Phil T15th

2016 Both T16th

2015 DEN #1 CAR #6

2014: NE 13th SEA 20th 

CONCLUSION: So for the last 10 Super Bowl teams, only 3 have been Top 10 and 1 has been #1. The 2015 Denver team did have Peyton Manning but Denver did win the SB on QB pressure and sacks

2015 definitely the outlier here as both were Top 10 teams in sacks, But only 1 in the other 4 Super Bowls. Not a very high attach rate at all. Mostly average teams in sacks are making the SB

TOP 10 SACK LEADERS

But what about those elite sack "edge" guys so coveted? Lets look at the number of Top 10 sack guys in the last 5 Super Bowls

2018: Aaron Donald #1  Interestingly not an "edge guy". But did the Rams make the SB because of Donald??

2017: 0

2016: 0

2015: Von Miller, Short both T8th

2014: 0 - Interestingly, the two best sack guys in the SB were #26 and #36 in the NFL

CONCLUSION: Again on the last 10 SB teams, only 3 Top 10 pass rushers played. Again 2015 is the outlier with 2, and Donald sticks out because he was #1 but likely not why they made the Super Bowl. Very low attach rate here as well.

What does matter?

OFFENSE AND QBS

Let's look at PTS/G averages for the last 10 SB participants:

2018: #2 and #4

2017: #2 and #3

2016: #11 and #3

2015 #16 and #11

2014: #4 and #10

CONCLUSION: Strong correlation here. 7 of the last 10 teams in the SB were in the Top 10 in PTS/G. If we extend that only 1 spot, only a single team was not in the Top 11 in offense for that year. This is very meaningful. Essentially if you are not a Top 10 offense in the NFL your odds of making the SB are very, very slim

We all know that QBs are the most important player in football. Do the numbers bear that out:

QB TOTAL QBR

2018: Brady 6th. Goff 10th

2017 Brady 3rd, Wentz 1st *(obviously Foles played in the playoffs and SB but his QB play essentially won the SB and Philly got there in great part because of Wentz)

2016 Ryan 1st, Brady 3rd

2015 Newton #11 Osweiler 20th/ Manning 28th

2014 Brady #3 Wilson #6

CONCLUSION: What you would expect. Top 10 QBs get to the SB. Again 2015 is the outlier, and these stats are skewed by Brady showing up so much, but you can't deny he is the main player reason NE gets to the SB.

OVERALL THOUGHTS: SACKS ARE SERIOUSLY OVERRATED, THE NFL IS ALL ABOUT QB and OFFENSE

Recent history suggests that sacks, both from a team perspective and from an individual standpoint are really not directly related AT ALL to making the SB. In fact the difference from average to Top Team sacks is less than one a game. With only 3 teams or 30% of teams with top sacks even getting to the Super Bowl, you could make a good argument that even if you are already average at sacks, adding a player that adds 10 additional sacks won't really increase your odds on getting to the SB.. In terms of the Jets, we have not been horrible at sacks, usually around middle of the pack, 15th last year. So the thought that adding a Bosa or Allen to the Jets will increase odds of wins and getting to the SB are weak at best. It just doesn't seem to track.

Offense does however. As mentioned you pretty much need to be Top 11 in offense to make the SB.  We were 23rd last year with 20.8 points per game. To get to #11 is 4.3 points a game, #10 5.1 points per game. So our offense needs to be almost two FGs a game better. Or looked at a different way, our offense needs to be 25% better

We all expect Darnold to be better, and we have Bell and Crowder, but if we really want to make the SB we need Darnold be a Top 10 guy in Total QBR and our offense to be Top 10, so we really really need to focus on improving the offense as much as possible.  Bosa, QW or Allen are not going to move the bar as much as improving our offense, so i(f possible) historical evidence shows we should try and trade down, shore up the OL and try to get another playmaker

Thoughts on 2015 season: It is totally an outlier. I havent had the chance to see if a significant rule change happened in 2016, or if weather played a huge role in the playoffs that year, but you can look at that season and see that it might have been the passing of the guard from defense winning Championships to offense winning championships.

When you look at it objectively all the attention paid to "edge" rushers, and statements like "2nd most important player on the field" just don't hold water. Disclaimer: I realize this is not rigorous statistical analysis but it does some simple correlations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

coaches want pressures.  they will take sacks, of course.  But they want pressures. They do not count sacks

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41 minutes ago, Jetmech said:

I recall Bruce Smith being invisible in their SB runs until I believe their last run.

This happens for whatever reason, be it game plan surprises etc. That being said, it doesn’t mean you don’t draft pass rushers high.

That’s like some people said Revis wasn’t worth the money(before injury) because CB isn’t a premium position...




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if Bruce was being neutralized, someone else was generating the pressures, then.

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31 minutes ago, Losmeister said:

look at the Qbs we've trotted out there and tell me we failed cos of EDGE...    ROFLMAO

I never argued that EDGE is more important than QB.

However, we have our QB now.  And since there does not appear to be a franchise LT in this draft, EDGE or pass-rushing DT makes a ton of sense with our 1st rounder, wherever we end up falling.  In fact, its become basically a necessity.

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1 hour ago, Jetmech said:

I recall Bruce Smith being invisible in their SB runs until I believe their last run.

This happens for whatever reason, be it game plan surprises etc. That being said, it doesn’t mean you don’t draft pass rushers high.

That’s like some people said Revis wasn’t worth the money(before injury) because CB isn’t a premium position...




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Didn’t Bruce Smith get a safety in the Scott Norwood game?

 

46CD49B8-0293-4091-99AE-EC1481977E3D.jpeg

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4 hours ago, Jetsfan80 said:

Julius Peppers.  Justin Smith.  Chris Long.  Mario Williams.  Khalil Mack.  Joey Bosa (28.5 sacks in 35 games).  Clowney has 29 sacks and just got franchise tagged by the team that drafted him.  So far, Myles Garrett has been worth the 2017 # 1 pick (20.5 sacks, 4 FF, 1 FR, 4 PD, 47 QB Hits, 21 TFL).  Bradley Chubb was taken 5th last year, and put up 12 sacks. 

Suh isn't an edge rusher, but since he's a pass-rushing DT, I'd include him in that analysis too. 

Well that one was easy.  Got anything else you need from me?  If not I'll get back to my day job.

Yeah this thread is a mega-fail

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10 hours ago, johnnysd said:

All I have been hearing lately is how important "Edge Rushers" are and how vital sacks are to winning, so I did some research to see if that is true. I looked at 5 years and stats show that having a Top Edge Rusher or having a team with a lot of stats is almost completely unrelated to getting to the SB outside of a one outlier season.

Sacks are flashy. They are like a mini turnover and are exciting. But they really have little relation to success in the NFL.

From a team perspective, there is only about a 14 sack difference between #1 and middle of the pack. Less than 1 a game: 2018:13 2017:18 2016:14 2015:14 2014:15

So lets look at total sack rankings for the last 5 Super Bowls:

TOTAL SACKS, TEAM

2018: NE 30th, Rams 15th 

2017: NE T7th Phil T15th

2016 Both T16th

2015 DEN #1 CAR #6

2014: NE 13th SEA 20th 

CONCLUSION: So for the last 10 Super Bowl teams, only 3 have been Top 10 and 1 has been #1. The 2015 Denver team did have Peyton Manning but Denver did win the SB on QB pressure and sacks

2015 definitely the outlier here as both were Top 10 teams in sacks, But only 1 in the other 4 Super Bowls. Not a very high attach rate at all. Mostly average teams in sacks are making the SB

TOP 10 SACK LEADERS

But what about those elite sack "edge" guys so coveted? Lets look at the number of Top 10 sack guys in the last 5 Super Bowls

2018: Aaron Donald #1  Interestingly not an "edge guy". But did the Rams make the SB because of Donald??

2017: 0

2016: 0

2015: Von Miller, Short both T8th

2014: 0 - Interestingly, the two best sack guys in the SB were #26 and #36 in the NFL

CONCLUSION: Again on the last 10 SB teams, only 3 Top 10 pass rushers played. Again 2015 is the outlier with 2, and Donald sticks out because he was #1 but likely not why they made the Super Bowl. Very low attach rate here as well.

What does matter?

OFFENSE AND QBS

Let's look at PTS/G averages for the last 10 SB participants:

2018: #2 and #4

2017: #2 and #3

2016: #11 and #3

2015 #16 and #11

2014: #4 and #10

CONCLUSION: Strong correlation here. 7 of the last 10 teams in the SB were in the Top 10 in PTS/G. If we extend that only 1 spot, only a single team was not in the Top 11 in offense for that year. This is very meaningful. Essentially if you are not a Top 10 offense in the NFL your odds of making the SB are very, very slim

We all know that QBs are the most important player in football. Do the numbers bear that out:

QB TOTAL QBR

2018: Brady 6th. Goff 10th

2017 Brady 3rd, Wentz 1st *(obviously Foles played in the playoffs and SB but his QB play essentially won the SB and Philly got there in great part because of Wentz)

2016 Ryan 1st, Brady 3rd

2015 Newton #11 Osweiler 20th/ Manning 28th

2014 Brady #3 Wilson #6

CONCLUSION: What you would expect. Top 10 QBs get to the SB. Again 2015 is the outlier, and these stats are skewed by Brady showing up so much, but you can't deny he is the main player reason NE gets to the SB.

OVERALL THOUGHTS: SACKS ARE SERIOUSLY OVERRATED, THE NFL IS ALL ABOUT QB and OFFENSE

Recent history suggests that sacks, both from a team perspective and from an individual standpoint are really not directly related AT ALL to making the SB. In fact the difference from average to Top Team sacks is less than one a game. With only 3 teams or 30% of teams with top sacks even getting to the Super Bowl, you could make a good argument that even if you are already average at sacks, adding a player that adds 10 additional sacks won't really increase your odds on getting to the SB.. In terms of the Jets, we have not been horrible at sacks, usually around middle of the pack, 15th last year. So the thought that adding a Bosa or Allen to the Jets will increase odds of wins and getting to the SB are weak at best. It just doesn't seem to track.

Offense does however. As mentioned you pretty much need to be Top 11 in offense to make the SB.  We were 23rd last year with 20.8 points per game. To get to #11 is 4.3 points a game, #10 5.1 points per game. So our offense needs to be almost two FGs a game better. Or looked at a different way, our offense needs to be 25% better

We all expect Darnold to be better, and we have Bell and Crowder, but if we really want to make the SB we need Darnold be a Top 10 guy in Total QBR and our offense to be Top 10, so we really really need to focus on improving the offense as much as possible.  Bosa, QW or Allen are not going to move the bar as much as improving our offense, so i(f possible) historical evidence shows we should try and trade down, shore up the OL and try to get another playmaker

Thoughts on 2015 season: It is totally an outlier. I havent had the chance to see if a significant rule change happened in 2016, or if weather played a huge role in the playoffs that year, but you can look at that season and see that it might have been the passing of the guard from defense winning Championships to offense winning championships.

When you look at it objectively all the attention paid to "edge" rushers, and statements like "2nd most important player on the field" just don't hold water. Disclaimer: I realize this is not rigorous statistical analysis but it does some simple correlations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Such ownage this thread is. 

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4 hours ago, BroadwayRay said:

This is why I wouldn’t mind if the Jets trade down and devote all their high picks to offense. Fans love the thrill of the QB sack and as a result they have a somewhat inflated view of the impact of pass rushers. 

Fans also love the thrill of the touchdown. Dumb fans.

4 hours ago, Jetsfan80 said:

I'd argue that some fans underrate the importance of pass rush because they only see it in terms of how many sacks are generated.

Pressure generates turnovers.  Pressure generates 3 and outs.  It doesn't just generate sacks. 

Without an organic pass rush, we're relying on our defensive coordinator to constantly send blitz packages that the offense doesn't expect, and thus putting extra strain on our secondary.  That only worked for a little while with Rex Ryan before the league figured out what he was doing. 

With a legit pass rusher Rex may very well still be HC here.

2 hours ago, Jetsfan80 said:

I'd say its one of the top 3 reasons we've failed as a franchise. 

Remember when we pounded Peyton Manning into submission in the 2002 playoffs?  I was at that game, and Manning was on the ground so often, his jersey had spots of paint from the midfield NFL logo that had rubbed off al over him.  We had multiple guys who could get after the QB that year. 

It's crucial,  The 3rd most important aspect of a successful team after QB and protecting your QB.  Yet somehow Jets fans have a blindspot on just HOW important it is.

Yeah but those safeties and FBs though.

2 hours ago, Jetsfan80 said:

Fair.  Pass rushers don't always get to the QB.  But you still need them if you want a shot at a title. 

Saying pass rushers aren't needed because they fail in the playoffs sometimes is like saying you don't need a franchise QB because guys like Rodgers, Manning, and Brees have lost a lot of playoff games. 

Offense gets you to playoffs, defense gets you a ring. Need balance. But need both.

1 hour ago, jmat321 said:

Honestly I don’t give a chit about the defense anymore.  Rex, Bowles, Kyle Wilson, I’m done.  Give me an offense heavy draft.  We have an elite DC, he should be able to make due.  We have a 21 year old kid taking snaps, he needs the help more.

See above.

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The bottom line is if you can get pressure on a QB you control what he can do and how fast. That's how the Giants beat the Pats twice, put pressure on Brady. How many times have the Jets lost because their defense gives up big drives late in games when the QB has all day in the pocket. This thread is ridiculous, you don't trade down if Bosa or Allen are there at 3 you grab them and move on. All the people here wanting to trade out of 3 will be very unhappy if these two players become game changers. There are no sure things in the Draft, however picking higher gives you a better chance.

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1 minute ago, GaryM said:

The bottom line is if you can get pressure on a QB you control what he can do and how fast. That's how the Giants beat the Pats twice, put pressure on Brady. How many times have the Jets lost because their defense gives up big drives late in games when the QB has all day in the pocket. This thread is ridiculous, you don't trade down if Bosa or Allen are there at 3 you grab them and move on. All the people here wanting to trade out of 3 will be very unhappy if these two players become game changers. There are no sure things in the Draft, however picking higher gives you a better chance.

Jets “defensive-minded HCs” love the freaking prevent up one score with seven minutes left in the game.

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7 hours ago, Jetsfan80 said:

Say what you will about the Rams’ Super Bowl performance, but they loaded up on pass rushers for a reason. Even WITH Donald on the roster, they went out and grabbed Suh and Dante Fowler.

 

They did this because they understand this simple truth: Once you have a QB, one of the top priorities is trying to stop the other QB on the field and get the ball back to your offense. And the best way to do that is by putting pressure on the QB without always having to rely on blitzes and “out-scheming” the other coach. It may not always lead to a bunch of sacks, but it can definitely lead to some bad decisions by the opposing QB.

 

So you see, the Rams were ultimately smart to invest in multiple pass rushers. Meanwhile, our best pass rusher is Brandon Copeland. Good luck with that, Gregg Williams.

The Rams had a stacked offense, not just a QB, but they have a top 3 RB in the league, one of the best young slot receivers in the league, picked up one of the best (but old) LT's in the league, turned Robert Woods into one of the best WR's in the league, and while adding Suh in free agency they made sure to trade a 1st round pick for Brandin Cooks. 

It's more than "once having a QB". They put many of those offensive pieces in place before even going out and getting Suh and Fowler. And even when they did that they were willing to trade a 1st round pick for yet another offensive weapon to put around that QB given that they were hoping to make that 1st round pick the 32 pick in the draft. 

 

Quarterback isnt the entire offense. We like to think so because we're used to constantly hearing and seeing the handful of elites in this league. But Jared Goff is a system QB if there ever was one. Without that head coach and that talent Goff would be exposed if he was on a team like the Jets. The Rams have done a great job of managing Goff's limitations, maximizing his ability while putting tons of talent around him offensively. 

Also, when Sean McVay took over as HC of the Rams, he didn't go hunting relentlessly in the draft for pass rushers. He already had Goff, so you know what he did? 2 of his first 3 draft picks in 2017 were offense, which included the 1st pick they made. The same thing with the 2018 draft. The first pick was an offensive pick and 2 of the first 3 picks went to the offense. Why? Because the defense already had talent. 

You got to tell the entire story, and it was more than just Jared Goff. We all know Goff is a system QB in the perfect storm of a great situation. 

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A lot of people have transitioned the discussion to "pressures" instead of sacks. The stat is super difficult to find. There is a Buffalo reporter that collates the pressure data during the season so I was able to find stats for 2018. Not sure why the top column is not aligned.

Pressures Drop Backs faced Pressure Rate
Los Angeles Rams 241 601 40.09983361
Philadelphia Eagles 279 703 39.68705548
Jacksonville Jaguars 207 548 37.77372263
Baltimore Ravens 241 640 37.65625
Chicago Bears 258 691 37.33719247
Buffalo Bills 203 547 37.11151737
Pittsburgh Steelers 233 638 36.52037618
Minnesota Vikings 213 585 36.41025641
Green Bay Packers 215 598 35.95317726
Kansas City Chiefs 251 701 35.80599144
New England Patriots 236 664 35.54216867
New York Jets 230 649 35.43913713
Carolina Panthers 205 592 34.62837838
San Francisco 49ers 210 608 34.53947368
Washington Redskins 209 616 33.92857143
New Orleans Saints 220 653 33.6906585
Dallas Cowboys 205 613 33.44208809
Miami Dolphins 190 569 33.39191564
Los Angeles Chargers 205 616 33.27922078
Denver Broncos 201 606 33.16831683
Arizona Cardinals 185 579 31.95164076
New York Giants 197 617 31.9286872
Indianapolis Colts 191 607 31.46622735
Houston Texans 212 676 31.36094675
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 185 590 31.3559322
Seattle Seahawks 189 609 31.03448276
Cincinnati Bengals 197 640 30.78125
Cleveland Browns 209 694 30.11527378
Tennessee Titans 181 602 30.06644518
Atlanta Falcons 191 644 29.65838509
Detroit Lions 158 544 29.04411765
Oakland Raiders 120 514 23.3463035

Some interesting things to look at, keeping in mind these are stats for only one season :

The Rams were first, so maybe pressures do help to get to the SB.

That said though, the numbers are really packed, which would suggest maybe pressures is not that significant OR that just a couple extra a game is significant. But as bad as we think our pass rush is, we are solidly middle of the pack and only 2% from 3rd. If they are 70 offensive playes thats 1.5 pressures a game. Is that really all that game changing? I suspect not.

I truly believe we get seduced by games that ARE won by an edge rusher like Von Miller in the SB, the Giants rush over NE, but I am still not convinced at all that games tilting because of pass rush is really as big of a thing as people think.

The stats above except for the Raiders! (wonder why?) and the bottom 8 are pretty homogenous.

 

 

 

 

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I think some are falling into this "must draft offense" mindset. 

In many ways, it is the correct line of thinking in today's game.   Most ways actually.

However, taking a blue chip defensive prospect at #3 does not mean Macc can't focus the remainder of the draft on offense.

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