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Our Amazing Defensive Turnaround

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by JJDChE, Dec 22, 2005.

  1. JJDChE

    JJDChE Rookie

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    With the recent resurgence of our defense I went back and looked how things have progressed throughout the year. There is a dramatic split between the first three the games (OAK, CAR, PIT/when Harrison went down) the proceeding 8 games (SD thru KC), and then again in the last 3 games. I think everyone has had a sense that this was the case, but looking at the numbers it's even more pronounced than I ever imagined.

    Here are the stats from the Middle 8 games vs. First 3/Last 3. After each stat, in parentheses, is where that number would rank in the NFL overall.

    Code:
                      Mid 8 Games    First3/Last3  
    ------------------------------------------------
    Points/Game        26.5 (#29)      12.8 (#2)
    Yards per Game    424.0 (#32)     225.8 (#1)
    Yards per play     6.28 (#32)      4.04 (#1)
    3rd Down Conv.	  47.2% (#31)     31.3% (#4)
    T.O.P.            33:41 (#32)     25:07 (#1)
    1st Downs/Game     23.6 (#32)      13.7 (#1)
    Pass Yds/Game     295.0 (#32)     165.8 (#1)
    Comp %            64.9% (#31)     44.9% (#1)
    Yards/Attempt      8.96 (#32)      5.27 (#1)
    Pass TD/Game        2.0 (#31)       1.0 (#8)
    INT/Game             .5 (#30)       1.0 (#15)
    Sack/Game           1.1 (#32)       3.0 (#3)
    Rush Yds/Game       129 (#27)        60 (#1)            
    Rush yds/Attempt   3.97 (#15)      2.65 (#1)    
    Rush TD/Game        0.9 (#21)       0.5 (#4)
    Talk about night and day, in the mid-8 game stretch we were essentially the worst defense in the NFL, in the first 3/Last 3 we have been essentially the best defense in the NFL.

    One of the amazing things is just how striking the splits are when you break it down. Literally, after the third game everything fell appart and after the 11th game everything came together. Look at the yardage totals per game, in order:

    1. 351
    2. 250
    3. 269
    4. 431
    5. 400
    6. 432
    7. 394
    8. 453
    9. 437
    10. 425
    11. 420

    12. 164
    13. 183
    14. 138

    Buffalo (394 yds, week 8) was only 6 yds away from giving us 8 straight games of allowing 400 yds or more. San Francisco, the worst defense in the NFL, is allowing 399 ypg on the season. In the other six games, only Oakland (351 yds, week 1) gained more than 300. It truly has been two (or three, really) different teams throughout the season.


    BTW, as a preemptive strike, I don't want to hear a peep about the competition in the first 3/last 3 segment. There were 3 playoff caliber teams and an overall strength of schedule of .464, which is about the same strength of schedule of the Colts and Bengals.
  2. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    Additionally, while the last three may not (OK, are not) strong offensive teams, if you look at their season averages and compare those to what they did against us, we totally dominated them relative to their normal below average offensive output.
  3. mosi

    mosi Rookie

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    Wow. When you put it that way it does look impressive. But could it be simply that teams figured out how to beat the pats (take shots down field) and the last three teams just are not capable of doing it?

    Personally, it looks likes the base 3-4 can shut down the run and pressure the QB, that makes it easier for the secondary to function.
  4. JJDChE

    JJDChE Rookie

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    That is a possibility, but considering the likes of Matt Schaub, Gus Frerotte and Kelly Holcomb were torching our defense, you'd figure just about anyone could, especially Simms who has been connecting with Galloway for big plays on a regular basis.
  5. scout

    scout Rookie

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    #15 Jersey

    Frerotte has been playing fairly well, not to mention how he burned us the last time we faced Miami. It will be interesting when we play Miami again if we continue with our total domination. Forget the weather conditions, if we totally dominate I think that will be quite telling.
  6. mosi

    mosi Rookie

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    I agree. Brooks Bollinger (sp) played well against Miami last week so it will be interesting to see how he does against us this time.
  7. Brady#12

    Brady#12 Rookie

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    i think he will struggle alot against our D becuse the radiers dont have a great D really
  8. flutie2phelan

    flutie2phelan Rookie

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    This is a fine example of ONE reason why this board is so great.

    Son, who is an IT maven, is home for Christmas. I just had him come read over my shoulder ... and i pointed out what you're doing here. Dad said, you don't see this kind of data mining in the Herald or the Globe or on Bob Lobel, do ya?

    Fine innocent lad replied, Maybe those media outlets should log on and read this site for their leads. "They do, my son, they do!"



  9. maverick4

    maverick4 Banned

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    re:

    That info is a little deceptive, because we had Rodney to start the season, and the last 3 QB's we have faced have not been good quarterbacks.

    When a defense faces a bad quarterback, they can focus more on the run and put pressure on the offensive line.

    I don't think we'll really know how good this defense is until the playoffs.
  10. emoney_33

    emoney_33 Rookie

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    It may be a little deceptive but these same bad qb's were torching us earlier in the year.
  11. teamplay

    teamplay Rookie

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    great data! Post of the month!!
  12. Willie55

    Willie55 Rookie

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    I think Matt Schaub is a better passer then Vick and is under-rated as a QB.
  13. PATSNUTme

    PATSNUTme Paranoid Homer Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #75 Jersey

    Good Post!

    I think that the improved secondary play is the result of the improved front 7 play.

    Earlier in the season we weren't getting any pressure on the passer. Also, stopping the run takes away from the play action.

    How's that for stating the obvious.
  14. oldrover

    oldrover Rookie

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    Awesome post... a tale of two teams. Great work. :)
  15. JJDChE

    JJDChE Rookie

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    It's only deceptive if you try to read too deeply in it.

    Is part of the reason because we faced tougher competition in the middle of the season? Of course. Is part of the reason because we had Rodney early? Of course.

    The key is, whatever wild card factors exist they are not big enough to make up for the HUGE gap in performance between the three segments. When I look at it, what I take out of it is that our defense is 1.) good and 2.) as good or better than when we had Rodney in there at the beginning of the season.


    Here is another little tidbit...We have held three consecutive opponents to under 200 yds of total offense. The Chicago Bears, the NFL's #1 defense in points and yards, has only held 2 teams to under 200 yds of total offense. Those two were San Fran and Baltimore.
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2005
  16. Jon without an H

    Jon without an H Rookie

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    While the Patriots have shown and undeniable improvement on Defense, as evidenced by the change in play from their earlier game against Buffalo and more recently, the strength of their opponents should not be ignored either.

    First/Last 3
    Raiders (4-10) W
    Carolina (10-4) L
    Pittsburgh (9-5) W
    NY (3-11) W
    Buffalo (4-10) W
    Tampa (9-5) W

    Opponents Winning Percentage: (.464)

    Middle 8
    SD (9-5) L
    Alanta (8-6) W
    Denver (11-3) L
    Buffalo (4-10) W
    Indy (13-1) L
    Miami (7-7) W
    Saints (3-11) W
    KC (8-6) L

    Opponents Winning Percentage: (.563)

    Basically the difference between a 9-7 team and a 7-9 team. Not too big of a difference really in my books. While playing better would appear to translate to more wins, I think there is a stronger arguement to how good the teams they were playing were.

    W% for Losses: (.729)

    W% for Wins: (.404)

    Obviously stats are minimumal in the long run as it's just a matter of whether you can win the game. So basically, I think that there is also a serious coaching/intangible factor outside of the defensive struggles on the inferior playing/record from last year.
  17. T-ShirtDynasty

    T-ShirtDynasty Moderator

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    Thought I'd throw some more data on the fire. :) Basically because I was curious myself.

  18. oldrover

    oldrover Rookie

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    Hawkins is definitely the street find of the year.
  19. Arizona Patsfan

    Arizona Patsfan Rookie

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    Schuab will be a STAR



    If the Falcons don't make him their starting QB next season, I hope they trade him. it will be Bret Favre revisited. Shaub is going to be a star QB in this Leaguer in a year or three...

    Every one forgets that Atlanta drafted Favre, kept him a year or two, (to get to know him real well!) and traded him to Green Bay because he'd never amount to much... Must have been the same guy who cut Johnny Unitas...

    With the love affair in Georgia between a team watching a RB play QB, and gain 50 60 yards a game as a runner (not scrambler) while not being able to pass for much more than a 100 yards a game consistently, they deserve what they will get. A .500 season for a year or two till he gets hurt...
  20. mcdonut16

    mcdonut16 Rookie

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