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Thoughts on Red Zone Defense

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Metaphors, Oct 3, 2007.

  1. Metaphors

    Metaphors In the Starting Line-Up

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    The Pats are 0-6 in red zone stops this year and that has been about the only downer for most people so far this year. I looked a little closer at all the opponent TD drives to see if there were any disturbing trends within the trend...

    Jets (1st) - Down 7-0, 10 play, 66 yd, 6:22, 4 plays in red zone
    Jets (2nd) - Down 28-7, 9 play, 70 yd, 4:42, 4 plays in red zone
    SD (1st) - Down 24-0, 16 play, 72 yd, 8:17, 7 plays in red zone
    SD (2nd) - Down 31-7, 8 play, 82 yd, 3:08, 2 plays in red zone
    Buf - Down 3-0, 12 play, 80 yd, 6:42, 5 plays in red zone
    Cin - Down 10-0, 5 play, 35 yd, 2:25, 1 play in red zone

    Couple of things I noticed:
    - No FG attempts by Jets, SD or BUF
    - No TDs scored from outside the red zone
    - Pats leading before all 6 drives, significantly in 3 of them
    - 3 drives (Jets 2nd, SD 2nd, Cin) did not have a 3rd down in the red zone

    Next I looked at the 3rd/4th down conversions made in the red zone by the Jets (1st), SD (1st) and Buf:

    Jets : 3rd and 1 at the 16 = QB sneak
    - Hard to stop a QB sneak
    Jets : 3rd and 6 at the 7 = Coles swing pass for TD
    - Pats out of position on this one. Ball was in the air a looooooong time.
    SD : 3rd and 4 at the 12 = Gates short middle pass
    - Gates is pretty good
    SD : 3rd and G at the 4 = Tomlinson swing pass, stopped short
    - Nice stop here, but SD down 24-0 so....
    SD : 4th and G at the 1 = Neal short pass for TD
    - Not much you can do about that.
    Buf : 3rd and 3 at the 15 = Gaines swing pass
    - Didn't see the play, so no comment.
    Buf : 3rd and G at the 8 = Lynch run for TD
    - Very disappointing. Broke multiple tackles. Buf almost conceding a FG.

    Conclusions? I didn't see anything to worry about here except for 2 plays: Coles 1st TD and the Lynch run. The other drives can be explained by the Pats having big leads (opposition desperate, conservative defense) or Cincy only having to go 1 red zone yard after the Brady pick. Not a large sample of data to go on, but I'm not losing any sleep over it.

    Asante's pick on Monday doesn't count as a red zone stop, even though the change of possesion happened at the 2 yard line. I'll count that as an "unofficial" stop.
     
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    Last edited: Oct 3, 2007
  2. patsox23

    patsox23 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    GREAT post, thanks for the work. Interesting and insightful.
     
  3. SpiderFox53

    SpiderFox53 Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    Why doesn't the Asante pick count? It was 2nd and 9 at the 20 yard line. Looks like a red zone stop to me.

    1st and 10 at NE 21 (2:00) K.Watson right tackle to NE 20 for 1 yard (J.Seau; T.Bruschi).
    2nd and 9 at NE 20 (1:22) C.Palmer pass deep middle intended for C.Johnson INTERCEPTED by A.Samuel at NE 2. A.Samuel to NE 3 for 1 yard (G.Holt).
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2007
  4. Metaphors

    Metaphors In the Starting Line-Up

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    I was going by memory and not the gamebook. Thought the pass was outside the 20.

    Interesting question though...do you have to be inside the 20 yd line to be in the red zone? or just at the 20? Personally I don't feel like being that precise so I won't argue either way.

    Getting a turnover in the red zone, regardless of where the line of scrimmage was when the play started, is still big and deserving of mention.
     
  5. SpiderFox53

    SpiderFox53 Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    I thought anything 20 and in was considered red zone, but I agree it's nothing to argue about. I was a great play by Asante, and that is all that really matters.
     
  6. xmarkd400x

    xmarkd400x 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    Just a thought: How many FG attempts usually happen on TD drives?
     
  7. Metaphors

    Metaphors In the Starting Line-Up

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    My comments weren't limited to just the TD drives in question (obviously). I was making the point that there wasn't an attempted FG in the 1st 3 games. I'll agree it is a little bit of a tangent on the main point, but really not that hard to figure out. If I had said "No FG attempts on these TD drives"...then that would be a problem.
     
  8. JoeSixPat

    JoeSixPat Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Thanks for pointing this out - that really illustrates that this is one of those quirky stats... and let's face it... allowing 6 Red Zone appearance PERIOD is an amazing stat itself.

    It's nice to give the Defense something to focus on - but the fact that we could have spotted every team 3 TDs and a Field Goal and still be 4-0 means the entire team deserves a pat on the back. 48 points allowed is just outstanding.
     
  9. solman

    solman Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    Its a sample size of six. The only thing its relevant for, is motivating the Pats.
     
  10. smg93

    smg93 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    #54 Jersey

    Yep, stats can deceive. Important thing is thats only 6 TD's given up in 4 games. That's amazing. The Browns gave up about the same amount of points in their game against the Bengals alone.
     
  11. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    There has been a lot of talk about offensive scoring records, and by the way, I'd bet a ton of money we break the franchise scoring record by a mile, but we may also break the defensive franchise points allowed record, just broken in 03, and 253(I think thats the #) That was 15.8 per game, we are now at 12. (17 a game the rest of the way would do it)
     
  12. ctpatsfan77

    ctpatsfan77 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #3 Jersey

    FYI, the scoring records are:

    Most points scored: 27.6 PPG (442 points, 1980)
    Fewest points allowed: 14.8 PPG (237 points, 2006)
     
  13. PatSunday

    PatSunday On the Game Day Roster

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    What worries me more is that the Patriots are also unproven in 4th-quarter comebacks and game-winning field goals.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2007

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