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Holding Penalties down 59%; PI calls up 22%

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Sep 12th

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Team Bill's Worst Nightmare Supporter
Now the NFL has its own version of the HoMe RuN and the ThReE pOiNtEr. As if years if eroding away defense wasn’t enough...

It’s hard to take it seriously when QBs/offenses accomplish new records.

In its entire 100-year history, the NFL has never opened a season on the kind of scoring tear we've seen in 2020. Teams are averaging 24.7 offensive points per game during the first three weeks, 16% better than 2019 over the same period, and 22% higher than their average during the previous two decades.


Through the first 48 games of 2020, officials have thrown flags for 95 offensive holding penalties. That's 59% fewer than in 2019, when they were operating under instructions to increase such penalties, and 45% lower than the previous five-year average. At the same time, flags for defensive pass interference have risen 22% from 2019 to 72, the most through three weeks since at least 2001. Despite the increase in pass interference, the league's current average of 13.63 flags per game is its lowest through three weeks of a season since 2001.

While NFL players are highly skilled, no reasonable observer would believe that they have changed their blocking styles to such an extent, not after a virtual offseason and without the benefit of a single preseason game. It's far more likely that officials have changed their standards, similar to previous seasons when they have been asked to focus on other points of emphasis, such as roughing the passer.

"Officials are good soldiers," ESPN officiating analyst John Parry said. "They hear the message and they perform based on what they've been instructed to call. At this level, they are that good. Whatever the marching orders are, that's how they will officiate."

Doctor DDS

Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job
Interesting information. Passing yards and scoring have obviously been up and had not even thought of the penalty angle. Too many advantages have gone towards the offense and this is another. Hard to stop a team when they'll seemingly call a ticky tacky defensive holding on 3rd and 18 or bail out a team like this weeks Bills game with a PI on a play where it appears the WR initiated contact. I'd like to see more balance in the game. When an offense gets the ball down 2 with over a minute left it feels like a 90% chance they will end up in FG range.


In the Starting Line-Up
then we need to start holding more on the oline... figure out what the threshold is...

as if BB hasn't already done that...


In the Starting Line-Up
I love that there is less holding. That call ruins the game especially when the holding is away from the play or is ticky tac in nature which happens a lot.


In the Starting Line-Up
I love that there is less holding. That call ruins the game especially when the holding is away from the play or is ticky tac in nature which happens a lot.

Don’t want a holding call? Don’t hold! The amount of pressure negated by blatant holds against the Raiders last week was awful. Arms stretched out, pursuer having his path completely changed. It was awful. I find sacks to be a far more exciting play, and all of these holds are ruining some great pursuits.


Third String But Playing on Special Teams
It's part of their COVID protocol. They need to produce fireworks this season for obvious reasons. So long as it's the same for everyone it is what it is.


2nd Team Getting Their First Start
So long as it's the same for everyone it is what it is.

These are the types of stats that usually are exploited by Ernie Adams' data science team. I'll be curious to see if the Patriots start throwing deep more often (it's riskier) or if even with the 22% bump, the numbers don't bear out an increased chance of consistently moving the ball in "chunk" plays that way vs turning it over.

I guess that's my follow up question - does that 22% lead to an increase in scoring for the teams that benefit, by how much, and what's the turnover ratio with the teams that most benefit from the same increase? Start to try and gain some correlation in the numbers to fuel decisions in future gameplans.


Keep your stick on the ice! Supporter
The games anymore are more or less the QB skill comps from the pro bowl. As defense is legislated out of the game more and more it’s what we’re left with sadly. The scores are getting more reminiscent of basketball games.


Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract
The league had to do something to keep viewer's interest in light of kneeling, sjw protests, etc (sorry, but it really turns off some fans - like it or not) and the "weirdness" of empty seats. What better way to keep interest then to make the league into a game of Madden. And it's not a coincidence that the league's marquee player (Mahomes) makes a ton of exciting plays, long downfield passes, etc., when he breaks the pocket. Inevitably on these plays there's a push in the back of a pursuing defender, a shirt tug, a tackle, etc. from an offensive lineman that goes uncalled.
Just wait for tonight when Mahomes rolls out avoiding pressure and the guy chasing him or about to tackle him gets tackled by a KC player...happens every game...then he chucks one 50 yards to a wide open Hill
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