32 Observations, Week 11
Like every year, there has been a lot of focus on the rookies in the NFL. There have been some stud first-round defensive players like Aaron Donald and Khalil Mack, as well as the 21 receivers who have seen at least 100 snaps already. This week’s 32 Observations looks beyond the most hyped rookies, and focuses on 32 rookies that were not drafted in the first round and are not wide receivers.
It is worth noting that some of these players have played a limited amount of snaps. Some have played very well over those few snaps. This merely suggests that they deserve more of an opportunity to show what they can do, and doesn’t mean I think they would necessarily continue playing at that extreme high level of play if given more snaps.
Buffalo Bills: Preston Brown has a Tackling Efficiency of 33.5, which is third best for all 4-3 outside linebackers with at least 150 snaps. He has 46 made tackles compared to just two missed.
Miami Dolphins: Although it is on a small sample size, Terrence Fede has a Run Stop Percentage of 9.1, which is 12th best for 4-3 defensive ends with at least 20 run snaps. He has the most defensive snaps out of all the Dolphins rookies at 67 total.
New England Patriots: Center Bryan Stork is one of ten centers in the league with at least 200 pass block snaps and not a sack allowed.
New York Jets: Tight end Jace Amaro has had four defensive players miss tackles on his catches which are tied for ninth most among tight ends.
Baltimore Ravens: Although Timmy Jernigan has been used more on pass downs than run downs, he’s had an amazing 25.9% Run Stop Percentage, which is the most for 3-4 defensive ends with at least 25 snaps. The next highest is 13.5%.
Cincinnati Bengals: Running back Jeremy Hill has averaged 2.7 yards after contact per carry, which is tied for fourth most among running backs with at least 100 carries.
Cleveland Browns: Linebacker Chris Kirksey has a Yards Per Coverage Snap of 0.43, which is the second best for all inside/middle linebackers with at least 100 coverage snaps.
Pittsburgh Steelers: Defensive end Stephon Tuitt has a Pass Rushing Productivity of 6.8 which is among the top 15 for 3-4 defensive ends with at least 70 pass rushes. He has one sack, two hits and four hurries on 81 pass rushes.
Houston Texans: Although three defensive ends have seen more run snaps on the Texans than Jeoffrey Pagan, he has the second best Run Stop Percentage on the team at 6.5%, just behind J.J. Watt.
Indianapolis Colts: When outside linebacker Jonathan Newsome pass rushes from the defense’s right side, he has three sacks, three hits and six hurries on 75 pass rushes for a Pass Rushing Productivity of 13.0. That is fifth best for all 3-4 outside linebackers with at least 50 pass rushes from the right side.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Guard Brandon Linder has a Pass Blocking Efficiency of 97.8, which is the eighth best for all guards in the league.
Tennessee Titans: The only middle or inside linebacker with four sacks this year is Avery Williamson which leads the position.
Denver Broncos: Outside linebacker Corey Nelson has only played in 18 run snaps during the season, but he has been impressive in that time with three run stops. His Run Stop Percentage of 16.7% is second best for all 4-3 outside linebackers with at least five run snaps.
Kansas City Chiefs: Cornerback Phillip Gaines had a Yards Per Coverage Snap of 0.61 which is fourth best in the league for those cornerbacks with at least 100 coverage snaps. He has allowed 76 yards on 13 catches during his 124 coverage snaps.
Oakland Raiders: Quarterback Derek Carr is only sacked on 7.8% of the plays he is pressured on. That is the lowest rate for all quarterbacks.
San Diego Chargers: Running back Branden Oliver is one of just five running backs with at least 20 catches and no drops this year.
Dallas Cowboys: Outside linebacker Anthony Hitchens had nine run stops on 85 run snaps for a high Run Stop Percentage of 10.6. That is tenth best for 4-3 outside linebackers with at least 65 run snaps.
New York Giants: Guard Weston Richburg has a Pass Blocking Efficiency of 96.9, which is eighth best among left guards. He has allowed two sacks, six hits and seven hurries on his 374 pass blocks.
Philadelphia Eagles: There are only eight kickers who have been perfect on field goals beyond 50 yards this year. The only one to both be perfect and have three field goals from that distance made is Cody Parkey.
Washington: Like most rookies Bashaud Breeland had his struggles early on this year. However over these past four weeks Breeland has improved his play. He is one of three cornerbacks leading the league in passes defended From Week 8-11 at five passes defended. He’s done this despite Washington having their bye week over this time span.
Chicago Bears: Safety Brock Vereen has a Yards Per Coverage Snap of 0.01, which is the second best for all safeties with at least 20 coverage snaps. He has allowed one pass for six yards on 109 coverage snaps.
Detroit Lions: Over the last two weeks, Travis Swanson has seen significant playing time at guard. He is one of 25 guards this year with over 70 pass block snaps and no sacks allowed.
Green Bay Packers: Center Corey Linsley has a Pass Blocking Efficiency of 98.0, which is tenth best for all centers this year.
Minnesota Vikings: Running back Jerick McKinnon is one of 11 running backs with over 95 carries and no fumbles rushing.
Atlanta Falcons: Running back Devonta Freeman has a Yards Per Route Run of 2.48, which is the second best for all running backs.
Carolina Panthers: Guard Trai Turner has a Pass Blocking Efficiency of 97.5 which is tied for 12th best among all guards.
New Orleans Saints: The Saints have only seen 19 combined snaps of their drafted rookies outside of Brandin Cooks. On special teams, Vinnie Sunseri is tied for the highest special teams grade on the team (outside of Thomas Morstead) at +2.5.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Tight End Austin Seferian-Jenkins has a Pass Blocking Efficiency of 98.3%, which is tied for sixth best among all tight ends.
Arizona Cardinals: Over Ed Stinson’s first five games, he had 50 pass rushes and no pressure. Over the last four games he’s improved to having two hits and three hurries on 82 pass rushes.
St. Louis Rams: Cornerback E.J. Gaines has eight passes defended which is tied for third most among all cornerbacks.
San Francisco 49ers: Linebacker Chris Borland has a Run Stop Percentage of 19.8% which is the best for inside/middle linebackers. He has 21 run stops on 106 run snaps.
Seattle Seahawks: Although Kevin Pierre-Louis has allowed all five passes thrown his way to be caught, he’s only allowed 23 receiving yards. That is an average of just 4.6 yards per catch, which is the lowest for linebackers who have been thrown at five or more times.
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